THIS WEEK IS A WEEK OF HEARTBREAK

Lots of sad stuff and an invitation (request?) at the end.
  1. My stepdad checked himself into a psychiatric hospital. Stay: indefinite.
    Truthfully, his mental illness posed a lot of difficulties for me as a child and I carried some resentment for a long time. Now, as an adult, I'm able to have so much more compassion for him. I'm proud of his courage in seeking wellness and choosing life.
  2. Three students got in a car accident. One young woman died.
    The driver, who I knew well, is in serious condition. A hard thing about living in such a remote area is that anyone in bad shape has to be life flight-ed elsewhere. I keep thinking of her, far away from home, hurting in the worst possible ways. I don't want her to be consumed by guilt. I want her to know that she is loved.
  3. Two high schoolers were arrested today for plotting a Columbine-style attack on their classmates at the high school.
    My heart broke for my sister, who had to drop her kids off at a school with policeman out front, for my niece and nephews, who may not ever understand school as the safe place I knew, for the two young men who must have been so hurt and angry and desperate, for their parents...
  4. It's been a lot.
  5. I'm a Zen Buddhist.
    And the first noble truth is that life (the world) is full of suffering.
  6. Ezra Bayda, a Zen Buddhist scholar, writes, "And what is the path? To learn to reside in whatever life presents / ...And what is the path? / To turn away from constantly seeking comfort / and from trying to avoid pain."
  7. I'm trying to walk that path right now.
  8. And it's really hard. So my request to all of you is to be a sangha.
    Offer your loving-kindness into the world. Send your strength and resilience out toward those who need it, me and my community included.
  9. It's a small thing and an incredibly powerful thing, to be a witness.
  10. So thank you, to any of you reading this.
    __/\__ (a bow)