Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Sorting my thoughts

I was going to call this post scattered thoughts, but I think I'm really sorting through my thoughts and attempting to find some kind of order.

I realize my train of thought has been all over the place this month.  First I blog about confrontation and my inability to people please.  Then I blog about Groundhog Day and the transformation from self-absorption to generosity of spirit.  Then I swing over to prayer and wonder if saying "I'll pray for you" has any meaning behind it or not.  Finally, I find myself back to admitting I am opinionated and have a tendency to "call people on their sh*t." 

I'm evidently doing a bit of soul searching.  This is something I love about blogging.  It allows me to see exactly what is going through in my head, typed on the computer screen.  It's the age-old push and pull between being assertive and being a doormat.  Between being liked and asserting my will.  Between being who I am and being who I should be.  Between being a strong woman or being a good girl.  Between acting like a Christian or not.

I feel like I've been sorting through a lot of stuff in my head.  I think most of what I'm thinking about stems from my recent visit with my parents.  I struggle with how much of my father I see in myself.  I struggle with the fear of my needing to be RIGHT to go so far as to disregard actual facts.  I sometimes have thoughts go through my head that make me think to myself, "dang, that's just what my father would think or say."  Since I think my dad is acting more curmudgeonly and more curmudgeonly, this scares me, A LOT.

I had a chat with a co-worker the other day.  She was saying how she wished she could be more like me and tell people exactly what she thought of them.  This comment was in the vein of letting people know when they were acting stupid or being inconsistent in their thought processes.  I didn't take it as a compliment.  I worry about this personality trait.  Don't get me wrong, this co-worker wasn't incorrect in her assessment of the situations in which she wanted to respond and let people know what she was thinking.  She was spot-on.  She chose to say nothing.  Now, maybe this was better for the individuals with the inconsistent thought process and inconsistency in their actions, but she's building an unhealthy load of resentment.  It makes me wonder.  Is my dilemma regarding my ability to speak out as unhealthy for me as the resentment that would build in me if I refrained from speaking out?   I mean, I often make these comments with a touch of humor or sarcasm, and people laugh, but they know I mean it.  Anyway, the workplace is not the area of my life I worry about.  Seriously, these are just the people I work with.  When I leave this position my leaving will have the exact same impact as the one left from pulling your finger out of a bucket of water.  There will be no trace.

I am most concerned with my ability to make and keep friendships.  I see my father and his dearth of friendships.  Granted, my dad is old and a lot of his friends have died, but not everyone.  I watch him push people as far away as possible.  I see him isolate himself at home, with my mom and resenting my mom's desire to socialize.  I don't want this to be my future.  I see my father push family away, including my brother.  I already have difficulty engaging with my son.  I don't want this to be my future.  I want a good relationship with my son.

I think I need to reinforce some of the things I know I have difficulty doing and, as the Nike ad says, Just Do It.  I need to smile more.  I need to practice kindness.  I remember at Christmastime I was really enjoying the things I was doing for the shoebox project and the families our small group supported with gifts and food.  Doing things like this really brought out my soft side.

I certainly hope I'm not fighting my DNA.  I certainly hope I can scrape away enough the curmudgeon growing inside of me to allow the gifts of the Holy Spirit shine through.  I know they are in there.

I will leave you with a link to my favorite crabby old man blog, The Problem With Young People Today.  If I knew I would age to be a curmudgeon with a wit like his, I'd be glad for it to happen.  Don is hilarious. 

Don Mills


  1. I envy people who can confront others directly and honestly, but with a touch of sarcasm that leaves one thinking. It seems like you have a healthy approach, better than keeping it all in and causing inner anxiety that comes out in other ways. 

  2.  Thank you.  As I mentioned in another post, I don't seek out confrontation, but I don't back down from it either.  :)

  3. you know, honestly i wish more people were honest more often....i think a good dose of that...with a bit of humility (respect) is a good thing...knowing where each other stand and not letting crap build up....

  4. I assume you're a Type A.  I am.  People always tell me they wish they could be more like me.  Decisive, sure, self confident, etc.  I always tell them I wish I was more compassionate, and easygoing.  We all want what we don't have.  :)


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