Life is full of beauty-
Harvesting gorgeous vegetables from my garden
Spending time with my amazing grandkids.
Girls night at the movies with my family tribe of women
Curling up with blankets on the couch to watch a weekend mystery with my teen daughter, while sipping our bottled rootbeers.
Delicious morning hugs from my still-sleepy husband
Peaceful, contemplative Sundays
Meaningful time with great friends
Farm animals happy to see me every morning
Gentle, quiet companionship from a sweet dog
I love peace. I love kindness and generosity and wholesomeness.
I do not like turmoil.
Recently, I got verbally spanked by someone over an accidental misunderstanding.
It was harsh and not expected. I cried later.
I love this person.
I've always respected her boundaries.
I've done my best to show kindness and be if not a great, then certainly a decent friend.
I'm very much an introvert, so I never feel that I'm a great friend or neighbor. (I require too much alone time.) However, I try to practice what I preach to my kids- to be smiling and cheerful in the company of others, to be sincerely gracious and say 'thank you' as often as I can, and to apologize immediately if I'm ever aware that I hurt someone- even unintentionally.
I'm also definitely a little too huggy, at times. Working on that.
I was really concerned that this person was so upset and tried my best to smooth things over, to make ammends and help her realize it was a misunderstanding.
My sincerest apologies seemed to only fall on deaf ears.
What do you do when you feel completely rebuked?
When your attempts at kindness go unappreciated and it seems no amount of authenticity or friendliness is enough?
It's often difficult for me to navigate this world in which we live.
I believe in being courteous, giving people the benefit of the doubt and treating others the way I'd want to be treated. (Which is, kindly.) I love people, am fascinated by their stories and wish everyone the best.
It is a rare thing for me to not like someone and if that happens, I try really hard to find something to like about them.
I believe there is enough for everyone in this world to find their level of contentment. (And that perhaps contentment, often, comes from unexpected sources or requires less than we think.)
I know that every single person is dealing with some degree of pain or doubt, sorrow or suffering. Fighting their own battles.
I truly wish them only health, happiness and peace.
I never wish to add more weight upon their shoulders. (Although, I'm sure I've been guilty of this.)
However, this misunderstanding I experienced later caused me to feel anger.
Anger over being treated so severely and having my friendliness swept aside as if it has meant nothing.
The fact is, the older I get, the more I want to call people out on their rudeness!
Their unfairness and crankiness.
Their forgetfulness of the generosity others have shown them,Their pickiness or disregard for the work other's have put into something.
Their gossiping and trying to tear people down,
Always trying to 'one-up' others.
Weighing others down with their complaints.
Not allowing others to happily live their own lives.
Plain ol' drama. Because apparently, life is boring unless they're scrutinizing everyone else, sensationalizing relationships or magnifying someone's faults.
I begin to think that at my age, having experienced and observed much, I have the right to call it like it is- to put them in their place if needed.
To be rude right back; which goes against every courteous skill I've honed in my lifetime.
And BOY, do I want to at times. I really, really do.
But here's the thing: I'm sure at some point in my life, someone- somewhere, has probably thought they could accuse me of things on that same list. Either because of some action or omission...or simply because they assumed something about me that wasn't true.
Pointing fingers and calling people out is a slippery slope.
After contemplating my experience and feeling reasonable once more,
I began to think on my course of action.
Here is what I know to be true.
More LOVE never hurts.
More LOVE can heal.
More LOVE, when given freely, forgives.
Family, friends, neighbors, strangers....I am free when I show forth an increase in love to my fellow human beings.
Because being a human is hard for us all sometimes.
So I will continue to love her and treat her the way I'd want to be treated... and do so free of any expectations.
And there it is- my peace is back.