Things I’ve learned in a political pandemic year

In 2020 I’ve had plenty of time to think about the pandemic, politics, natural disasters, and human rights. In the process, I’ve learned a lot about myself, and specifically how I react to others.

Three months ago I blocked a long-time friend on Facebook because he continued to post political propaganda that I viewed as negative, divisive, and verifiably false. In the ensuing weeks, I did a lot of introspection, looking within myself and examining my reactions to what others post online. I discovered some important truths about myself, including the reality that:

  • I’m not as tolerant as I once thought I was.
  • I’m not as forgiving as I hope to be.
  • I do more talking than listening.
  • Good friendships are based upon much more than agreement on political issues.

So, I sent my old friend a new request to connect. He accepted, but immediately sent a private message asking, “Did you friend me on purpose? If so, I’ll do my best to be worthy of your friendship.”

I shared some of what I’d learned about myself, and we are now friends again. And we will remain friends, in spite of our different political views.

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