On the Genuine Decency and Kindness of Human Beings

One of the deep and profound lessons I have learned while dealing with the grief of losing my wife is just how decent, nice, good, and kind most people are when they learn that a fellow human has suffered a great loss. It is so easy to lose sight of that with all the cynicism and hate I feel surrounded by and bombarded with on a daily basis. I have received so much support, sympathy, and empathy from other people when they learn of my situation. It’s little things like the saleswoman at Carmax who happened to know I was there selling my wife’s car before a move home, touching my shoulder lightly and saying “this must be so difficult for you. I’m so sorry for your loss.” The cab driver who after dropping me off at my home asked if I needed anything at the grocery store. He was going to stop there next and told me how hard it was for him to even leave the house to shop when he lost his brother. The sympathy cards full of genuine sadness and real emotion from relatives you last heard from when they sent you five bucks for your tenth birthday. All these small things add up and have had a real positive impact on me. I don’t think I had totally lost faith in humanity but I certainly hadn’t given the topic much thought lately. I recall thinking or even saying something like “humanity sucks, everyone is only out for themselves and to make a buck” not that long ago. I’ve been looking for the tiniest glimmer of light amidst all this darkness. It’s not pitch black after all.

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Research scientist (Ph.D. micro/mol biology), Thought middle manager, Everyday junglist, Selecta (Ret.), Boulderer, Cat lover, Fish hater

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