More and more, these days, I find that the subject of gratitude comes up. With some people, it is a constant part of their lives and, no matter what happens, they will always find something to feel grateful for. I see myself in this group, by choice and by practice.
There are others who just expect, and no matter how much they’re given and how often people include them, share with them and are kind to them, they find reason to complain, demand, expect and even be downright rude when they don’t receive exactly what they believe they deserve.
In debating how to handle a situation with someone of the second category, I am reminded of a story I heard recently. A mother and her young child were in a store. The child was willfully and belligerently misbehaving, including pulling greeting cards out of their slots and throwing them on the floor. The mother told the child that if she didn’t stop, she wouldn’t buy her the book she wanted. The child looked the mother in the eye, picked up another card and dropped it on the floor. Now, at this point, you’d expect the mother to pick the child up, take her out of the store and warm her behind, right? In this case, much to the amazement of her fellow customers, she picked the child up, took the book to the register, paid for it and left with the child, leaving behind a number of people wearing expressions of stunned disbelief.
Now, I doubt that any parent is 100% consistent when teaching their children to be good people, but I wonder how many obnoxious adults were raised in this “path of least resistance” manner? Although I did not raise my children that way and, for the most part, they learned to behave themselves in public, I find myself holding back from voicing my expectations now. Part of it lies in the fact that I choose to live my life more peacefully now, and wherever possible, avoid unnecessary confrontations, but part of it lies in my perceived expectations of how the whole thing will play out, and possible undesirable results affecting other people which could come out of this issue. I do know that, whatever happens, should I choose to raise the issue, I need to keep my cool despite the reactions of the other party. I will also have to choose the time and place carefully to minimize said undesirable results.
Does this quandary make me seem like something I have always fought against? A wishy washy, namby pamby doormat? I don’t believe so. In the past, I would have, and would have hit the confrontation with both feet, fists flying and mouth engaged before brain, but one of the things I’ve learned is that we don’t need to be the bad guy to resolve a situation where we are being treated disrespectfully any more than we should allow it to continue. The best solution to any problem is to find a way to resolve it so everyone wins, and I choose to hold off on addressing this one until I can find at least a starting point to do just that. I’ve also found that when I have something like this on my mind, it will find its way into my meditations and possible solutions will start to form. I’m very pleased that I gave up my old “baby with the bathwater” ways and actually am learning to engage the brain, quiet the emotions and act instead of react. And in so doing, I hope I’m filling up my patience vault because, as the house progresses, I know I’m going to need to dig deep into that vault to keep from making myself and everyone around me crazy!
Speaking of which, I need to call the contractor tomorrow to find out whether the plans have been submitted to the city yet. The pod is in my front yard and I’m hoping the kids will get back to work on the brick wall soon, so the only thing left is to get the plans approved, start the demo and get this puppy rolling! I plan on cooking Thanksgiving dinner in my new kitchen and serving it in my new, larger living room, so it’s time to stop burning daylight, hitch the buggy up and roll on out! 🙂
Love and light.