In the last few days, I stumbled across a story which made my heart break. A young man named Ryan Shtuka, went missing Saturday 17 February 2018 from Sun Peaks Village, B.C. (Canada). Ryan has not been seen since leaving a party to walk the short five minutes home.
Heather is Ryan’s loving and devoted mother and together with thousands of people, has spent the last 16 weeks and one day, searching for her son.
In addition, Heather has written words of honesty, heartache and hope. I’d like to share one particular post with you, written on 10 May 2018.
When did we become so judgemental?
I always said that I was observational, but perhaps they mean the same. Mine is just prettier because I tie a bow on top and call it by a different name.
I am not who I was.
From the moment you start to date, it is: “When are you getting married? Oooh, you know you don’t buy the cow if the milk is free…”
You take the plunge.
And then it is: “When are you having children? Oooh, you aren’t getting any younger…”
The time becomes right. The barrage of questions begins in earnest.
“What did you decide for a name? Oooh, my cousins ex-fiance had that name. I don’t like her…” and “…Are you giving birth naturally? …Oooh, I delivered and went to the gym the next day…”
You think the judgements will stop. Not true. From parenting decisions to house locations, to clothing choices, to holiday vacations… we feel as a public, we have the right to an opinion. And the right to express it. Freely.
As we grow, perhaps we wrap it in a sweeter package but the effect is still the same. In essence we say: You are different from me but we must be the same. How can we have harmony if we have diversity?
I have learned…
Each person is born and raised with a value system, unique to them and their environment. What we consider our top ten, may be someone else’s bottom five. Why can’t that be ok? What if we just accepted it? Freely.
I honestly thought my parenting decisions were based on sound, logical and common sense practices. How could I, in good conscience, not allow you to benefit from my successes? So I offered it. Freely.
I couldn’t save my son.
He was a grown adult with a mind of his own. Brilliant and vast, he was able to process and assess his own experiences and choose his own path.
February 17th, he made a decision that led us all here. Not on purpose. Not to his benefit. Much to everyone’s never ending sorrow.
But I don’t judge him for that.
Because I am not the same.
Heather’s words resonated with me and reminded me of a passage from www.aimhappy.com:
We Are All Here Together. I am no better or worse than anyone else. I am on a unique journey. Yet though I see our differences, it’s still true that we are more alike than unlike.
What I put out into the world always comes back to me. Today I offer loving kindness, positive energy and joyful service. Today I choose to leave the world and better place than I found it.
Today I ask, “How can I help?”
I know that when I lift another up, I am lifted too, because I am a part of something bigger than myself.
I honour our differences and embrace our similarities. Through my positive communion with others, I will know peace in my heart, harmony on earth, and joy in my journey.
Take these words with you as you enter a new week.
Please also share the details of Ryan’s disappearance, especially with any family / friends who were visiting or live in the area.
Love + kindness