2020's Word of the Year

2020 word of the year- Release
Release control of what I can't control. Release worry. Release fear. Release...

Monday, April 11

Expectation revisited

I never really realized how much I let expectations drive my life.

First, there were the expectations of how one should behave. Not that this is a bad thing, but if you're not careful you can be overwhelmed with trying to please others and stressing out if you think you don't meet other people's expectations. I spent a large portion of my life doing just this and never quite came up to the mark and was always sick due to stress.

Second, there are the expectations we set our hopes on and if it doesn't happen just like we think it should we are severely disappointed. I have a good example for this. In 2002 we were going to Chicago to our daughter's boot camp graduation. I was excited to go see her after 8 weeks of training and I was excited to go to Chicago because I had never been there and my mom always talked about her trips there as a child. So I had this big list of things I wanted to do, places to go, sites to see. In my mind this was going to be so fun. But it didn't work out that way. I won't give you all the gory details but I felt like crying all the way home because nothing had lived up to my expectations. And this was mostly my fault. I should have expected less and then the disappointment would have been easier to deal with.

I have always been a pretty optimistic person but sometimes that can really affect the way that I see life. It affects what I expect to get out of life, and it affects what I expect from my life. And the last few years have been incredibly disappointing. My expectations have controlled my emotions and how I see my life. I am 52 years old and haven't done hardly any of the things I wanted to do with my life. I haven't traveled. I haven't accomplished things I would like to. But the worst thing is that I let my disappointment about this get in the way of the life that I do have. It's so very easy to wallow in your grief over the life not lived and totally miss the life that is here, right now.

So that is why chose the word EXPECT as my word of the year.

Sunday, April 10

Gossip told to teach a lesson is still GOSSIP!

I am struggling today. I lost quite a bit of sleep last night worrying over something that I shouldn't even have to worry about. Sigh...let me start with an explanation. My youngest son is developmentally delayed. He is almost 11 years old but has the mental capacity of a 4-5 year old. He is amazingly honest, in fact telling the truth is something he excels at even if he is brutally blunt. It is not uncommon for him to walk into a home and say, "Pee-ewsky, it stinks in here!" He doesn't realize he is being rude. The subtleties of being polite are lost on him. He thinks it; so he says it. Last year our neighbors divorced and dear Alex still comments on it every time he sees them. He doesn't mean to be rude or hurtful, he just doesn't understand. Most of the time I am able to contain the situation or give people a heads up so they don't take offense.
But then last week happened. Last week a person told my boys something about someone else from our church. I am assuming they were told this trying to teach them a lesson.At least I hope they weren't just gossiping for no reason.  But Alex has talked about it nonstop ever since. Now I am worried that he may bring this up to the family involved and I don't want that. First I don't want to hurt them because they have had enough hurt and are moving on. Second, I don't want them to think that I told my boys about this because I know firsthand what it's like to have your child's mistakes thrown back at you. Trust me, if you are ever tempted to judge parents on the decisions their children make, know that they have already judged themselves more than you ever will. Instead you could show them some grace. They could probably use it.
So now, I have to do three things.

  •  I am left with having to talk to the family in question and let them know what happened so that if Alex mentions it to them they will be prepared.
  • I have to explain to Alex that we don't talk about this because it is gossip and will hurt their feelings and then pray he forgets about it all together.
  • And I have to talk to the person who started this entire situation in the first place. And I really don't do confrontations very well. 
These kinds of things really frustrate me. All of this could have been prevented if someone would have just stopped to think before they spoke. If nothing else it's a reminder to me to use my speech wisely and think about what I say.

A Wise Woman Builds Her Home