and that can be dangerous.
I heard from an old, dear friend recently. I had checked on him, suggesting we meet for lunch, or even coffee. He said he wanted to but was swamped and would have to postpone it until things slowed down a bit in his life.
Then, the next day, he emailed to tell me he felt physically and spiritually depleted.
He’d just learned his mother has been diagnosed with Alzheimers and it had sucked the air out of his life.
Perhaps its just he and I, but I suspect not.
The endless political chasm we approach daily in America is exhausting.
And it’s not just here…The hopelessness I see on the faces of refugees in Europe, the numbed faces of the homeless everywhere.
All of it, upon reflection, is often overwhelming.
So how do you go on the air tomorrow and pretend you’re brimming with optimism and fun and laughter?
How do you drink when your well is dry?
I hate to admit it, but I don’t know. I know what I do: I walk, outdoors, detached from phone and iPod and cable news. I walk until my mind slows down and I can hear my own thoughts, my own internal prayers.
Searching for the good that is always near us but often out of our sight, I literally remind myself that when all is said and done, life endures.
At the bottoms of the oceans, life endures.
Found in meteorites buried miles deep in the frozen antarctic, life endures.
Our family trees, generations stretching back hundreds and hundreds of years, prove that life endures.
So, here’s what I know: I know that you can’t help take care of others, you can’t hope to bring smiles and tears, or laughter and joy, when you are running on empty.
Take care of yourself first. Then, you can try to replenish others.
We are hope for others. You know that intuitively. You feel it.
Find whatever way works best for you to refresh your spirit, and then use your stage to connect with one human soul hearing you.
Sometimes that’s all they need, to feel connected to another. Radio has always had a unique ability to connect one-to-one…
but you’ve got to talk to one person — each one of the tens of thousands that will hear your voice tomorrow — as if s/he is the only one, as if s/he is sitting across from you.
Not yelling, not guffawing, not reading slogans and liners as if s/he isn’t even human, as if “variety” is the most important thing in her daily grind.
Talk about life, about the themes of life.
Isn’t that what you felt called to do from the very first?