We are all connected

In inspiration by Marijo Cuerrier

The sudden passing, and possible suicide of Robin Williams this past Monday was a shock to many. As I write this, it has been 2 days since the world became intimate with not only his tragic end, but also aspects of his life leading up to his death.
For me personally, it rocked my world. Not because I was a huge Robin Williams fan, although I certainly enjoyed him as an artist, but more because it made me realize how profoundly similar and connected we all are. We all have fears. We all struggle with our internal selves. We all have choices to make. But what really hit me is how easy it is to pass judgment on another human being. We only have the capacity of knowing what life feels like in our own skin. Some of us have the gift of compassion and can have an understanding of why people do what they do, but truly we don’t know what it’s like to live a day, let alone a lifetime in someone else’s shoes.
A mantra I have lived by for most of my adult life has been “the only thing you have control over is your reaction”. Today, in memory of a brilliant actor, whose death will change the face of mental illness forever, I am spending some personal time reflecting on all the people, both strangers and people close to me, that I have negatively judged or labeled and gently reminding myself that I don’t walk in their shoes, I don’t know their thoughts, I don’t know all the answers and that they have their own journey to walk, even in death.