I was trying to think of a topic to write about for this post and, though I have quite a list of ideas, I’m empty of words. So I’ve decided to simply be candid. It’s what I do. I bare my heart when nothing else works. I just put it all out there. Every one of you, I believe, deserves the best I can give you. And since I cannot muster anything else to tell you, that is what I’m going to do now. Here it is…

I’m tired. I’m tired of all the crazy in my state, and in our country and in the world. I’m tired of holding my head up and forging forward in the face of crises and imbalance and abuse and disrespect. I’m exhausted with being good and honest and forthright. I’m weary of advancing the belief that I have something to contribute towards the goodness in the world in order to contrast the badness and make a difference.

I’m spent. Out of fuel. Admit it. You are, too. Am I right? Aren’t we all tired of the ongoing high levels of stress? Tired of the pervasive trends of infighting and unkindness and cruelty? Aren’t we sick of accusing and attacking and condemning one another? Sitting here as I do, pondering what I most want to say – to write – today to each of you, that’s all I can come up with…I’m tired.

My eyes leak tears of frustration and fear on a regular basis now. I’m tired of masks and mandates and blame and illness and, mostly, I’m weary of poverty of heart. I don’t care about red or blue anymore. I’m no longer interested in Democrat, Republican, Green, Libertarian and political concerns. I don’t care if you are Buddhist or Christian or Jewish or Atheist or just plain lost. I don’t care what you look like. Are you wheelchair bound? Black, Native American, White, of mixed races? Are you old? Young? Middle-aged? Male, female, non-binary? Gay, straight, trans, confused? Are you an immigrant to the US or born here? I am telling you – and I mean this from the bottom of my heart – I truly don’t care. What I’m looking for is inside you. My eyes seek yours. My heart is reaching for yours. What I desire is what is real. What is genuine. All I want is to connect with you – the you inside.

What I’m seeing from my balcony here among the trees, is a group of people who’ve grown frustrated with each other. I see people who have become more willing to judge than understand, people who are more ready to criticize than approach with compassion, people increasingly empowered to hate rather than love. My shoulders grow heavy and my tears blur the ink on my pages. The negativity, the anger gassed up by fear wears on me. I believe it depletes each one of us, if we’re honest.

Take a moment. Think of times when you’ve given something, anything – a hug, a gift, a shoulder to cry on – to someone else. Don’t you feel better? A bit larger than you were before you did it? Doesn’t it move your heart to see someone else’s spirits uplifted because of something you took the time to do for them? Don’t you like what happened when your heart touched theirs? I know for me, when I give from my heart in an attempt to lift someone else’s, I breathe more easily. I smile a bit more. I feel a bit better about myself.

As I sat here wrestling to create a worthy post – for you – I couldn’t think of anything more that I could give you than my honesty. Because in my honesty I hope you will know that I seek to extend my solidarity with you and that you’ll feel my earnest desire to connect with your heart and soul. And in this kind of a moment, I encounter a truth. At least for me it is true. It may be for you, too. I think I have a glimpse into how that connectivity happens. It happens by each of us being loving and giving and caring and kind. It’s offering the best of what is within each of us. And I know that for sure.

It’s like this: Something happens when I rise above the disgruntled aspects of myself. Something changes when I reach above the snarly part of me that wants to win or beat you or be better than you. Something shifts. Something ignites when we are able to rise above those things and connect with one another. I’ve experienced that, when I listen to the better angel within me, I find a place of calm. I find a place inside me that wills to join with you. It happens when I’m real, undefended and genuine. It’s when I can open up and tell you of my fatigue and my sadness. When I tell you of my silliness and my vulnerability and my joy. It’s when I can ask you from the bottom of my heart, can’t we try together to do better than this? It’s when my soul shouts, yes, everything within me believes that we can.

I believe, when our hearts do reach out for one another, we can create a better, more easeful, more joy-filled way of life for all of us. FOR one another and WITH one another, we can rise above. If we will only try. Cuz then, together, we can smile and laugh and grieve and endure. Together, we can see each other as we truly are, which is as fellow humans on the same planet. Then we become neighbors creating a better world than we previously thought we could.