Walk a mile in someones shoes

8 August 2016

As we grow our experiences teach us lessons and shape how we view the world. In Plato’s “Allegory of the Cave,” he uses the example of the prisoners to show how our view of the world changes when we are faced with new information that contradicts the reality we thought we knew. The world as I viewed it completely changed when a close friend committed suicide. I learned the true meaning of what it means to “walk a mile in someones else shoes”. Its a saying we all know, but when it comes to actually understanding why someone is the way they are its easier to label them as weird, annoying, or rude. To walk in someone else’s shoes means to put yourself in others position to understand their feelings or actions, no matter what the circumstance is.

Homecoming queen, captain of the cheerleading team, and honors student were a few of my proud labels in high school.

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I had amazing friends, and an amazing family; I was blessed in every aspect of my life. I can remember being and school and hearing girls complain about the upcoming prom, and watching as a guy would lash out on a teacher. Their actions perplexed me as I labeled them weird and crazy. The truth was they weren’t weird, the girl complaining about prom had never been asked as a date, and the boy yelling at the teacher had so much anger built up from his abusive father that he lashed out on any form of authority. I was blinded from reality because I hadn’t viewed life from their experiences. But that all quickly changed the fall of my junior year.

October second I awoke like any other day to get ready for school. Reaching for my phone to quite my alarm clock I was bombarded with endless text messages. As my eyes wandered over the words “I’m so sorry for your lose” my heart jumped out of my chest. My mind raced trying to figure out what had happened.

As I ran to find my mother down stairs, her faced buried in her hands I knew my life was about to take a big turn. WIth panic burning through my body I sat down as my mother uttered the horrifying news that my friend Emily had killer herself the night before. In that single moment I watched as my life as I knew come crashing down. It was a moment of disbelief, anger, and sadness colliding in my body. The hours that preceded were a blur ; they were filled with phone class, hugs, and endless speeches about how everyone was sorry but I was numb to it all.

My mind took me on a journey through her life as I tried to figure out how the beautiful, powerful, and loving girl I had once knew had been that sad with life. I never fully grasped what made her that sad, but I better understood her actions. Emily had a strong personality and many times she would snap at me daily for reasons that didn’t seem that big, she constantly grumbled about her family, and was easily angered by life’s smallest mishaps. When it was happening I just thought she was over reacting, but now i see she had so much emotion built up that thats how it came out. I always wonder if I would have tried to understand why she was like that if I could have saved her. Losing Emily taught me that you never know what anyone is going through no matter how close you are.

Actions are results of our emotions, so to understand someones actions is to better understand that person. For the girl that took your parking spot this morning she is grieving the lose of her husband, for the man that messed up your coffee, he is fighting an addiction, for the women who was rude to you in line, she just needs someone to tell her her life is going to work out. People are not rude to be rude, they don’t purposely mess up your order, everyone is going through something and we need to step back and realize that.

As Plato explains in “Allegory of the Cave,” our view of the world changes when we are faced with new information that contradicts the reality we thought we knew. My reality was changed with the passing of Emily. The tragedy was horrifying, but its taught me a life changing lesson. I learned how to walk in someone else’s shoes, to understand their feels and actions. Everyone is going through things and we may never know what it is, but if we can step back and try to see the world through their view we can better understand their actions.

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Walk a mile in someones shoes. (2016, Aug 26). Retrieved June 16, 2019, from https://newyorkessays.com/essay-walk-a-mile-in-someones-shoes/
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