I honestly don’t remember the last time I went through a whole entire box of tissue in one day, ever? I don’t think I ever have, but I did today. And tonight, I’m blessed with a sore throat to prove it.
My nose is running and my feet smell – is what my dad would say – and it’s probably true.
I feel like a whole bundle of yuk all rolled up into one round, puffy ball of UGH. And there you have it, the whole reason for using up an entire box in one day. I’m a mess.
But that isn’t what I’m writing about today.
While I’ve been a mess, and I haven’t left the house – for fear of infecting the entire country with this yuk – I’ve met with three clients over the phone, fixed another website problem, and still managed somehow to get past the client that called me a “B” in our last conversation when he wasn’t getting what he wanted from me… And now, we’ve arrived at my reason for writing this message.
I’m pretty easy to get along with, most days. And even on my ‘sterner’ days, I sound more more like a mom getting kids out the door to do what they must, than a drill sergeant (I live with one of those, I know what they sound like). I’m well aware that it’s currently – in relevant ways – okay with the populace to refer to women as the “B” word. But it is not okay with me. It is never okay for someone to call me that word, and if it’s done over the phone, I will disconnect without warning. If it’s in person, I will leave. If it’s in writing, I can assure you, it will be a cold day in hell before I respond to you. It is NOT okay to call me a “B”.
Learning to Disagree
Over the past several months, there appears to be one line of thought that I must on some level overcome and that is the ability to disagree and remain at least plausible friends. I’ve really never had a problem before, because in most cases I can accept that not everyone agrees with me, or is going to on any level accept that we don’t always agree, so I just let them think whatever they want. But recently, it appears that if I disagree with others for some reason they feel the need to have total explanation as to why.
I don’t owe them an explanation. It’s enough that I disagree with them.
I don’t ask for their reason for disagreeing with me. I just accept that they don’t agree with me and we move on. Life goes on. No big deal. I don’t scratch their car, burn down their house, or throw a temper tantrum… The worst thing that might happen is they end up in a blog post! I probably won’t mention their name if they do.
My point is, I’m not a cat fight, scratch your eyes out if you don’t agree with me kind of girl. And I don’t want those people for friends. So, I don’t keep them if they are that kind of person. I walk away. I find the exit. I use it.
Again, I’m learning how to disagree with others…
Full on Learning Process
Here’s where I’m at, and how it’s working so far. My 10 Step Plan to Maintain Friendships:
- Stay ahead of the game. There are just some subjects, some friends, should not discuss. I usually have a good grip on what those are and can avoid them, because we have other interests.
- Never attack a friend for their viewpoint. After all, everyone has their own perspective, and we should allow and acknowledge those differences.
- Know and understand that I’m not the ultimate ‘savior’, I’m only the messenger. The key is to simply plant the seed in fertile ground, and let the master add water and harvest.
- Develop the ability to recognize fertile ground. I don’t need to be the one who tills the soil… The Holy Spirit will do that for me, so I only have to offer up seed, and let it settle until the ground is prepared. I can then walk away and leave it for a more appropriate time – if ever – to discuss the seed.
- Trust dormant seed to grow. I remember a time when I simply prayed, “God my baby girl needs you.” And I left it there. I left that work to God, to know when and where, because she was out of my reach.
- Keep the door open. I remember when I was young, hearing that if God closes a door, he will open a window. But who wants to try to navigate through a window? I prefer to walk through a door, so I leave the door open. When a person who has found it impossible to agree with me is met with a closed door, they rarely make the effort to check the windows, but they’ll occasionally try the door knob. I leave the door open.
- Don’t be a door mat. I don’t want foot prints all over me, so I don’t lay on the porch. I stand up for myself. I know what I believe. I state it openly. I don’t hesitate to open that discussion if it’s in front of me. I also know when to walk away.
- I protect my heart. There are people who will hurt you, just because they’re hurting themselves. You don’t have to let them. You can protect your heart. In fact, you should protect your heart. You should hold onto your joy, protect it with all that you are, and devise ways to keep your joy in tact… Sometimes, that means constructing boundaries, building a fence, and limiting access to your heart. Protect your heart.
- Keep your faith. This isn’t an option, it’s a necessity, because without faith, nothing else matters. Keep your faith.
Don’t be afraid to call out to God to meet you where you are, and serve up whatever it is you need.
He tells you to call on him. Go to him. Lay down your burdens and trust in him. Do that. Reach out to him and invite him to fix the problem you’re facing, with a friend, with a family member, wherever that problem is – give it to him, and let HIM do whatever is necessary to solve it.
Fill up the Entire Box
Don’t be afraid to use up the entire box. There’s more where that comes from, whether it’s friends, or tissues, or soap, or whatever… Use it up and know that in His infinite wisdom, God will provide whatever it is that you need, however much that is. He will bring more friends, he will give you more tissues. HE will provide.
Trust in Him.
And about that guy who called me a “B”? Well, he hasn’t apologized, but he’s been calling and asking for services… He may eventually find the door again, but he’s going to have to figure out how to get back into my good graces, before I will let him set down again… That’s just how it is. This girl has a boundary.
Now… I’m going back to bed with a new entire box of tissues…