There are moments in life none of us are proud of. Those times when our weaknesses define us until our strengths kick in. I unfortunately have many such experiences. The older I’ve gotten, the fewer things will get to me. I had a situation this week where I was upset and reacted through emotion before taking time to think.
I seem to either not think at all or think the hell out of a situation there is no in between. It makes it very difficult to interact with other people. I venture out or initiate contact just long enough to completely humiliate myself then realize I am better giving myself a buffer zone…like when Saturday Night Live has a guest they think will swear or do something they aren’t allowed to on t.v. They put a delay on the show for a few seconds. That is what I usually love about the internet. It allows me to have contact with others, stay connected and not be isolated but lets me stay in my save haven and have a delay option on my thoughts. Sometimes though I hit send before I should. I write the email that should go to a therapist to a customer service agent just trying to do her job. My bad day becomes her bad day. I hate it when my weaknesses define me.
I try not to let it happen but sometimes…. it’s a bad day.
I have learned as years have gone by, and as I have reflected on my life that it is not those weaknesses that define a life. It is what you do with that. Yes, I will have to eat some humble pie and apologize for taking my incredibly monsterously bad day out on an unsuspecting undeserving email customer service agent, but I will have grown. I don’t get mad very often but God has a way of using each time as a learning experience in my life. From this experience I learned to forgive myself. I use to think because every few years I would have a stressed out day and I would say or do something regrettable that made me a bad person….I would dwell on it for years as an example of why I sucked as a human being. Now I see it as an opportunity to be a better person. I get a chance to use and build some strengths…I have no problem admitting I am wrong. That is easy for me. Believing I could do something right is more my issue.
I used to hate the thought of growing older. I don’t anymore. I find it peaceful and filled with joy. The older I get the less things get to me. Yes, I still have my moments of stupidity but they are fewer and farther between. I don’t stress about then nearly as much and I think they help me feel empathy for others when I don’t always understand their actions or choices. It isn’t for me to understand. I do know the compassion I hope for as I swallow any small smidgeon of pride I had and apologize for telling the company their bills were proof they were evil incarnate (I did not swear or become completely disrespectful as I might have in my teens or 20s. I just told them how hard it was to make ends meet with the world constantly bleeding you dry….and lets face it…I cannot be the only person who has ever felt frustrated and needed to vent when life is throwing one expense after another at you. As I’ve gotten older I find it only takes me a short time to realize I am stupid or my weaknesses are outshining my strengths.
I am able to see the blessings around the trials. What used to seem like the end of the world in your 20s is just a new learning experience and bump in the road 20 years later. So I don’t look at it as a failure at life when I am not at my best. It was just a moment that sucked….so I better make the next one twice as awesome. I did extra good deeds, will sincerely apologize to who I offend and to myself for not being my best. Yes. life gets better with age…and hopefully (though a little slower than I would like) I do too.