It was the feelings of a guilt trip and the words of being a ‘Brothers Keeper’ that triggered me. But was it genuinely helping me and them to think this way? Something needed to change.
Some people seem to be able to push the manipulation guilt trip button every time. They tell you how life has been hard. They share their background and a wide range of struggles. You listen, and you empathize with their struggle, and indeed life is hard for some people.
Then you look at yourself and all that you have. You may begin to feel some guilt, then some sense of a need to help them. You want to help, but you have only so much life, energy, time, and money.
Stress can add up to be too much, and we can have a mental health breakdown, but when we break it down like in the story of David and Goliath, we can find a way through the chaos.
Stressful times can feel like a massive avalanche of overwhelming pressure. The keyword in that sentence is ‘feel.’ You have a feeling of living in the overwhelming shadow of something that could crush you.
There is a resistance we all face into, but with the presence of others, we can know hope. So let’s listen.
It felt to her that she was the only one having struggles. Every day, as her eyes peeled open, there was an instantaneous thought ‘Can I do this’?
As someone who works outside in the wind and rain, I notice that the ambient surroundings have an effect on me. It might be the heat of the summer or the cold of winter. The mud that clings heavily to my boots in the winter or the brightness of the sun in the heat of summer. There is always a resistance I have to push into.
‘Power over’ was normal, but ‘power with’ was what they needed. When we listen deeply, we move forward. Mental health flourishes when power is shared.
She was small in stature, and I think she also saw herself as being a little person, insignificant. She was also quiet and never really said much or offered up an opinion. When she shared some of her story, I learned how, as a young adult, she had developed schizophrenia.
In her delusional state, she had done some very destructive things to people’s property. She had been committed to living in a Mental Health hospital and lived there for many years.