It takes much tolerance to live together. Anyone who is living with others knows that. Family life is a bit like negotiating sea changes; sometimes it’s smooth, sometimes it’s choppy.
All parents know this. Couples know this. Families know this. In fact, my single friends know this too, as they listen to my dilemmas and family challenges and count their single blessings.
But I know my own blessings come family shaped. And when my two delightful family shapes are home again, as they recently have been, my blessings are rich despite the inevitable choppy bits.
These take some negotiating. There’s times I’m trying to calm rippled feelings and no doubt times I’m causing them! Mostly though, they are just ripples of laughter that permeate the house.
This is what family life – in fact all life with others – is about; storms, ripples and rainbows as we accommodate living together, whether that’s on a family scale, a friend and colleague scale, or population scale. In order for us all to live together we have to tolerate each others differences, learn to give and take, build understanding of and empathy for those with different ideas from our own, educate ourselves to be compassionate, curious, considerate and kind. Above all practice respect for one another.
So I rather fear for peoples when we have someone in charge of a major populace who lacks most of those characteristics, instead who openly practices racism, sexism, bigotry and a disrespectful style of communicating with others he fails to understand.
Is that the family climate Trump grew up in? And is it the kind of global togetherness he endorses?
I have to not concern myself too much with it; it’s too depressing a thought.
What I can concern myself with instead is the practices which I believe perpetuate love, respect and togetherness, as we all can. Right from our family doorsteps, throughout all our relationships, both online and in the flesh, so that these actions spread out from us and make our world a more loving and inclusive place.
I believe that always starts at home. With our relationships at home. It certainly should be part of our parenting and education.
Learning to love and live well together is the most important part of our human existence. You can look up any knowledge on Google – you can only learn about love and peace through experience. It should be the most important part of family development, education and politics – but I don’t bear to think about that right now.
I’ll just continue to go on loving and respecting my precious family shapes so they can in turn pass that on around.