I know, it’s kind of an unusual title, but that’s how I feel we as a society are today. I’m not saying there are not pockets of good or that there aren’t people who are good, but in the last week, I have encountered three different instances with young people that not only hurt my heart, but it pissed me off as well.
The first instance was for my son’s birthday party. I live in a small community, which isn’t the wealthiest if we’re honest about it, and I wanted my child to invite his friends without them having to worry about presents or paying to get into Sky’s the Limit. We were taking care of it because are blessed enough to be able to do so. That’s not the case for everyone. I feel like it’s more important to have my child’s birthday spent with the people he considers family and friends without a price tag being associated with it.
As one of the little boys played with our dogs, he mentioned that people judge him because his older brothers were arrested. I sat there for a minute, a little stunned at the truth that poured from this child, and I hope what I told him stays with him always. I told him that no one else defines you, no one else’s actions define you, only you define you, and if people want to pass judgement on you because of what someone else did, then that’s their problem.
I absolutely hate that he felt that his last name had a stigma, that the action of his brothers weighed on him, and even more so, I hated that he felt that from others. When I asked him what he wanted to be when he was older, he said a WWE wrestler or a veterinarian. I told him both things were great, and if anyone ever tells him either one is impossible, for him to work hard and prove them wrong because only he has to live his life. No one else.
So, for all the naysayers, please just hush and keep your thoughts of the impossible to yourself. We should be inspiring our youth to push the boundaries, shoot for the stars, and make the impossible … possible. How can we not see that?
Then the second event came a few days later as I was working. My mom called me, a little panic in her voice, to tell me my thirteen-year-old niece was jumped in the school bathroom to the point where she was knocked unconscious. Then there’s the other part that my niece didn’t fight back, a group of girls were in the bathroom, and a few of them were taking videos. I now have two of the videos in my possession, and I just think it is absolutely ridiculous that this is becoming a norm for our youth. To make it even better, I don’t understand how a child who didn’t throw the first punch, didn’t fight back, was given the same punishment as the aggressor. That makes absolutely zero sense to me.
Again, I wonder what our society is coming to. Why are we so saturated with hate? With negativity?
Finally, last night, I see a post from my sister-in-law about my seven-year-old niece, and as I read it, my heart hurts again for our youth. Why should a seven -year-old be worried about her calorie in-take or how big her legs are? The girl is legit scrawny, which is besides the point, and I wonder why she would have those thoughts floating through her little mind at all. She should be carefree. She should be running, playing, tumbling and not have those self-deprecating thoughts in her mind at such a young age.
So, here’s my truth, y’all. I didn’t spend my youth in a church. I lost my virginity when I was almost seventeen, and I found out I was pregnant right before I turned nineteen. I wasn’t married, and I never did marry my son’s father. I felt the sting of judgment being passed on me by some older folks when I moved here, and I married my husband. Like I was dirty for having a child out of wedlock. Well, it happened, and I wouldn’t go back to change a single thing. I love my son, and I am who I am today because of my child. I learned so much, I grew so much, and I set a path to be successful regardless of what the statistics said. I have my bachelor’s degree, and I have a good job, so piss on statistics and the naysayers.
Another piece of truth, I’m a Christian. A pretty sucky one because I am inconsistent with attending church, and all that jazz, but Christianity is a part of who I am now. I was saved in a small church in my mid-twenties, and I’m still learning as I fumble along. As a Christian, as a human-being, I just believe in loving people. Loving our youth. Looking past their mistakes and seeing the possibilities. When are we going to stop passing so much judgement? If another person isn’t hurting someone else with their actions, let it be. I don’t care if you’re gay, straight, poor, African American, Mexican, Puerto Rican or whatever. We have jerks, bullies, and criminals in all colors, shapes and sizes. If you’re a good human being, I’m not here to pass judgement on your life choices. It’s not my life to live, so as one of God’s children, I choose to love people regardless. That’s who I am. Take it or leave it. I really don’t care. The world is saturated with enough hate.