This powerful line has affected me even more as I've gotten older. It helps rectify what seems to be a natural, automatic-- if unfair and often wrong-- human tendency: to judge others for how they are living their lives, especially if their life bears no similarity to your own.
You know what I mean. Maybe you're an adamant non-smoker, so you assume the smoker walking down the street must not care about his health. You refuse to eat fast food, so the mom who picks up Happy Meals for her kids must be lazy or uneducated. You never lose your temper, so the parent who does occasionally yell or swear under her breath must be unstable. The list goes on.
It's easy to judge others. It's the lazy way to live, in a way. It enables us to write people off. However, we have no idea what another's life has been like, so I try to remember Holden's mother's words of warning-- they haven't had the same advantages-- if I feel any judge-y wheels turning. Not that I've never had challenges-- of course I have. But this line helps me remember that it's easy to simplify someone's else's life. Everyone's lives are more complicated than they appear.
Let's take it a step further. Do you ever wonder why it is that some people are born into such terribly hard lives of abuse, neglect, poverty, hunger? Is it just horrible luck? Fate? Or, we could borrow the rather wise argument from our kids: It's not fair! It's not fair! There is no explanation for what we are born into, as I see it.
How random life is. We have no choice or say into what situation we are born; we simply have to move forward with the hand we are dealt. I'm constantly trying to make goals for the future-- for myself, my career, my family. Our future is something we actually have a say in, isn't it?
What do you hope to make from your future?
~Julia @ Frantic Mama
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