Lately I've been surrounded by a lot of inspiration. Not just people who are inspiring simply because they are inherently good, but because they have found a shred of light in the darkest hour.
Near where I live, a brutal crime has occurred where a man has lost his wife, his children, his house, and almost everything inside. The story is so sad, even telling it or reading about it seems so surreal. It is one of those moments which I think few people experience...how do you go on when you have lost everything that means the most to you, everything you've loved and worked for. I think about the crime and just wonder how this father/husband will go on. This family was robbed of their loving life together. The tale is horrendous and unimaginable.
One of the many memorial services going on for the family was shown on TV. Many people spoke, with one of the final speakers being the father. A tall man, dressed in a perfectly tailored grey suit, with bruises all over his face and a gash on his forehead, all a result of the horrific night. His first line, he cracked a light hearted joke. As he continued on to describe his loving family with such grace and poise, he recounted his memories, and made us laugh as well. He spoke as a loving father and husband, and you could feel that. I sat in amazement. In spite of all he is going through, his kindness just permeated through the crowd. This was a crowd of over 1,600 present, many more watching at home, in a service which took place the day after burying his family.
I cried for much of the service, but my cries turned to sobs when the father spoke. My heart broke for him, and I was also inspired by his nature. Even when the worst happens, it is necessary to rise above it. It is important to still be a good person. The only two times he waivered in composure is when he said that his younger child would have grown to be a lovely lady, and that if there is anything we can gain from this senseless tragedy is to pass on kindness everyday. To see someone in the depths of such sadness exhibiting a stance of love and care when he could easily be drowning in sorrow and anger...I can say that I have gone through much less in my life and sometimes I have chosen to be angry. After seeing what I saw today, I know I have no reason to be.
Inspiration 2 is about adoption. First off I should say, I work and volunteer with the most amazing people on the planet. Just when I think they can't be kinder, they show me that there is always a way to be a better person.
The 2 with adopted siblings...their families saved their siblings from abusive homes. They weren't setting out to adopt but their siblings were getting severely beaten and tortured in their own homes. The stories I heard broke my heart. One of the siblings was made to bathe in bleach by her parents! That is mild compared to the other things she went through. She remembers praying to God at the age of 3 to send her a family where she can be happy. It took God 12 years to respond, and she finally got her wish. While she has many mental and a few physical disorders she needs to deal with, she continues to study and work her hardest to get somewhere in her life, but now she has the support of a loving family. People who deal with a lot less quit a lot faster.
I heard both of these stories within a few days of each other. I'm not sure why it worked out that way, but it did. I have been going through the stories in my head in some attemtpt to figure out why these innocent people had to go through such catastrophic heartache. It is not fair. I couldn't find a real answer and that is the part that upsets me the most. We are always looking for answers.
Maybe the father was right. If I can learn the lesson of hope and love from their pain, their grief/loss of life will not be in vain.
The worst kind of pain, is watching someone you love in pain