Someone Like You...
“UNLESS SOMEONE LIKE YOU CARES A WHOLE AWFUL LOT, NOTHING IS GOING TO GET BETTER. IT’S NOT." -THE LORAX
Look in the mirror.
What do you see?
Many times, the person looking back is not necessarily someone we like. But...what if...
What if that person, in all of their messiness, was someone that simply cared?
What would this world look like?
What would culture look like?
More than that...
What would THEIR world look like?
What would the culture around them look like?
You and me both know what it's like to get or send a text with the words "How are you doing?" We know the response that comes naturally..."I'm fine." Right? That is the typical exchange. And we also know that that answer is, for the most part, a lie. But....what if.....
What if both the sender and the receiver found enough safety in the context of the relationship at hand to go beyond the "I'm fine."
+ What if we could be seen?
+ What if we could be honest?
+ What if we understood that our honesty can help others?
+ What if we saw how our authenticity pushes us further than we could ever imagine.
+ What if we felt the security to really let people in?
Many times, we don't feel or experience any of the above "what ifs" because we've never seen it modeled. We can not begin to grasp the fact that...
1. We CAN face our storms.
2. We CAN own our reality.
3. We CAN share our stories.
Yes, you're probably thinking that those are far reaching realities for everyone else out there except for me. I've thought it too. We all have. But what if...
One of our friends, Phil Myers, posted about his own journey as he presses forward through his battles with depression, bipolar, and PTSD. This is what he recently wrote on his socials...
"You would never know anymore unless I told you, but I’m crashing again. Yes I pushed but not “too much.” I pushed harder than ever this time and found another limit. So I backed off, just like you would in the gym, and I’m giving myself time.
Time to rest and grow stronger. It’s exhausting, self imposed ups and downs with depression...it sucks. But it’s better than just staying stuck and down all the time.
But I’m learning and growing each time. Maybe one day I’ll actually push or grow enough to beat it. Something a small part of me feels is possible even though the doc’s says it’s not. But heck, you all know I’m a little hard headed, so I’m going to keep going.
Just keep going, It does gets better little by little.
I truly feel if I can learn to make these changes within me. I can not only show and teach others how to do it too, but show the world a path to start healing as well.”
You see, he has dealt with the thought of suicide on multiple occasions. He has faced the doctor telling him he has bipolar and PTSD. He has struggled with relentless depression. He has also faced the WHAT IF question...
+ What if this doesn't have to win.
+ What if there is purpose for me?
+ What if the pain can help me grow?
+ What if I can help change the world?
For him, he had every reason to give up. He had every reason to quit. He had every reason to end it all. He had every reason imaginable to allow his story to be silenced. But...he didn't. He looked in the mirror...and even though he saw a lot of things he didn't like, he saw something deep down, almost seemingly microscopic. He saw that someone like him was actually what someone like me needed...and he didn't even know me yet.
We met a while back as he joined our advisory team, as he was trying to figure out what to do with himself now that he was transitioning out of the military. We became friends quickly. One day, a conversation alot like the one I started with happened. Somewhere in there, I think both of us actually gave up on the facade that we were fine.
Right then and there, we were both met with empathy and compassion, understanding and challenge. We found that, and still do, in our friendship. Now, as he treks off on the final half of his Appalachian Trail hike, he continues to press forward. Using his truth, using his story, using his vulnerability. And, like all of us, the truth of his story is still being written.
So let me ask you...Where are you?
Someone needs someone like you.
Someone like you needs someone.
As the Lorax so profoundly stated...“UNLESS SOMEONE LIKE YOU CARES A WHOLE AWFUL LOT, NOTHING IS GOING TO GET BETTER. IT’S NOT."
What if getting better begins with a simple "How are you?" that is followed by a simple "I'm not okay" It doesn't take much effort...just some genuine care and a little time, and a choice to believe that still small voice that whispers truth in your ear...
This is how we silence the lies that scream so loudly.
This is how we give truth a voice.
What if it takes someone like you?