Over the past few years I have had the opportunity to spend a percentage of my time speaking to high school students at various schools in this beautiful valley that I call home. most of these students have been kicked out of at least one school or purposefully find themselves in what the school system calls the “emotionally disturbed” class. On some level they are like someone who commits a despicable crime and claims insanity, although they are obviously not insane their actions leave little room for another option. Most of these students are not emotionally disturbed they have just made the decision to try so hard to be disobedient that the school leaves little room for any other feasible option. I have drawn many conclusions about humanity over the course of these short yet action packed three years. Please notice that I have not solely concluded about the behavior of teenagers, much of my observation has been of adults. There is one major difference between a teenager and an adult [this shouldn’t be hard to figure out], you guessed it, their age. You wonder why the office that you work bears such a close resemblance to the high school that you went to, because we are a bunch of insecure, injured teens trapped in older shells.
During the time spent with these students I often think to myself, “they try so hard to be disobedient”. There is so much intention behind every action complimented by an effort that would likely equal good grades, accolades, praise and the attention that they are really seeking. I am fortunate enough to have this very close to home also, my little brother has been promised a trip to Six Flags in California, money and now a complete drum set, if he will put in the work and discipline necessary to get good grades. So far he has missed Six Flags, been unmotivated by the money and the jury is still out on the drum set. What I try to explain to him is that if he would put half of the time and effort that he does into playing Rock Band, he would have it made! I’m really pulling for him to get this drum set out of me; I think he could be a great drummer.
Here is where humanity comes in…
Last night I was working at Babbo [an Italian restaurant here in PHX] and was repulsed by seeing two “middle aged” people make-out like they had just snuck out of the prom for a little tongue wrestling session. Why they decided to lean on the car that was parked directly in front of the entrance I will never understand, maybe they too are desperate for attention. After watching this RPDA [repulsing display of affection], I began thinking about infidelity on numerous levels, prostitution, pornography addiction, strip clubs, escort services, office flings, etc. The amount of work that people put in simply for some attention is so silly. Whether that “work” be in the form of time, secrecy, money, lies, role playing, whatever it is, it has to be exhausting. And it is all in the name of attention, just like an “emotionally disturbed” adolescent. Similar to the advice I have given my little brother I would give to these adults, “if you would put half as much work into your spouse, your past, your insecurities as you do trying to run from them, you would be so happy, and surely more healthy”!
If you are reading and have not yet read Every Scar is a Bridge please go do that and start to identify these things that creep and crawl within your own heart. If we are going to work hard, let us work towards being healthy, whole, happy and honest!