We heard the adage perhaps when we were young: "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never hurt me." It conveys an important lesson about knowing your inner strength and self-love. But with suicide due to bullying and online trolling, the message does not get receieved or believed. Offensive texts can hurt and cause a lot of suffering- sometimes even death.
Back when I was a kid if someone said something unkind to you, it stung... but the insults of the bully soon echoed away and Ajax or Comet cleaned whatever malice message marked your locker door. Nowadays, however, memes and mean posts live in cyberspace forever.
There was another playground phrase we employed to defend ourselves from a verbal tyrant: "I'm rubber and you are glue; everything you say bounces off of me and sticks to you!" It had a nice rhyming technique, no? 😜
Among others, we have two powerful tools: teflon and velcro. At times it's good to be "non-stick" and merely notice what's going on without reacting (or posting) which only compounds negative feelings.
At other times, it's good to let things "cling" to you:
the spangle of autumn
the text pic of a newborn infant
the sound of an old song or new catchy tune
the scent of leaves
the redness of Mars in the night sky
a cute bumper sticker
the taste of homemade pizza or freshly baked cookies
the feel of water showering your body after yardwork or a run.
Is it too morbid to ask: At the end of our lives, will we want to be nursing old wounds or just blessedly grateful for having been PRESENT to many beautiful moments?
Take a look this afternoon and this weekend: what do you choose to cling to and what can you let go of?