March 28, 2020
The Pain of An Untold Story  Jonathan Jones Speaks TEDxTAMUSalon

The Pain of An Untold Story Jonathan Jones Speaks TEDxTAMUSalon


Myself in this situation I’m on the brink of failing out of high school The young lady that I’m dating at the time tells me that now she has a baby on the way And then to make a bad situation worse. I just got fired from my job Like there’s no way that this can be happening to me Like this has to be a dream. So I rolled back over and of course coming back to sleep Only just a few hours to awake later, and then I realized that that dream that Dream was my real-life nightmare Hold on. Wait a minute. Wait a minute. Let me slow it down. Let me rewind let me not get too worked up Sometimes I have that tendency. Let me take a deep breath Everybody do with me So much more refreshing So it was my senior year in high school, and I was the man on campus Well, okay Okay, a few people knew my name and then I was getting my college plans in place and I had to finish the year I was strong So then I would just head to the local grocery store This is where I worked at the time and this was my safe haven They loved me here and I was just on my register checking him out Hi, how are you? Oh, you smell terrific. I’ll see you next week. Okay. Oh Yes, ma’am, and then my manager approached me and she said Jonathan Do you mind if I have a quick just a quick word with you? Now after what what is this about? She said Jonathan just turned off your light they want to see you upstairs and something just told me deep in my spirit that This wasn’t going to go according to plan But I honored her request I made my way around my register and then I began to pass by my friends over at customer service And we were all like this one big family and we would laugh and we would joke but today Today nothing was funny And have ever been in a space in a situation to where it seems like everyone else around you Knows some deep dark secret and you’re odd man or odd woman out everybody say yes So then I just slid on by and I began to make my way up the stairs And before I could make it to the top I was met by a sharply just gentleman I’ve never seen before in my life He said Jonathan Please have a seat He was very sharply dressed blue suit white shirt blue tie presidential like Said Jonathan, my name is Bob I’m with loss prevention Do you know what we do? Said well Bob I mean, I’m not really the best at guessing games but if I had to assume I’m gonna say that you help prevent loss he said Very good Jonathan. Very good. No one really gets that on the first try I said well okay, so my next question for you is do you know why you’re here and It was almost as if in that moment in that instant That I had amnesia. I said Bob I have no clue. I don’t know why you brought me here I don’t know why he took me off my register. I don’t know what’s going on. I Said okay Jonathan That’s fine. Okay, I’ll give you that one. Except my last question for you Are you familiar with the term of sliding? groceries Said Bob. Oh For two because I definitely don’t know what this one meant He said Jonathan was sliding groceries as you passing groceries over your register without the intent to scan them And as I just sat there and stared at Bob with a dumbfounded look on my face And I began to see almost like a movie reel playing in my head in slow motion And I began to see the friends who would call me and text me of all hours of the night Just trying to coordinate a meeting point in a meeting time to where they can come in maybe get some chicken wings or another time where somebody says John you remember that one time where I helped you out and you didn’t have a Ride from school and I picked you up and I took you where you need to go So can you you know? make this thing happen for me to where I come in and I pick it up and I don’t really pay anything and Then there was a point where it got so bad to where friends would come to my house The night before I would go to work and they would slide money in my mailbox And then as I’m looking at Bob and he continues to ask Questions and interrogate me and the pick and the pry to the point where I’d say, Bob Great as The guilt rose up and have forced me to speak out. I Said I’m guilty. I Said I slid those groceries Said Jonathan, thank you for your honesty. You can go home. You’re no longer needed for the day. You’ve been relieved Now so I hung my head and I took that long lonely walk of shame Still seeing my friends like customer service, but I tried to rush out and hide my face because I was embarrassed Have you ever had an? Incident where you got into a little bit of trouble and you knew that your integrity was telling you to go the right way But still you for some reason Took a turn Then I was in the place where I hopped in my car and I said, okay, let me just go home Today’s gonna be over. This is all just a terrible dream It’ll end let me just make it home. Then. I will be fine. I’ll just be able to go to sleep And just before I arrived home the Calls in the text John. Where are you? Where have you been? What happened? everybody is so nosy all of a sudden because they want to be in my business And my girlfriend at the time she called me and I finally answer the phone I said hello, what is it She said John I need to see you. I said no not Not today Can we just talk about this tomorrow? Can this way just tomorrow? Just give me just give me a little bit of time. I just got fired from work I’m not trying to think about anything or anyone it’s nothing personal Just leave me alone She said John first I was asking you Now I’m telling you and ladies this is when