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Empathy by Numbers

Well that's the first week of walking completed. Over 70km covered already. It is a constant action that I am aware of as soon as I wake, which is probably why I complete the walks so early in the day. They haven't been too much of a chore as yet, but it hasn't been too wet or rainy either.

Most of the walks have been with friends and family, although a couple have just been me and Luna. These walks give me time to contemplate, my Lauren Time.

On a recent walk I started thinking about how I am drawn to sad stories in the press, especially relating to children's deaths, and even more so if the death was sudden and unexpected. I seemed quite macabre and I worried what it may say about me and my state of mind.

I concerned myself with this for a while, but came to the conclusion that what I am seeking out is actually empathy. I want to read these stories and hear about the families and the loved ones because I need to know that someone feels the same as we do. I need to empathise with these strangers. It gives me a feeling of kinship. I guess it's the reason people used to meet in village halls to discuss their problems with others who have experienced the same.

I also think that the search for empathy may be behind my need to write. Empathy is such a stronger emotion than sympathy, but it can only be found through true understanding. The more I talk about my thoughts and feelings, the more people I tell my story to, the more that sympathy turns into empathy. This empathy makes my sense of ease and kinship increase.

So by reading this you are all members of my support group, thankyou.

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