Wednesday, June 18, 2008

The Raw Deal

I think, eventually in life, we all get plastered with something we feel is a “raw deal”.

Some feel this way when they have a special needs child. When I gave birth to Ricky, I did feel shock, and questioned how I would deal with it, but didn’t feel it a “raw” deal, just an unexpected one. After all, I hadn’t done anything to “protect” myself from a special-needs child (other than prayer), and I knew that the possibility existed.
So what leads one to feel that they have a “raw” deal? It’s when you do everything right. When you lead a normal, productive, caring life, treating people properly, and nevertheless you get a “test” that is thrown at you “from the other side of the ballpark”. This is so unexpected, so implausible that you feel like you have been thrown into the deep end of the swimming pool, completely by chance, and totally unprepared.
Of course, the question is, what do you do with this “deal” once you have it? Do you wallow in self pity, or get on with your life? Do you swim or sink and drown?

I think a lot of the problem is when we brow-beat ourselves for getting into this mess… whether we did contribute to the problem, or not. Now I think that we have to do a reality check. We have to evaluate if we have made mistakes, correct them,…. and go on. We also have to say at times: I am not the one who is in control here. Being a good person is no guarantee of an easy life. It’s scary to admit it, but we cannot always protect ourselves from catastrophe. We delude ourselves that we can, but we can’t. That’s scary.

But the main thing is to get on with our lives. And not to forget to cherish those we love… including ourselves.

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