30 March 2017

Do You See Yourself In The Reflective People?

1 Corinthians 13: 11-12

My earliest memorable encounter with a person with questionable mental health was at a magazine rack in a grocery store my mother would frequent.

The magazine rack was a welcomed stop for me after following my mom around the store in boredom while she picked out food items.

I would on occasion find an older woman replacing the magazines in their proper location.

Customers sometimes do not return a magazine they rifle through to its ordered place.

I first thought the woman worked there.

But after hearing her making a particular noise in her mouth without much expression on her face as she managed the magazine rack, I thought twice.

Some years later while attending a public school, I would see a group of children being taught separately from the rest of us.

These had their unique mental health challenges.

On one occasion, while out on the field doing some physical activity for gym class, I saw off in the distance a very tall and lanky kid running away from one of the special education teachers, yelling out that she was going to kill him.

It was initially laughable, but as I watched them meander all over the football field, I realized it wasn't a game he was playing with the teacher, but somehow he did believe to be in fear for his life.

It seems the older I get, the more mental health issues I see in people I come across.

Where I currently reside I see many people who may have fallen out of society due to drug abuse, or previous abuse of some kind, or perhaps they had been challenged their entire lives.

There is one small community that caters to such individuals.

I think it is an extension of the type of situation I saw in school.

These residents are supported by the government and live in a particular apartment building.

But this example is such a small number compared to the many people I see out and about, seemingly out of their minds or on the brink of such madness.

What is interesting and arguably unfair is how a person's mental idiosyncrasies are judged according to an economic bias.

The unusual billionaire is sometimes labeled an “eccentric” while the unusual homeless person is a “lunatic”.

One may be surrounded by servants looking to prevent the next lawsuit or to cover up the next aggravated assault, while the other is possibly the victim of and also purveyor such activities.

When one begins to look closely at the manner everyone speaks, or views the world, or expresses their value sets, and mentions the things they believe to be true or false, it is possible to conclude that many more individuals suffer from some level of mental challenge.

I think that mental health is a sliding scale and we may all be on some place of the spectrum.

No single person is absolutely immune from any affect the world, their parents, society or the environment has had on them.

If we include our own idiosyncrasies, our questionable rationality or dubious perceptions, we may find ourselves being one of the multitude of cracked porcelain as we arrogantly lament over the obvious broken pieces on the ground.

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