she dropped this phrase on me And I wasn’t ready for it to say the least Those heavy four words, she said John We Need to Talk And five minutes flat I was in my car and I pulled up in the driveway Before I could even really Park she met me Face friend and I was like, what is it? and I can tell that she was exhausted because her eyes were bloodshot I could tell that she was crying and Seeing the bags under her eyes because it was almost as if she was carrying this weight of this secret And I was like, what is it, please just let me know. Just tell me She said John I don’t even know how to tell you this I said, please just tell me She said John I’m she began She said I’m pregnant I Just embraced her and we just sat there for a moment But during that time that was when I realized that my dreams were going off to school Leaving Georgia coming to Texas and going to get my college degree that crashed Me going to playing Division one basketball living out my hoop dream, finally That vanished Because now I’m having to position myself To not only provide for a family but taking on the responsibility of providing for a child This was all bad Have you ever been in a place to where you had one of those terrible horrible, no good, very Bad days everybody say yes So after we had this conversation I hopped in my car then I began to drive home and I’m like, okay this Is it I’m doing and now this is when one of those Individuals where we might call our friends because they just hang around but this is our friend named adversity And adversity began to bang on my door. Boom. Boom. Boom. Boom John. What are you gonna do now? How are you going to take care of this situation? How are you gonna provide? What’s next? Don’t worry, John. Nothing’s next because this is the part where you crumble This the part where the story is over No, happy ending say bye-bye And I said adversity. I don’t want to play today. I’d over my bed I pulled the cover over my head and I just put my face in the pillow And then as days days turned to weeks The week’s turned to months and now I’m just trying to figure out What do I do? Now I’m thinking Dropping out of high school this became a real reality for me Leaving just getting a job somewhere Because knowing that just lost my previous one. I’m gonna have to do something to generate some form of revenue Again early one morning I as I began to roll over Hello Hello, wait, what What happened? Hello? Hello? And in that instant she just let me know that She would no longer be having the child and she just suffered a miscarriage I Didn’t know what to say to consoled it. I Couldn’t even conjure up the words together to find a way to help remedy the situation because it was tragic the loss of a child And some of you might say Jonna what what’s the point of that story John why are you sharing that with us here Because I was carrying that shame and I was carrying that guilt and it was so heavy My mom and my dad never even heard this story Because I felt that there were people out there that would judge me I felt that I’d be ridiculed There was a point I even felt so unlovable Have you ever felt to where you hit rock bottom and then you couldn’t even see your ounce of daylight You’re almost to the point of where you were swimming in a sea of darkness and you couldn’t even see the Sun But according to cognitive psychologist Jerome boomer He says that were 22 times more likely to retain information. In fact when they’re shared within a story in The beautiful thing about stories is sometimes we laugh together with stories and other times we cry But stories are all around us Instagram Twitter snapchat NBC ABC CBS stories surround us on a daily basis if their political if they’re about religious beliefs or even Maybe Kanye West’s recording a crisp Christmas a Christian album. Oh my goodness But friends, I want you all to understand that Today, I don’t want anyone else to be in a position to where they’re a prisoner of their own story each and every one of you in here Your story has value Your successes your scars your failures. They all make up our stories Because there’s too many people who we see on a daily basis we say hi we say bye but we don’t take the time to really Connect with people with social media in our face and all this screen time here and there and we don’t Even get to see people and connect on a heart level any more But when we began to share our stories and then we began to put ourselves in circles with friends. Now, we’re able to take time and Get to know one another and help heal from the inside out Because I believe that each and every one of our stories are a prescription for someone else’s pain So today my friends I’m not here to dare you to stand behind a podium and Share your story I’m not even going to dare you to step in this extremely large red circle And proclaim your message, but the circle of friends that each of you all have They need to hear your story Because by you sharing your story now you allow them to be free from that bondage from that shame from that guilt because when you begin to share your struggles and your flaws and those things that might Have hindered you then somebody else is Me too. I was in that situation also and Now you’re able to put them in a place to where they can see that they can yield a certain level of success For their lives as well So friends today, I want you to understand that there’s no greater pain and There’s no greater agony Than bearing that of an untold story Dr. Maya Angelou once said So today I charge you all to share your story My name is Jonathan Jones. Thank you

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