all of the selves we Have ever been
Dear Friends of All of the Selves,
Some years ago I was at a conference on building resilience in youth. One of the conference speakers, a PhD I will call Jason, shared his own story of growing up in foster care. Jason’s childhood was filled with uncertainty and lack of connection as he moved from place to place. As Jason grew older, he became a distracted student and class clown. Jason told of a particular incident during his high school years.
Jason was fooling around in class as he usually did. The teacher became infuriated and called Jason out into the hallway. Jason got mouthy with the teacher, and the teacher lost control slapping Jason across the face. Jason reported that he had severe acne as a youth and that the teacher’s slap was so forceful that it popped the pimples on Jason’s face.
As you might imagine, we all gasped at hearing this story. What proved to be more memorable was what the slap meant to Jason. Jason stated that he was not horrified by the slap because for the first time in his life, Jason felt like someone saw him, and Jason desperately needed to be visible to someone.
I am not an advocate of slapping people in the face, but I do believe it is important that we do more than just acknowledge others, that we show an interest in them and their lives. The ultimate form of disrespect is to treat someone as though they are invisible.
Through these blog posts I have tried to make visible some of the remarkable people who have shaped my life. I have shared my thoughts and experiences in hopes of connecting with others. Technology allows us to connect with people we cannot see, to make ourselves and others visible. Perhaps that explains much our fascination with social media.
It has been a month since I began writing these daily posts. Today, I pause to ask you to talk to me. Let me know what brought you to this website and why you return. Tell me something about a self or all of the selves that you have ever been. You can reach me by sharing a comment, liking a post, or using the contact tab and sending me a longer message.
I thank you for showing an interest in me, my ideas, my experiences, and the people and things I have loved. I know your time is valuable. Thank you for sharing it with me. I look forward to seeing you.