Monday, July 14, 2008

Consequences and a true story

What is normality? A recent conversation shot this question into my mind and triggered an interest to dig deep. Now, I am not here to make myself look perfect AT ALL, because we all know that I am very far from that, but I do know that what some would call “common” things that everyone tries as least once I have never done. Such as, get drunk, get high, have sex, try different drugs, etc. Never have I done or experimented with any of that. Again, I am not here to make myself look good. I just simply don’t understand why all of this is considered “normal” now. It's quite sad and such an empty life to lead.

Someone recently said to me, “Amber, you’re very abnormal.” I am?! Wow, I guess I am. I guess in today’s society everyone has to try it even if it’s just once. It’s not enough for them to see the brutal consequences from the sidelines; oddly enough they have to feel them too. Reminds me of a story…

When I was about 8 years old, my family was visiting a tiny town way up in the mountains of West Virginia called “Webster Springs”. My dad was a traveling evangelist when I was growing up (as He still is) and we often would go to various towns and churches and accompany him and occasionally grace the audience with our oh so wonderful singing abilities. Such great fun (especially when you’re forced…ha). This particular Sunday morning my mom had all three of us dressed up so adorably to show us off as her most prized possessions. I was 8 at the time, Ashton, 6 and Hannah was about 3. We were all dolled up and ready as we made our way out the door of the Pastor’s house we were staying at and mom got us into the car. However, she apparently forgot to get something and dad was also still inside so she went back in to collect whatever it was she needed. She left us in the car unattended and said something like “Amber, make sure everyone stays in the car”, you know since I’m the eldest I got that a lot. Anyways, me being the absolute and total nosey little girl that I was began rummaging through my dad’s glove compartment; I always wanted to know what he kept inside that little box. I encountered a bunch of papers, napkins, some tapes and something that resembled that which my dad used to spray in his mouth before he preached to freshen his breath. In my curiosity I carefully pulled back the leather flap that was covering the nozzle and pressed my fingers as hard as I could on the top right into my mouth. Suddenly I let out the most shrill little scream as tears began to pour from my eyes, I continued screaming and crying and shaking and I got out of the car and just started jumping up and down as the screaming and crying persisted. So, what does Ashton do? She just couldn’t bear the thought of me experiencing something that she hasn’t so she took the bottle and did the exact same thing, well needless to say more screams and crying erupted as she too felt the horrific pain and agony as I. No, it doesn’t stop there. I guess Ashton thought Hannah should know what it felt like as well, or maybe she thought misery wanted some more company, so she of course gives little Hannah a fair share of this death spray. You can imagine the sight my poor parents beheld in approaching the car, three dressed up little girls with swollen lips, blood red faces and eyes screaming and crying. They had no idea what was going on that is until my dad looked into the car and saw his pepper spray lying opened in the seat. Fortunately we had not consumed enough for it to be dangerous, just enough to feel the horrible consequences. My mom quickly ran back inside and got three wet washcloths and filled them with ice and would you believe that she sat us all three on the front row that Sunday morning, puffy eyes and faces with rags hanging out of our mouths? I imagine that we gave my dad a well illustrated sermon that morning. I’m just proud to admit that I wasn’t the one who saw the horrific pain the spray caused but still sprayed it in my mouth!

There you have it. I couldn’t have said it better. What is it about knowing what it “feels” like? Personally, when I see someone get burnt from a hot stove, I don’t go and press my hand on it! What’s the difference?

My heart goes out to the family and friends of the young man from here who just recently lost his life due to a drug overdose. How sad. Today I saw a comment on his myspace from one of his friends and it said “Man, why? I’m sorry man, we all knew that you had too much last night and you needed to stop. I just can’t believe this happened. I am so sorry…” His friends knew he was past his limits, maybe they egged him on and then realized it had gone too far and then it was too late. The infamous question, “How far is too far?”, I’d say he went too far that night. Now, it’s too late. Nothing can be done, a life has ended.

Consequences can be a brutal thing, sometimes deadly. Be careful and take it from me, it’s much better to learn from someone else’s mistakes as opposed to your own because then it might be too late. Don’t take life lightly, it’s fragile and we’re never promised tomorrow.

No comments: