It was just a few days ago, talking about "pet peeves," that kaya wrote:
People who crow about how they would never do [insert whatever shocking thing here], how they can’t comprehend anyone doing ‘it’, that they are just too good/special/moral/enslaved to stoop to such levels and how those who DO do ‘it’ are missing something, some secret that only those who are too good/special/moral/enslaved are smart enough to get.
Now, to be honest, I don't actually know what THAT bit refers to. I would guess that there is probably some gossipy, judgmental, self-righteous, nastiness going on at Fetlife, but I really can't be sure. I don't get around the blogging circle much anymore, and I never have had the time or patience for Fetlife.
Whatever it is that got kaya going, I'm relatively sure that the specific bit of gossip she referred to isn't about me or us. However important and life-changing our problems have seemed to US lately, I'm aware that most will have simply found it all dull and tiresome. If there are people making judgments about the things we've dealt with and the choices we've made along the way, they are opting not to put those opinions out here in front of us. It could be that there is back channel talk happening -- people chit-chatting all about what they would or would not do/tolerate/put up with/accept, and on and on and on. It is possible that there are those "true" slaves who are convinced that they would have done much better at a number of turns along this path; people who have it all figured out nice and neat and tidy. I can well imagine that going on -- and in my head, I can hear myself respond that it is really just a matter of not enough life experience. If there is one thing I have discovered along 56 years of living it is that I really don't know a lot of things:
- I don't know how much I can endure.
- I don't know how deeply I believe what I believe.
- I don't appreciate the distance I will go to help and support someone who needs it.
- I don't completely comprehend the power of love and trust and hope.
- I don't fully credit my own courage and determination.
- I don't always notice how optimistic I am in the face of challenges.
YET is the ultimate linguistic nod to the reality that the future is an unknowable, unpredictable, uncontrollable vastness. YET concedes that we will all grow, change, adjust, and adapt as circumstances move us from moment to moment. We will live and we will learn and we will come to find the people we are in the doing of that. We each must, in living day to day, leave the past behind, live every single moment, and move on to what comes next. So to those who are feeling superior, smug, or judgmental -- I understand. It is easy to judge when you haven't learned who you are YET, when you don't know what you are capable of YET, when you do not YET know what you don't know. It simply isn't time for you YET.
I don't think that it is really possible to package up our life's lessons and hand them off to someone else. I am pretty seriously convinced that everyone has to go out and learn their own life's lessons, but for what it is worth, here's what we've learned in this last passage:
- Never is a long time.
- Now is all we have -- any of us.
- We can't know what the future will bring; can't control it however much we might hope to do that.
- None of us know what we are capable of; what strength we might find in the face of trouble; how sturdy our will might be; how durable our hopes and dreams.
We've hit some pretty major bumps, and it seems we've survived. We are different, changed from what we once imagined, but still together, still in love, still finding our way day-to-day. For those who would look askance at our trials and tribulations; who would see our faults, failings, weaknesses, and imperfections; and say to themselves that they would NEVER find themselves in a similar circumstance -- I'd say "yet." Not "yet."