Consider What You Don’t See, Hear, and Know

This is what you see: She walks into the coffee shop and orders a coffee to go. When her order is ready, she is not satisfied. Slamming the coffee down, she demeans the barista by insulting their profession and competency.

Now consider what you do not see: At home, she is criticized by her family. Nothing she does is right. She is pursuing a new career that on the outside, seems irresponsible and impossible. Receiving no support from friends or family in her pursuits, she in turn, internalizes everything. When she looks in the mirror, all she can see is a failure.

This is what you hear: He calls his doctor’s office to schedule an appointment. When offered the soonest date, which is two weeks from now, he yells at the office receptionist. He demands to be seen that day and yells obscenities.

Now consider what you do not hear: His stomach turns in terror. Thoughts of doom spin around his mind, as he sees the mysterious lump in the mirror. He noticed it on his throat a couple days ago and it appears to be growing. His last round of chemotherapy was a decade ago. Then, the cancer seemed beatable. However now, he isn’t so sure. He is a dreamer, whose ambition to sing on Broadway may be ended by this lump. All he hears is a shattering of dreams that he hoped to accomplish.

This is what happens: The child throws a toy at their teacher who is playing with another child. The teacher takes the toy away and puts the child in the corner. The child kicks another child who was picking on them. The teacher disciplines the child again by taking away recess. When the child shares what they wants to be when they grow up, the entire class and teacher laugh. The teacher tells the child that could never happen.

Now consider what you don’t know: The child comes from a broken home. When living with either parent, the child is ignored. The child is desperate to gain attention, regardless of punishment for misbehaving. The child kicks and screams. The only attention the child receives is abuse. At home, the child draws pictures of the moon. When one of their drawings are seen, the parent crumples up the picture and laughs at the child. The child begins to believe the mocking and forgets their dream to go to the moon.

Consider what you do not See, Hear, and Know.

Madam F.

Copyright © 2014 SarahFehrenbach. All Rights Reserved.

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