Geese and Ducks…and a Great Blue Heron were my entertainment this morning. Since I have retired…which is heading toward 12 years…I have relished the magnificence of nature. Sometimes I smoke an evil cigar while I photograph God’s Creation. Life is so much more than working for the Yankee Dollar…

Fragile we are… no matter what we tell ourselves. We actually are the unique combination of tremendous resilience and the fragility of the china in a china shop…with a Bull patrolling the aisles. The John Wayne macho ideal of the old west men and women…does not reveal the whole story. Often we fail to consider each other…when each other is all that we have. In my younger adult years, I often said that we humans are a combination of dirt and water…that makes mud. The Bible says that we are fearfully and wonderfully made.

Disturbed I am when I see wonderful productive people…marginalized in their employment. I worked to change that destructive paradigm during my over a 32-year career with Southern Illinois University @ Carbondale. I witnessed on a daily basis staff who were lauded and applauded due to their rhetoric and macho machinations…while others labored silently in the dark…unrecognized and unappreciated.

Mental Illness is hidden in our society…and unrecognized and often mislabeled as behavioral issues that law enforcement should address. It is not, ‘Having a bad day…’ We are members of a sick society that refuses to acknowledge its’ illness. The answer is not being tougher…or bucking-up…or more macho in the mix… Today, there is no shame in being diagnosed with cancer…but there once was a stigma associated with this disease. Mental illness is not something to hide from or to turn our heads from…but to embrace with all of the sensitivity that all physical illnesses are embraced.

Terrible are the times that we live in. Stress and angst are our companions…24/7… Human Help…and a Community of Helpers…and Understanding…and Friendship…are what is in order.

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