I found these three words, which had been written down on a tiny scrap of paper, hidden under items tossed on top of it. I do not remember the time I wrote the words down, but there they were, in my own handwriting, written in pencil. I am not sure who said them or why. I write words down all of the time that strike me at particular moments in my day. Sometimes, I hear someone say something on T.V. or read a quote or a line in a book and if it moves me I say the sentence over and over again in my head until I can find a pen or in this case a pencil. Once it is written, I have no specific place I put it. In this particular case, I obviously had placed it on my fireplace mantle. I do know, it must have been a long time ago, because my mantle was a jumble of junk and had not been cleared in many, many months.
These words stood out to me today because, for whatever reason at the time, I put quotes around them. It did not say, I see you – it said, “I see you” as if someone or something was speaking to me directly. In my quirky mind, it was serendipitous. I had not started my day in a very good place mentally and seconds before had even felt alone, and quite honestly, a bit sorry for myself.
“I see you” came at a time that I wanted – no - needed to be seen. My original intention for the day was to work on completing my third novel, as the deadline looms closer and I am still a ways from being done. Instead, because of my mental state, I had decided to clean my mantle.
“I see you.”
Three words, in my handwriting, gave me comfort. Through that comfort, I was able to see past my own fears, and started to think of others around me. Having been seen - I was able to see - and I did not feel quite as alone.
I see you as you struggle financially. I know what it feels like to have that crushing panic deep in your chest, knowing that the mortgage, rent, water, electric, car, medical or whatever the bill is, needs to be paid (last week) and you can’t cover it. You work your tail off everyday and it never seems to be enough. “I see you” in your struggle. I am there also.
Maybe you, your family member or someone you know has cancer or has had a debilitating illness. You ride the wave of uncertainty, not sure which shore you or they will land on, hoping and praying that you land on sand, and not jagged rocks.
Because we are human, you, like me, are overcome, at times, with feelings of aloneness and inadequacies - even as you are surrounded by people.
Maybe, you are going through a broken relationship, or a divorce. Your whole world seems turned upside down, and you no longer can see your future the way you did yesterday.
These are such a tiny list of the crisis’s that surround us each and every day of our lives. I certainly do not make light of any of the problems we face. I do not know if things will get any better for any of us, but maybe that is the whole point of living – to learn through mistakes and try not to make the same ones again. To stand strong doing moments, when you really do not think you have any strength left in you. To accept the situations that come into your life, that you have zero control over. To relax and follow the current, accepting the direction you are being taken, knowing that somewhere (or at least hoping), someone is in control and will guide you when the time is right.
What has given me a tiny bit of solace and of which I was able to be reminded of, is that we are not alone, you and I. We are all connected to each other, and truly, walking the same path side by side.
“I see you.” You have value and merit and have so much you can give to life and other people. You are no accident and are a far greater person than your problems, for your problems do not define who you are, how you react to those problems do.