June 23rd, 2021
If you want to make an adult suspicious, be nice to them.
That sounds counterintuitive, but it’s not.
Common wisdom tells us that as we get older, we are required to become less naive, more cautious, and to refrain from being blindly kind to people in order to prove to others that we are mature adults and not gullible children.
We are expected to trust no one, no system or organization or human being, because trusting things is stupid. In fact, if you find yourself trusting someone and you get let down, we’ve become conditioned to blame the person who had trust and not the person who broke it.
Let me tell you something.
I’ve spent time with garbage folk and have dabbled in being garbage folk myself. And every time I betrayed someone’s trust, it said nothing about them, and everything about me.
I genuinely like being nice to people. I also like trusting them. And on a regular basis, when I’m doing one, the other, or both, people will comment that I must be that way because I’m not old enough to have truly experienced the world for what it is, and that someday (you watch!) I, too, will be a jaded, weary soul.
When the truth is, I’ve already been to the bottom of that well, and I choose to embrace radical empathy, compassion, kindness and trust, anyway.
We are all going to end up at the bottom of the sea eventually, and you get to choose the ship you sink on.
We went on the carousel today. Check out this cat I rode. He’s carrying a fish in his mouth, clearly a gift for any weary rider who finds themselves on his back. Some people might call this cat dumb; not everyone deserves a meal, and not every stranger deserves kindness.
The cat disagrees. He is happy to serve, and he doesn’t believe that your suspicion makes you smart, or mature. He knows there are more fish in the sea, and he won’t stop sharing, or trusting, until it’s the last thing he ever does.