Hot Dogs Are a #metoo Moment

Outside the laundromat I balanced a bun on my dashboard and applied ketchup to the cold hot dog therein. I realised I was grateful to have a car this time - remember those days of cold-hot-dog household budget? I didn't have bus money then, because I was saving quarters for the laundromat. I lived in a hotel room I rented by the week that had no kitchen. I paid extra for the refrigerator when I could afford it.

I'm doing it this time because I want to - talk about it and also eat the hot dog - because groceries are in the car and I don't want to bother with going someplace for prepared food. It's not a punishment to remember whence I came. I am grateful to know exactly how much I can survive. I wonder how it feels to have never been hungry and cold at the same time, for days or weeks on end.

If you never had those days, take a minute to consider people you know who probably did and don't talk about it. What's interesting about a hot dog story?
You never weigh someone else's struggle for them.  
A person who's never been hungry quite possibly suffered exactly that much on the Scale of Suffering when he had to wear braces. A person who's never been hungry nor worn braces may have suffered exactly that much when she saw the boy she liked kiss another girl.

A person who was touched uncomfortably by a creepy uncle and never told anybody has the right to tell you now, should he want to do so, or tell no-one. I'm not going to judge your annoyance on the Scale of Suffering - hearing these stories may be the worst thing that's ever happened to you. 

To weigh each struggle on its proximity to death isn't fair, either. If you want to go that route, there are millions of people you don't know who are currently suffering more than you are. Some of those may be completely joyous all the way up until they cease to be. That's a completely different math equation and shouldn't be lumped in with this one.

Don't minimise your own pain; don't underscore it on the Scale of Suffering. You only know how much you're suffering when something else comes along that hurts more.

Take the time to rejoice in what you've overcome. Congratulate your demons, too - they're what got you through it all.


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