Being whole, is entirely internal. There is no physical way to be considered whole or not. I believe that a person can be considered whole, whether they’re an able bodied person, they’re missing their legs, or they have learning or physical disadvantages. Being whole is based on the mindset and ideas of an individual. I do not believe that it is entirely controllable by that person, but it’s not a physical trait.
There are lots of things in a lifetime that can affect one’s ability to be whole. How they were born, how they were raised, different experiences, and big life changes and events. I think it is possible to be considered whole at one point in life, and not in another depending on different events in a lifespan. For example, war and post traumatic stress disorders. Soldiers very commonly will be changed in their personalities and traits. They may leave a “whole” person, but come back missing a part of them. There is always the obvious physical whole and not whole, but it’s the mental composition that is less known, and less talked about.
Confinement is extremely degrading and hard on the psyche. In A Place to Stand, it seems as though you can go into a maximum security prison considered whole, and leave missing a part of yourself. I’ve noticed Jimmy changing more and more through his time in prison, especially the isolation. It must be impossible to for him to leave his sentence still with the same mental configuration as he went in. I see this very similar to the cases of military members coming home from war, and no longer being considered “whole” by those closest to them, and themselves.
The events in which a person is raised, have a dramatic affect on that person’s likelihood and ability to be emotionally and mentally whole. As for Baca, he was raised in a difficult situation. It seems as though he could have been considered an accident. His father, was an abusive drunk, and his mother ran away from the situation, leaving Jimmy theoretically without a family. An upbringing as dysfunctional as this, clearly isn’t ideal for creating a balanced and otherwise, whole mental state.
I would be interested to run a poll asking many people of different backgrounds and ages, if the believed themselves as a “whole” person. It may show different things such as experiences growing up, or different things that different people have been through. Because being whole is entirely internal, different people with different ideas will consider the concept of being whole diversely.
In this piece, I’m trying to achieve a little bit of a deeper thought process. Ideally, I want the reader to think more deeply for themselves, without me influencing my own opinion too heavily. I’d say a few points and arguments are well done in this piece, such as the military topic. I think the ending isn’t very good, bringing up a new idea doesn’t flow very well.