I once read that we see in others what we need to see in ourselves. Or, those around us mirror back to us what we can't recognize in ourselves. We get what we give? I'm willing to contemplate all of the above as long as I discover and learn the lesson, eventually.
So often, we act with pure intentions that are perceived in ways that we never considered. Feelings are hurt and relationships altered and we are left reeling under the weight of it all.
It is in our nature as human beings to see the world through our individual and unique filters. Remember that child's game gossip?
I whisper "The blue cat was wearing yellow socks." But by the time the "gossip" is whispered into six different ears, the last person hears, "The bucket swearing mellow box." In the game, it's hilarious, not so much in our day to day interactions with people important to us.
If I run out one afternoon to pick up groceries, mail some letters and put gas in the car and the lady at Giant bags my groceries even though I'm in the 'Self Check' lane, everyone in line at the post office is patient and cordial and gas is under three dollars at WaWa, I'm feeling that 'all is right with the world' feeling. Then, singing along with The Four Tenors at the stoplight, waiting for my turn to go, the gentleman behind me starts blowing his horn... and all of my easy goodwill flys out the window on a winter breeze. I want to get out of the car and ask him what his problem is but think better of it. My mellow is gone, my song is gone and by the time I get home all Jules has to do is ask where the mail is and he is wishing I'd be gone !
Why is that? Why does it seem that the one challenging moment can completely invalidate all of the pleasant ones? I hate that about myself and consistently try to do better but some days it's almost impossible to find my rose colored glasses.
Yesterday I had a misunderstanding with my sister. I love her. I hate it when we both look at green and see pink and yellow. And because I see pink so clearly, I can't understand why she keeps talking about yellow. I realize all too often, that our world is sort of like the photo at the top of the page. I know exactly what it is. I put it there. I see it clearly. I understand it. I appreciate its beauty. But what do you see?
Sometimes we are too close. We have to take a deep breath and step back until the 'big picture' comes into focus. We have to trust the people we love and find a way to appreciate how inconceivable it would be if ice cream only came in chocolate, everyone listened to Rock, we all lived in green ramblers and drove tan mini vans. Our differences make us interesting and opinionated, volatile and receptive. Our differences allow for the new box of Crayolas to hold 120 crayons including, 'Atomic Tangerine', Electric Lime, Laser Lemon and Robin's Egg Blue.
What would Picasso or Van Gogh have done if the world could only embrace Rembrandt and Michaelangelo?
Sensitivity is a two edged sword. One side allows us to feel empathy and compassion while the other keeps us wounded and weary.
I'm sorry for the times that I've wallowed in the misery of unintended wounds. But more than that, I'm sorry for the times I wounded unintentionally.
Never burn bridges. Don't let the really important things wait til tomorrow. Don't be so certain that you are right that you forget to be happy, or kind, or generous.
Take a step back from the tedious details that are making you a little crazy and simply accept the gift of the moment.
They are precious and far too few, and when they are gone, oh how you miss them.