The other day I was walking Bear, my dog, we walked by a couple walking their who stopped me to warn us against walking down the next block because there was a crazy woman sitting on a stoop screaming at the dogs passing by.
I looked over and saw the woman at a distance and a sense of sadness washed over me. I thought to myself, she must be in a lot of pain to be screaming at the dogs and people walking by, yet what people perceive is insanity and craziness. I had the urge to extend a gesture of humanity and kindness by sitting with her to listen to her story. Yet, I didn’t because I feared how she’d react to my presence.
I still think about that woman a week later, if we showed more interest in what our fellow humans are going through, we would begin to see pain instead of insanity, and perhaps there would be less episodes of violence in the world. Perhaps people would feel they had more of a support system. Maybe we cannot change the whole world, but I feel like interest in others vulnerabilities and pains is a good place to start.