Today I have a confession to make.
It would be so much easier to do this if I were Catholic.
I'm not, so I can only imagine how it would be.
Rather than tossing and turning with the guilt I have been feeling
the last few days,
I would have just jumped in the car, gone to the church,
'fessed up to the Priest, done my time and felt completely absolved.
But alas, I am not Catholic and yes, I get that I could pray
and ask for forgiveness and yada yada but somehow,
that just doesn't seem to cut it for me.
I just can't let it GO.
So, today you are my priests and this is my confession.
It's been 40 years and 7 months since my last confession.
Okay, all kidding aside, here we go.
One of my kids (who shall remain nameless)
came home from school last week and was really sad.
A couple of other children had something really hurtful
My child was sad and hurt;
in turn, I was absolutely FURIOUS with the other kids.
I did my best to comfort said child of mine
and in doing so, I told him/her:
"Those kids are just mean. They are mean kids
who are just being nasty.." etc etc.
Days later, that conversation is haunting me.
You see, in my small high school, in my sophomore or junior year,
a new kid came to our class.
Being that there were only 40 kids in my graduating class,
this was news.
But this kid named Doyle Grogan was different.
Really, really different.
Now, looking back on it, I would say with a great deal of certainty
that he fell somewhere on the autistic spectrum-
I think he was probably very, very smart.
But as a kid, what I saw was someone who was disheveled and unkempt,
who kept to himself and muttered constantly aloud
and was completely odd.
Sadly, even in a Christian school, this made him a target.
To my knowledge, no one was physically mean to him
but really, I think we were meaner because we were emotionally mean.
We laughed at him, teased him and made fun of him.
To write that makes me feel awful.
Not surprisingly, after a year
Doyle Grogan was gone.
Maybe he moved, maybe we ran him out.
Looking back now, I am not sure why I behaved that way.
I don't think I am mean person.
What made me feel like it was okay to demean someone and find it funny?
Did that make me feel better about myself?
It might have then, perhaps, but it sure has backfired now.
So, I'm not sure that helped me feel better.
But, I do want to say this,
in a final attempt to absolve myself:
Doyle Grogan, if you are out there,
I am so sorry that I was mean to you
in high school.
You didn't deserve it
and I should have known better.