This I Believe
I believe that Hope conquers Despair.
In 25 years of providing therapy for children and families; it is frustration, pain, and hopelessness which bring people to my door. Each day, I’ve held the same prayer and meditation: that Grace would emerge through my work and help my guests create more beautiful, dignified pictures in their lives. The transforming power of Hope, bringing moments of beauty into pool’s of ugliness.
I believe in the beauty of a child, going blind, who learned to play soccer with his friends. The beauty of a teen talking about how his Tourette’s was ruining his social life and the compassion and support of his male group friends. The beauty of being told by a junior high student that he didn’t need me anymore, he now had friends to rely on. The bitter sweet memory of a mother’s thanks for her son’s happiness in the years before his tragic death. The beauty of a child, once himself a victim of social ridicule, whom stopped to help another child being teased at the pool. The strength and forgiveness of a young man, himself different because of his learning struggles, whom in a darkened closet, laid on top of his classmate, comforting and protecting her as gun shots rang out down the hallway.
I do believe in the life changing power of trauma and despair; myself, a secondary trauma victim of Columbine’s devastation. The forever shaken eyes of a freshman girl when she recounted being left behind in the class. The faith shaking question of how I, myself, would react in such a situation. The disassociating pain of hearing about those moments in the library. The fear of the siblings, themselves locked down in their elementary classrooms. The more recent pain of a sheriff, and all first and secondary responders who make life changing decisions and are then responsible for helping piece lives and communities back together again. My own avoidance and pain of past memories, unlocked by the repetition of another school shooting.
Yet, I still believe in a deeper peace which Despair cannot reach. That, while wounded, the communities of Bailey, and in Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania will heal in time just as Littleton has. Knowing, that while pained by my own experiences, each day I go to work, is ripe with moments of beauty. The faith that great things may come from all children if they are nurtured and directed in Hope’s promises.
I believe that when Hope meets Despair, it is despair which pauses, and steps aside.
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