Recently, my heart was broken.
Broken not for myself, but for women – and how we treat other women.
Let me give you the back story. Two blogging friends of mine wrote articles that resonated with women in such a way that they were shared time and time again, and spread around the world.
My sweet friend Cari wrote We Can’t Be Friends, on the authenticity of friendship and the importance of being real with each other.
Tracy wrote a letter to Nordstrom about a pillow, on the messages we see and what we let slide.
They were both written well and from the heart. And many people loved them.
But oh – the way so many people tore them to shreds. And the way commenters tore each other to shreds. It broke me. The unkindness. The cruelty. The needlessness of it all.
Here’s the thing: we are more alike than we are different. When we start screaming at each other that our opinions are better than others, that you must be wrong because I sure cannot be anything but right, that I must hurt you to be heard, we are missing out on potentially beautiful connections.
Cari and I are different. She is an introvert. I recharge by being with others. We could let this difference get in the way of our friendship.
But our oldest and youngest girls are the same age. We have similar parenting philosophies. Like me, she has a heart for missions and for making an impact on the world for good. Our faith connects us. We both love Zumba… the list goes on.
We have more in common than we do not. And I would miss out by overlooking her because she is quieter than I.
Tracy and I are different. She is an atheist. My faith is an integral part of my life. I could dismiss her because of this difference.
But we both have our babies entering kindergarten this fall. Each of us loves photography, fashion, and writing. We have histories with eating disorders that makes us think about the way we parent our girls. And wine – we both love that.
We have more in common than we do not. And I would miss out by overlooking her because she doesn’t share my faith.
When we scream at others that they are in the wrong, that our belief set is right, we miss out. We miss finding deeper connections.
We need one another.
I have never been reminded of that more than this past year.
A year in which I had several deaths in the family and had to rely on other women to care for my children as I caught last minute flights out to mourn.
A year in which I had surgery and was forced into a two week bed rest. Two weeks of relying on other women to get my children where they needed to be. To feed them. To clothe them. And to care for me.
I need other women in my life.
I cannot be the person who looks at the lady passing me in the Target aisle and picks her apart in my mind, because if I do, I may be missing out on another potentially beautiful connection.
Don’t be that person either. I don’t want you missing out.
The flowers my friends have given me while on bed rest are completely different from one another. But each one is beautiful, right? Let’s look for the beauty in one another.
It’s worth it, I promise.