Saturday, I started writing about how I think that the reason I get so
neurotic, sad, weird, analytical, bitchy is that I am not living my personal truth. In spite of how I feel about a cliche. Some truth is objective and there is situational right and wrong. Which a lot of people mean to say, “You do what you feel like doing and if it hurts someone else that’s a shame.” No. Situationally, (bite me, Spellcheck) there is right and wrong, and sometimes it is clear that there will be a winner and a loser.
How many times have you had to speak to someone about a problem whether it is a business or personal, where the person vaguely admitted you might have a point. Then made excuses. Then subtly started to express with tone, expression and posture,
“This is over. Why are you still here? Are you a….bitch? I think you are…why yes…you are making a scene.”
The choice is yours. Get acknowledgement of their responsibility(and, God forbid, the situation corrected.) at the cost of your dignity. You’ve done nothing wrong, but have to choose whether to keep the smile on the face of the other person in order to manage their opinion of you or get what belongs to you at the risk of unfair damage to your name or reputation. When this happens among children, we call it bullying.
The post lay unfinished Saturday night, and I was starting to feel nervous about not posting.
Early in the day, someone, whose friendship means a great deal to me, made a comment that I needed to clarify. She lives within a couple of miles, so I went over and we chatted and cried and maybe prayed. I stayed too long (maybe an hour and a half or a little more).
When I got home, we were running out to a birthday party (way out…it always surprises me how far out. I always sort of wonder why they just couldn’t have made the road straight). Once we got in the car and headed out, Mickey started telling me what happened while I was gone.
The girls watched Next Door’s grandkids while she stepped over to the grocery store. When she was barely out of sight, another neighbor we barely see, much less have a relationship with, shows up on the porch, with a child none of us were aware existed, saying they had a play date and wanting to enter the home.
My daughter, not wanting to make a scene, or seem rude, opened the door to this person. He asks her name and she tells, he asks where she goes to school and she tells, He attempts to gain entry to the house by claiming they had a play date and claiming he had attempted to call the neighbor. He had not.
Her sister, apparently not wanting to make a scene or seem rude, didn’t step past her and slam the door in his face. Didn’t clap a hand over her mouth or shout her down when she began to reveal personal information to a
skeevy son of a bitch stranger. I know she was making nice, because she would not hesitate to do those things if she were at home and she disagreed with her sister’s course of action.
Somehow, he ends up talking to my husband and telling him the neighbor recommended the girls as sitters (SHE DID NOT) and he and his wife had homeschooled their children and “where do y’all go to co-op?” He found out the name of our church, and said,”Oh yeah, they used to be right here in the neighborhood. In fact, your pastor recommended a church for us when we moved out of state.”
We can feel it whipping by, popping our ears and warming our cheek, but we have no idea what bullet we dodged. I don’t care how “not strange” that guy thinks he is. He did everything just the way we tell our kids to beware of and didn’t stop pressing until the information stopped flowing. Folks kept giving more information. Because they didn’t want to seem rude.
How many families are bent, broken and destroyed because we are all making nice for the person who is behaving in a selfish, untrained, inappropriate, dishonest way. That is not grace or graciousness.
How many 11-14 year-old girl’s faces are on billboards because we didn’t teach them to know when to use their “infinite-capacity-to-piss-someone-off” for a purpose?
Less than 2 weeks ago, my
blog friend, Jennifer wrote on a similar topic. I had no idea at that time that we would be here now.
My initial thought. Before I even had all the details. “No. Things have been too hard. Why can’t we just live? I am so sad. We are moving so that I don’t have to be prepared to
beat the living shi t out of deal with this man.”
I have been making nice to protect myself from unfavorable public opinion. I am real, raw, and exhausted from hiding. I don’t want to be lonely anymore. I have gone through this year with only the blog for a safe place to be transparent(just you and me and the interweb.)
Some of the people I am worried about offending will be offended by my language, but they watch PG-13 movies. I guess because store bought is okay but home made isn’t. Like with clothes.
I have to go “get it started in here.” Before I stop using too many words, let me remind you, we have Christianity because the religious leaders of Jesus day were more worried about looking good to each other than faithfully teaching those they were meant to lead. It kept Jesus from being able to simply work within the framework already in place.