Forgotten – a word utilized efficiently and more challenging to prevent. I think of the forgotten children that are in the foster system. They long for good, not abusive homes, yet they become abandoned more times than people want to discuss. These children are no longer infants, and many people don’t want the older children. That doesn’t make them less loving or worthwhile. These children are lost voices to many, with only a small minority breaking the patterns they were born. We could not begin to understand what children in the system go through unless we walked in their shoes. It is not an easy path.

Animals become abandoned when people can no longer care for them. They, too, provide unconditional love and acceptance, and their hearts break when they are forgotten and left to die. I wanted to raise awareness with today’s blog about those that society overlooks. Both groups of people and animals struggle with being forgotten. They each contain a single denominator – love. It’s one thing to forget things like assignments, documents, appointments, projects, and other areas in our lives. But it always amazes me at the conversations I see about essential issues we face daily.

I listen to both sides of the argument about pro-choice. I have complicated issues on this matter. If a woman is dealing with medical problems and the doctor doesn’t think it’s safe for the woman to deliver a baby, I can support abortion. I can also support abortion in cases of rape, incest, and severe deficiencies. I believe it should be the mother of the child’s choice to decide what she believes is best for her. That is not saying I believe abortion should become used like birth control. I have watched many children who were in the foster system try to become placed to no avail. Instead, I’ve seen these children have their hearts broken because they thought they would have a home when in reality, they stayed in the system. Why is our system so insistent on making it easier to have a child biologically than allowing good people who want children to adopt? I have tried many times to adopt and not had the monetary means to make it happen. Adoption is expensive. In the end, my dream of adoption has had to become forgotten. Many children have experienced their dreams disintegrating before their eyes. I’m not alone in that quest. I can’t tell you how many people have tried to adopt and been discouraged because the system fails many families.

On the flip side, I think about babies that are never born and forgotten. They didn’t ask to become terminated. Every life is fragile and should be respected, but that doesn’t always happen the way we want. What is the correct answer? I don’t think any of us will ever agree on this topic. There are too many variables. People have to make decisions on what’s right for them. It’s their life, and while the rest of us may not agree with what a person chooses, we can’t live someone else’s life. I think we all have forgotten what it’s like to walk a mile in someone else’s shoes. It’s not easy. We can’t assume to be a know-it-all. What we can do is use empathy and compassion for others. We can be there when others feel alone.

Most importantly, we can listen, and we can stop judging others for decisions they made in life. When we all make mistakes, we wrestle with our emotions and how to make things better. If we can’t fix our errors, we learn how to move forward and change our lives so that those mistakes don’t repeat.

One of my biggest pet peeves is people who take in animals, discard them when they get age, or don’t want to take care of them anymore. Animals have personalities. They feel, express emotions, and offer unconditional love and acceptance. When they are abused and abandoned, they become forgotten. Many people in this world are compassionate and come to aid the ones that are being located. It’s not enough. Many feel that they can treat animals in any way that they wish. We have to learn that how we treat animals can reflect how we treat others. Even humans are part of the animal kingdom. We live with nature. Even those in populated cities deal with insects and animals. Kindness goes a long way.

If someone hurts us, it’s difficult to forget what happened. It does no good to dwell on that pain because it won’t fix the pain it caused. We forgive and forget because it’s the best thing for us. It doesn’t matter what other people think or feel because you are in charge of yourself. Each of you leaves a mark on this world. You aren’t a number or statistic, despite what companies may say. You are people of worth and bring unique skillsets to difficult conversations. Your perspectives are needed in society because when we look at coins with two sides and don’t see the imperfections or acknowledge them, we forget something valuable. Look around you. Do you see people neglected and forgotten? Animals that may be wandering and need a home? Be a part of the solution so that others see you remembered to make a difference. Sometimes it’s the little things that take us into a world where being remembered means more than being invisible and forgotten. Have a great day, everyone.

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