hallI’m in the hallway. A time of transition. I hear our kids don’t do well with transitions. Not that many people do. Do you? I don’t. Unless I know what’s coming. Or unless I’m pretty sure I’m going to like what’s coming.

They say it’s hell here, right? When one door closes, another opens and all that…

I don’t know about hell.

Well, maybe sometimes.

I’m sort of picky when it comes to what I like hearing when I’m having a hard time. I like it when someone gets it. But I don’t like when someone says, Ooh, that looks pretty bad. Man, you’re really up against it. I like it when someone can relate to what I’m going through. But I don’t want anyone to minimize things. Or try to top me. Or argue with me out of what I’m feeling. Or get so scared they hightail it out of there.

It’s not always a hallway, though. Sometimes it’s a hole. It’s hell in the hole. Yes, I think that’s true. It’s dark and subterranean. But also warm. My Kim told me about an after-school special she remembers watching as a kid that taught what to do when someone you love falls down a hole: You go to the edge, reach your hand down there and keep it there until your friend takes hold.

Sometimes you have to go down there. I love what Brené Brown says about it, about empathy versus sympathy–did you see ever see this?: