IF I WERE THE DEVIL…

When the sweet little ol’ handyman left after fixing my roof this morning, I was in the best mood. For reasons I can’t tell you, a leaky roof makes me feel feelings I don’t enjoy. And I’ve been threatening to have it repaired for the longest time, but acute introvert over here gets the heebie jeebies whenever human beings walk onto my premises.

Side note: that last line there could also describe my love life…

So there I was. Happily answering e-mails and preparing for my next class. Butterflies were circling my head and a rainbow stretched from my mind…

Then it started. And when I thought about it later, it occurred to me that it starts often. The incomprehensible period most mornings when my friends and loved-ones seem to have come together to send me every devastating news report and viral video this side of The Rock. For about two hours my phone ding-dinged with news of racial and religious conflict, earthquakes, fires, political ridiculousness and hatred. Lots and lots of hatred.

If I were the devil I’d sit back and relax, because we are doing a fine job of representing his cause. I watched the videos and read the news reports and for the weakest moment I felt hatred rise in me too. My cheery disposition made way for gloom and anger and I felt like throwing some stuff and screaming like a toddler throwing a tantrum.

For hours I sat around with a very dark cloud stuck in my bum. Then I closed my computer and remained quiet for a moment. I guess the clever folks call it being mindful. I felt annoyed with my friends. Why do they always have to share that cerebral manure with me? I get they want to share their experiences with me, but why drag me down with them?

And I think the answer is that life is not as it used to be and they are still used to how it was. We’ve never been as consistently inundated with horrible news as we are now. And I’m not even talking about the fake freaking news! Thanks to smart phones, every negative and horrid thing are recorded for posterity and replayed over and over to etch into our minds the idea that this is how life is now.

I made the decision today that unless the forwarding of bad news can actually and meaningfully help a situation, I will no longer send around news reports and videos. Ignorance about some things can go a long way to save the little mental health we have left. There…I said it. And I didn’t say ignorance about all things. Just some things.

I have a hot bath and a chococino incoming. But first…a video or two about kittens and baby donkeys…

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