Cafe Hitch-hike


Bringing myself to the table

I once read a poster in a high school psychology classroom that said, "just because you're paranoid doesn't mean they are out to get you."

On that vein, I'd like to say just because I have issues doesn't mean I'm always wrong.

Just because I have my own challenges doesn't mean I'm the one who always makes the mess.

I may be afraid, but sometimes the fear is real.

Sometimes I'm sad, and damn, it sometimes means I really do have something to cry about.

Sometimes I'm actually able to manage my moods (go me!), and sometimes things really don't sink in and just drift away for me to forget.

Like what things? Um, I forget!

Sometimes I am able to assure people. Brighten their day. Make them smile. Make them laugh. Show them a perspective they never considered. Sometimes I do make others happy.

Sometimes I can show others a great time!

Sometimes I'm attentive and there for others. Hell, I've been able to impart my wisdom (hahahaha) to those older than me, give them a fresh perspective, or at least empathy for what they are going through.

Sometimes I've assured younger people that they are making good decisions, and I try to help them keep up the faith when they are struggling. Sometimes I've told them I am proud of them.

Sometimes I warn them how their actions will have consequences that last for quite some time.

I've comforted people when they felt sad. I once prayed in a train station with a newly arrived Mexican immigrant who was just starting out. In my broken Spanish, we prayed she would find a safe home, good friends, a job she likes, and for God to be with her. I also made people feel welcomed in a new scene or setting.

I taught people a lot of things, whether I intended to or not.

My students (usually the ones of color) do seek my advice and assurance. They really open my heart because I remember being in their shoes so vividly.

Sometimes, people where just plain happy for me being me and only bringing myself to the table.

I once joked to my Uncle Joe, "come on over and don't worry about a thing. Just bring yourself." He didn't have to bring anything like food, drink, or gifts. All that was needed was him to be present!

In bringing myself to the table, I try to focus on the good without having the bad foul it up. Whatever the case, it's reassuring when I can feel inside that everything is alright and it's perfectly ok to be me and freely give what I can, and truly be a part of something.

downwind | upstream