The Pain in My Heart

The pain in my heart erupted today when I watched a video about bullying.

It’s a heartache that lives inside of me. Sometimes, when around acts of kindness, the goodness of the human spirit, love, it abates.

Laughter, music, animals and nature make it go away. Temporarily.

It always comes back when I hear, or read of or find out about words that hurt, acts that hurt, needlessly.

What I do to you, I do to me. I hurt you, it hurts me. I see that and so it behooves me to not do it, for my own health and sanity.

It also behooves me to learn to stretch my own compassion, when all temptation tells me not to, to see you, to see you hurting, to see you crying and broken, to see you suffering, whoever you are. When I see you, for who you are, accept you, I learn that is the only thing that can really make my heartache go away.

About The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap

The year 1895 was filled with memorable historical events: the Dreyfus Affair divided France; Booker T. Washington gave his Atlanta address; Richard Olney, United States Secretary of State, expanded the effects of the Monroe Doctrine in settling a boundary dispute between the United Kingdom and Venezuela; and Oscar Wilde was tried and convicted for "gross indecency" under Britian's recently passed law that made sex between males a criminal offense. When the news of Wilde's conviction went out over telegraphs worldwide, it threw a small Nevada town into chaos. This is the story of what happened when the lives of its citizens were impacted by the news of Oscar Wildes' imprisonment. It is chronicle of hatred and prejudice with all its unintended and devastating consequences, and how love and friendship bring strength and healing. Paulette Mahurin, the author, is a Nurse Practitioner who lives in Ojai, California with her husband Terry and their two dogs--- Max and Bella. She practices women's health in a rural clinic and writes in her spare time. All profits from her book are going to animal rescue, Santa Paula Animal Shelter, the first and only no-kill shelter in Ventura County, CA, where she lives. (see links below on Ventura County Star Article & Shelter) To find out more please go the The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap on facebook or Amazon or e-mail us at the gavatar addresses. Thank you. (photos: of Paulette, her family, and a reading at The Ojai Art Center, July 2012)
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36 Responses to The Pain in My Heart

  1. tazzielove says:

    Tolerance is it.

  2. Compassion is easy for the victims of bullying or violence. The true test of an open heart, however, is to find compassion for the aggressor. That person, too, has a back story and is a person.

    In my Buddhist mediation classes we have been talking about generosity and loving kindness. When is it easy? When do we get stuck? These are interesting questions that only we can answer for ourselves as we turn inward and reflect.

  3. cindy knoke says:

    It makes me almost physically nauseous when I think of young people selecting victims from their peer groups and systematically destroying them emotionally. They usually pick the special, different, brilliant ones. We need to look at the parenting issues in children who bully as this is not natural, but learned behavior and it is disgusting that as a culture we have allowed to reach epidemic and tragic proportions.

    • You understand this well, Cindy. I see kids in the clinic for birth control that are still wet behind the ears, in need of learning from their parents. It’s a mess and honestly, I don’t know what the solution is which really saddens me. I wish there was some ego benefit in being nice to someone who was “different” but unfortunately the ego and heart are not always in sync. But alas, I’m preaching to the choir.

      On another note, been lovely following you and your always beautiful photos. Safe travels, friend.

  4. gita4elamats says:

    Pardon me but your empathy is showing! 🙂
    I feel your pain, seriously.

  5. Just a little while ago I was out in nature doing yard work and listening to some very inspirational podcasts and feeling all was right with the world. Prior to that I was thinking of someone with cancer and wondering why there had to be so much bad stuff in the world, and nature helped me with those thoughts quite a bit. I’m reading this, and I didn’t really realize it before, because I didn’t think of it in those terms before, nor did I have anyone to talk to at the time, but I guess I was the victim of bullying when young. There was a little boy who made me miserable when I was around 8. I guess I learned to be aloof for the most part. Stuff like that happened to me quite a bit while growing up. I was really the scrawniest, far from pretty, covered with freckles, etc. Maybe I was the one who did the bullying in a past life. Who knows? I really started to bloom right before college and things started to change, although I still remained aloof. Once though I was substitute teaching and there was a little boy in special ed class. He had brought his lunch – a mason jar with milk and cornbread. I noticed all the kids, even the tough guys looking at him with love. By the way, my husband just started reading your book. He always has such a long reading list it takes him awhile to get to things.

