Thursday, December 04, 2008

Some random things mulling around in my head

1. A phrase I heard a couple of times last weekend: "If I don't take care of me, no one else will take care of me." Thinking. Thinking. Thinking. While in one perspective I understand this and I totally understand where it is coming from and why it is being said by this specific person, mostly I feel very sad about it. VERY sad about it for a multitude of reasons.

2. Another phrase I heard this weekend: "Expectations breed resentments." Holy cow - very insightful and true. For a long time I have been learning and talking about the fact that when expectations do not meet reality it equals disappointment. I try to keep this in the forefront of my mind every day as I navigate through a social world where one person's story affects my story and I may not know the other person's story (follow that?). I've tried to really think about my expectations of life and of people and figure out if what I'm expecting is realistic and change my expectations or have no expectations at all. This is difficult yet very rewarding and helps make the challenge of life a little happier.

3. Everyone has a story. This is something that I've realized in the last two or three years. Everyone has a story. Basically, everyone has a reason for acting the way he or she acts - and I may not know your story and pass judgement on you... but if I knew your story, I would instead have sympathy, empathy, compassion, understanding, etc.

For example (and this is a very simple example): A few years ago I was having major wisdom tooth pain and had to have it extracted. I went to the grocery store while in pain and I'm sure my already unapproachable face was even MORE unapproachable and perhaps even pretty bitchy looking. And the many people that I came into contact with that afternoon could (and perhaps did) judge me and decide that I was _________ - insert adjective (bitchy, stuck up, snobby, impatient, intolerant, etc. etc.) HOWEVER - the truth was, I was in pain and was miserable, but still had to run an errand. That was my story that afternoon - and if someone had known my story, their perception and opinion would have dramatically changed.

I was reminded over the weekend that everyone has a story. And when you get a chance to hear someone's story - or even a tiny piece of it - it is not only fascinating, but it also clues you in to why that person is the way he or she is. Keeping this in mind helps me be less judgemental of people - people I'm close to and random strangers on the street. I hope - HOPE - that people I'm close to do not feel judged by me. I have seen the misery that judging people causes to the person that is judging and I want no part of it. Lord, help me to love and to remember that everyone has a story.

4. Yesterday I read the story of Mary's cousin, Elizabeth. She was barren for many, many years and then conceived John the Baptist. When she found out she was pregnant she went off for 5 months and relished in her pregnancy. I also had a conversation with BFWW last week about how when our child's agenda does not match our agenda it equals frustration for everyone involved. So yesterday I decided to simply RELISH in my children and the little boy that I babysit and allow their agenda to lead the way (mostly). That isn't to say that they got away with whatever they wanted, but I took some time to simply enjoy them and to watch them be who they are, to cuddle, to kiss, to play, to slather on lotion after a bath, to read books, to allow them to play outside past the time I asked them to come in, to wear a pasta necklace that Ryann made me in school. What a happy day we had! My spirit feels lighter today because of it. My patience increased and my smiles multiplied.

5. The elderly deserve respect. Period. They are people, not objects. They have things to say - it may not be interesting to YOU, however, it is what is going on in their lives and it is their current story. And they have amazing past stories and wisdom to share if we take the time to talk to them and ask about life as a child or a newly married couple or a mother of little kids. All we need to do is ask and talk and prompt and wait for the stories to come. And then listen.


kkoois 12:07 PM  

please refer to our phone call in regards to my thoughts and comments on your post...:)

enjoyed our conversation today!!

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