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Gossip vs. Compassion

 How I Really Feel...

Gossip versus Compassion:

In 1977 upon the beginning of my 2nd year of Cross-Country running and 2nd year in high school.  There were about seven of us girls running the Saturday before Labor Day on a training run through the field areas of our high school.  I kept quiet, for the most part, listening to the girls giggle about some odd thing. They were gossipping. Basically,  I despise gossip, always have.  So, when I heard what I felt was tragic news of a former female competitor from another school...that her hopes of going to a high-end university on a scholarship were suddenly dashed, I inquired. I asked,  upon finding out that the former competitor of ours had gotten pregnant over the summer, "How...?" Of course they laughed and made fun of me. Which I handled well externally, tortured internally by their discompassionate response. However, what I thought was...I feared that maybe she was raped... Or somehow fell into a bad place.   I didn't know her well, however,  what I saw was a brilliant mind, a young woman with athletic ability and an  incredible beauty about her, yet not something to be envied...something to be admired. These other six girls, four were quite atrocious in their making fun of her...why? Because the boys on our team some thought the competitor from another school was beautiful,  they may have even had the 'hots' for her.  Today those same girls, now perhaps women, I have no clue where they are but like back then, like most people...they still just don't get it... And if you don't give compassion, you may eventually never know how to receive it when you need it the most.---Jody-Lynn Reicher 

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