    • I wish we could sit down with a cuppa something and have this conversation. We’d find we have a lot in common. Bless you for sharing what you did. It connects us deeper because I can relate to it personally and professionally. I grew up with a morbidly obese schizophrenic brother with bad body odor (who had very unclear sexual boundaries). Because of that I had issues with relationships in school: was kicked out of the crowd of the first friends I made, rejected from social clubs, and couldn’t have friends over to my house. On and on. I internalized a lot of his stigma and the things my parents would say about him, “He’s a nothing.” That’s a terrible thing for a parent to say but they were speaking out of their own heartache. We learn, we hurt, we take revenge (overtly or passively), we wall ourselves off, and yet somehow our heart cracks open and the light gets in then we really learn what love it, what it is to sit at the seat of our own shadow and become free. I could go on and on and on. Ever wonder why we’re drawn to different sites, people, posts? I get the feeling here with you, it’s a lovely meant to be bond. Thank you so much for this.

      p.s. thanks for letting me know your husband is reading the book. I hope he enjoys. We’re continuing to get checks to the shelter monthly – just to let you know your contribution has been passed along and somewhere there’s a happy wagging tail because of that. I honestly believe that.

  6. Heartbreakingly simple yet effective/

  7. mixedupmeme says:

    I think I may have watched the same video. Or shall I say videos. Way too many cases of abuse and bullying videos. But perhaps that is good that we are seeing so many as more attention is being given to it. I mentioned on another blog that I I have seen seniors be bullies. I went to a senior center and would play cards. It might have seemed like some were just trying to be in a ‘take charge’ mode, but it was definitely taking advantage and mean spirited and constant bullying of some members who could not or would not stand up to them. I finally stopped all my activities there.

    But it is good to have a place to discuss this issue even if only on a blog comment. Somehow it may lead to help even in one situation.

    • I remember reading what you wrote about the bullying of some of the members at the senior center and that you had left. And, I agree that it’s good to have a place to discuss this issue. We never know who will read it, in this public, forum, and perhaps be helped. One can only hope it does do some good.

      Take care, meme.

  8. “What I do to you, I do to me. I hurt you, it hurts me. I see that and so it behooves me to not do it, for my own health and sanity.” Some people don’t seem to understand they have their own health and sanity in a vice along with their victims.

    • Deep breath over here. And, a thank you for all you to do try to shine a light and bring some sanity to it all. There can never be enough of that. BTW: it was the video on bullying that you reblogged that got me going on this one. Then I got an e-mail about this 18 year old girl, Kate, in Florida (see above by gita4elamats fyi). Today’s a calmer day over here. 🙂

  9. Clowie says:

    Sometimes there seems to be so much hate in the world. Bullies are probably unhappy and taking it out on someone else, but it spirals. I don’t know how we break the cycle.

  10. FlaHam says:

    Paulette, when I was a kid, you knew who the school bully was, generally there was only one, normally he was a jock, and all you had to do was just avoid him for the most part and you were safe. Today bullying comes from many directions, from different sexes, for different reasons, completely out of the blue, and for no apparent reason. My heart goes out to those that suffer from it. Your words are so touching so meaningful, thank you for saying it as you have. Maybe someone will awake because of your words. Please take care, Bill

    • Oh God, Bill, I sure hope so–someone awake, whether from my words or from anything else. What you said is so true, it’s scary how pervasive it all is. I went to high school in the times you speak of and I never recall anything to the degree it is today. And, as Clowie and others have stated, I don’t know how to break the cycle.

      Get better, friend, and have a good weekend.

  11. WordsFallFromMyEyes says:

    Bullying is so atrocious it does, actually, drive me to tears. I wish spiritual strength to all in the face of it, and enlightenment to perpetrators.

  12. 68ghia says:

    Some people are intrinsically evil.
    some just hurt and lash out at the world around them.
    There was one episode of supernatural where exactly that was the case.
    Very difficult to find out the real reasons though…

  13. I abhor bullying. It seems often that the victim has once been a victim himself. Love needs to abound with all

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