My best friend and I recently spent the weekend together. Bestie and I have been together for almost three decades. We pride ourselves on having some “us” time every year. Since this year has a crazy wonderful rollercoaster ride, we decided to meet in a halfway city and have an extended sleepover. We went to a movie (which we discovered we had never done), ate ourselves into a coma, and flexed our shopping muscles at the local malls. We really became tickled when we realized we were dating for the weekend.
As Bestie and I were talking and waiting for a particular parking space at an outdoor retail heaven, there was a car of young women waiting to park, as well. The young lady driver made a gesture that indicated to me that we could have the recently vacated parking space. We pulled in the space and the car of young passengers SPED off in a huff to locate another space. For a second, Bestie and I looked at each perplexed and then burst out laughing. OOPS!! I misread her gesture. After the laughter, I began to feel a bit guilty.
The younger me would have not given a second thought about taking that parking space; I would thought I had made a marvelous move. As I reflect, I would have made a fantastic addition to the Bad Girls Club. However, the more evolved me tries to live my life through kindness, humility and grace. The parking lot fiasco sparked a conversation between bestie and me. We discussed how we used to love to be confrontational, aggressive, and sometimes down right mean. Back then, I was willing and ready to snap my neck, roll my eyes , and spit out profanities in rapid succession. Oh boy! I prided myself on the compound curse words I would create. No one was off limits. Husband, neighbors, retailers, waitresses, dogs, cats, or goldfish…all of them were one second from experiencing my wrath. Ahhh…young foolish me (I am cringing right now)! And to apologize for my behavior…NEVER. As a matter of fact, I thought I was owed an apology because of the energy I had to exert. Youth and ignorance are bliss!
Now that I am a true adult, I realize to be gracious in all situations is an art and a sign of maturity. I once thought to be taken seriously, I had to be aggressive. I wanted people to think “Don’t mess with her because she means business.” The actual truth was that some chose not to interact with me because I was a nicely dressed cussing CRAZY mess.
Now, please do not assume that I am a rug waiting to treaded upon. I am an educator, so therefore; I am not weak (shot out to the teachers of the world). I now realize that I can clearly get my point across while leaving myself and the person I am speaking to with dignity…even through the most difficult conversations.
As I continue to mature, I desire to be known as a woman who is kind, sympathetic, elegant, trustworthy, and gracious who takes care of business. Lavish lovelies, we can strong without being mean and crass. Always, remember KINDNESS wins EVERYTIME.
And to the vehicle full of young shoppers (if you are reading this), my apologies for misreading your gesture. I didn’t have my “old lady” glasses on. I thought you were saying “Go Ahead” instead of “Go Away”. Maybe our paths will cross again and I will happily give up the parking space that we are both vying for because my more lavish behavior dictates that I do.