There’s an image going around of a mother sitting in an airport looking at her phone. Her baby is lying on a blanket on the floor at her feet.
On first glance, it elicits a knee-jerk response to judgement.
I saw it on facebook along with a barrage of judgement and name calling and oh… absolutely no compassion.
One photo and this poor woman became infamous.
And it got me to thinking about how that happens every day. Social media has opened a platform for all of us to comment and voice our opinions, relevant or not. It gives us a sense of power and it gets abused.
I want to flip things around. I want each of us to pause before commenting. Think before sharing. To NOT take the photographs. Ask the hard questions:
Is it KIND?
Is it HELPFUL?
Is it TRUE?
And if that doesn’t work, ask yourself how you’d feel if you were on the receiving end. Wouldn’t compassion be your preference?
With all the shit going down in the world, with all the divides and lines that are being drawn, wouldn’t it be incredible to maybe start erasing them? Because you know what? We can. It starts with each of us.
It starts right here. With me. And it starts with you.
Oh, and as for that woman? She had been caught up in Delta’s computer shut down. Stuck in an airport for twenty hours with an infant.
If you’ve ever been a parent to a baby, you know that you can only hold them for so long. They need to stretch and roll and just be. That they are heavy and wiggly and sometimes the floor is the best place for them.
It turns out she was being a good parent in a very difficult time.
Compassion would have made the aftermath of that photo that much easier. True compassion wouldn’t have taken the photo at all.