• Drew Clayborn

Who Are We?

This blog has always been a way for me to express and organize my thoughts in order to get an understanding of how I’m feeling. This time I don’t know if that is the best approach. Rather, I’ll try the reverse. Say how I’m feeling, and see if I’m able to wrap my brain and thoughts around how I feel.

My heart hurts. I can usually feel the abundance of love and beauty constantly flowing through our world. Whipping and circulating in the air like the dance of a flock of starlings. Yet my heart hurts because I’m feeling it less and less. In a normal situation I would usually say I feel alone because no one else can feel love that I do. I think we take it for granted how much love we’re capable of giving each other. We take for granted the spark of fire in our hearts that can catch and spread like wildfire. I have often said that I don’t believe that people are innately good or bad. “Good” people do bad things and “Bad” people do good things. I still feel this way. Yet the thing I want to emphasize right now is just how each of us are capable of inflicting extreme love and hate on one another. Astronomical joy and happiness or world shattering hurt and pain. It’s our choice which we choose. Whether deliberately or inadvertently.

By no means am I perfect at this. I have hurt those around me in grand fashion. Every time I do, it instantly ricochets back. I feel their pain and hurt as if it were my own. I try my absolute hardest to remember that hurt. Figure out exactly why I caused it. How I caused it. Make sure it doesn’t happen again. Yet it still does. Whether I don’t want to or don’t mean to there’s times I hurt someone. Life has the utmost ability of throwing things at us that we never expected, that felt unavoidable at the time, and we’re forced to navigate, and deal with, and process all that comes from it. My heart hurts. Not just for myself but for those around me. Some may say I’m an empath.

I can tell you a funny story to give more context. When I was about 5 or 6 years old, I was hanging out with my older brother and his friends while they play basketball. During the activities, one of the other guys started teasing me and messing with me. My brother walks over, and punches him in the stomach with all his force. You could hear him make a gut wrenching noise as all the air went rushing out of his lungs and his body contorted to the ground. If you’ve ever seen someone or experienced getting the wind knocked out of you, you know exactly what I’m talking about. So little me is off to the side, watching as this all plays out, and as soon as I heard the sound of the punch landing I had an uncontrollable sick feeling in my own stomach and immediately started crying and screaming “why Jr!?” Immediately, now I was the butt of the joke. Everyone started laughing! Laughing at the fact that I was crying so much even though I wasn’t the one that got hit! Everyone except the kid that received the punch. I don’t think I’ll ever forget his face as he looked over at me. It was a face of both confusion or shock but also appreciation that someone gave a shit.

It’s a funny story but I think there’s things that can be taken from it. So often, there’s areas in our society we condemn those who care about others. Who try to empathize to what others may be feeling. As if it’s a sign of weakness. I think we all could use some weakness right now. Vulnerability is the playground humanity can be truly seen. Show those around us that we give a shit about their feelings, concerns, and what they’re going through. Open ourselves up to feeling their pain. Make the choice to give joy and happiness to everyone we encounter, including ourselves. Bring some love back into the air.

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