Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Darkest Hour is just before the Dawn

plat2
Ode to a Platitude
Karen growled and muttered an assortment of foul words in her car, driving over speed limit.  Her visit to Mom and Grandma had not provided the affirmation and comfort she had hoped it would.

Bill had packed up his stuff in the night and was gone before she woke up.  Note:  I’m outta here, bitch…and the last word was written in bold letters. Now, Karen needed to share her pain.

She had been in Mom’s kitchen, sipping on peach herbal tea.  Mom was kneading bread, taking loaf after loaf from the oven.  These would go to the homeless shelter.  Grandma was sitting quietly while knitting baby blankets for preemies at the local hospital.

Karen had been trying tell of her woes and ask for advice when the litany began.

“You know, honey, the darkest hour is just before the dawn. You’ll do fine.” This one came from Mom.

Such is life,” Grandma added. “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger!” She dropped a stitch, but caught it time.

Mouth open, Karen had looked from one face to the other, listening with disbelief.

“Yes, sweetie. God has a plan for you…you just don’t know it yet!...and then…It is what it isTime heals all wounds…Life doesn’t give you things you can’t handle…It could be worse…It wasn’t meant to be…There are plenty more fish in the sea…Everything happens for a reason..

When Karen’s grandma said “If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen”…

Karen had leaped to her feet and raced to her car.  She skidded out the driveway, narrowly missed the mailbox.  This found her flying along the freeway with profanity tailing after her.  Her thoughts were not kind.  If she ever heard one more mindless platitude, she would vomit.


'I eliminated all the platitudes and cliche statements, from your mission statement, and I'm left with this blank sheet of paper.'
Source

The italicized and underlined phrase is from Wednesday Words, where bloggers can play and experiment with the words or prompt.

These words or prompts are provided each week by Elephant's Child and fellow blogger River
Many thanks to Delores, who created this idea.  This is a re-post from 2014. I hear and read those cursed gems all the time.

36 comments:

  1. I feel for Karen. Why can't people use their own words to express what they wish to say?

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    1. Those were absolutely mindless phrases that the ladies used, because they weren't really listening.

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  2. We're all guilty of relying on platitudes. I know I am. Now put on your Big Girl Panties and deal with it!

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    1. I threw out my big girl panties because they wore out.

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  3. We've all heard them and yes, they can make us fightin' mad. Excellent use of Wednesday words!

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    1. Sometimes there are W.Words craziness, sometimes a photo prompt, sometimes a phrase. That is what keeps it fresh.

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  4. The breakups are always bad and lets face it cos like, at least it was a note, lol okay I shouldn't laugh cos thats salt in the wounds but the truth is your funny Susan, so what went wrong?

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  5. Writing stuff like this is fun.

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  6. good job, and I get what you are saying, sadly I think most of us are guilty of talking like this and not listening, not really listening. and i know i have been guilty of putting words on pretty pictures and feeling good because i did something deep. ha ha on me... there there now, Susan, it will all come out in the wash!

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    1. It is so much easier to toss out someone else's inane words than to use your own sincere words.

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  7. Oh yes.
    On a good day those platitudes make me grit my teeth - and sometimes good days are far apart.

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    1. Same here. The temperature does stuff to my head. 90+ deg.F/ 34 deg.C send migraines spiraling.

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  8. After the cartoon, I was expecting to hear, "And when the policeman that pulled her over said, 'Do you know how fast you were going?', She knew that twenty years in prison would be a long long time..."

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  9. I love how you write. Sometimes it's so hard for me to write to a prompt. Well done!

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    1. Just let your mind go. I go with the images that the words or prompts dredge from my mind. Platitudes always irritated me.

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  10. What happens next? I didn't want Karen's story to end! (*smile*) Thanks for this impactful reminder to think before I speak.

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    1. I thought about what would happen next with Karen. Should I send her back to Mom's house? Should she hug and cry? It is not known.

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  11. While a pretty picture doesn't make the words more meaningful, seeing the beauty makes me smile as i read.

    Platitudes do not help. "Oh, sweetheart, I am so sorry," and lots of the same is called for, as we really do want to be heard.

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    1. Just saying kind and truthful words like that is what Karen needed to hear.

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  12. Karen will be okay, you will see in the next chapter, she will find your worn-out Big Girls panties and say to herself, "Suck it up Buttercup!"
    LOL
    Seriously we all know platitudes are great for the other guy, But ain't worth a crap at the wrong time. I always enjoy your short stories....
    Sherry & jack

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    1. Suck it up Buttercup? Oh that is good.
      Every time I see a restored car (none as amazingly old) I think of your incredible cars at top.

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  13. Platitudes may work for some, but certainly not for a grieving daughter. There was no empathy in those statements.

    That was a well written post, Susan. I enjoyed it.

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    1. I am so glad! Getting a lot of positive info!

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  14. By now, Karen has probably considered the source, and realized that this, too, has passed.

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    1. Good thought. Knowing that your matriarchs are like that might help after a week or two.

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  15. Platitudes? No thanks. I'll take a good book and a block of chocolate any day.

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    1. I have a bowl of dark chocolate even as I read this.

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  16. Hello Susan! It is my first time here on your beautiful blog and I really enjoyed that read. Aside from the story, I also learned about the word platitude, and realize that I heard a lot of those in my life as well :) Thank you so much and love this story. We are all Karen's at some point in time having going through a lot and having endless questions about life but I firmly believe in Grandma's "everything happens for a reason" :)

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    1. It is great to see your name. I enjoyed you site and your photos! Grandma is correct on that one.

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  17. Your pic looks like a demotivator. Those are pretty funny. The cliches are true, but I don't think Karen was in the right frame of mind for them.

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    1. Karen needed to have some time to reflect, but she probably would still get upset.

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  18. We've all heard those platitudes before and maybe even used some of them. Once I saw the cartoon, I cracked up. Great little story!

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    1. The cartoon was a serendipitous find! Said everything that could add to the story.

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  19. Well done, Susan. I always enjoy this weekly challenge. I start out having no idea what I am going to write about, but it all come together.

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Go ahead...it won' t hurt...I'd love to hear what you think!