There were two events this week that really served to me as a reminder of how hard it is to do something in a classy manner. Sometimes class doesn’t always apply in the attempt to seek closure. I’m starting to be of the opinion that the art of closure in a positive light is about as lost a concept in our contemporary culture as it is to provide constructive criticism.
The first was a friend sharing an experience she had with her babysitter drama. Basically, her sitter up and quit due to a pay dispute. So the sitter, an older woman who my friend did have much respect for initially, felt like she was entitled to a week’s vacation pay. Instead of trying to talk to my friend about the situation, she chose to up and quit with minimal notice. What bothered my friend the most about it all was watching her 4-year-old have a rough week at school because she is upset that her sitter is no longer around. This was a woman my “niece” has known from birth, someone who she grew to love to the point where she saw her as a second mom. Now, my friend tried to call her and be civil about things – she actually intended to have paid her for her vacation time all long – and all she got was a gruff cold shoulder. The ex-sitter really left the impression that it was always about the cash – even though my friend had often bent over backwards to make sure the sitter that she was always properly compensated.
It was difficult to watch my friend cry over the situation, especially because she was crying over how her daughter felt and the sacrifices she made to keep the sitter around even when it got to a point where it was such a financial stress on her because she valued the peace of mind knowing her kids were taken care of.
The second situation was a simple conversation I had with an ex. We had some issues that caused our relationship to end – she was an older woman seeking children immediately and I wasn’t in a position to do that. A break up is a break up, but I left our separation thinking that we had parted ways as well as possible – we even had talked about remaining friends at the time. So it was very interesting to check in with her this week just to see how she was doing and to hear her mention she was going through some stuff. I offered assistance to which she declined. No problem there, but what struck me was this comment:
“I don’t feel we have that kind of connection that I can talk to your about what’s going on in my life.”
I guess it goes to show you that sometimes even in the best of break ups, you may really only know what you were dealing with once you get out of the situation. I won’t speak ill of her or air close door situations; while I not surprised by a comment like this, it still didn’t sit well with me.
Those who know me very well understand that I have always believed that “adversity always reveals the strength of the character in us.” While we are often able to make things slide when in an intimate relationship, it never ceases to amaze me how we those ties are ended all “the shit you let slide comes out” – often in a negative way.
So were we putting up with the things we didn’t like? Or were we just waiting for a moment to vent about it without any repercussions?
Perhaps I am in a minority, but I have always thought that the best time to work through adversity in a relationship is while there was people were still connected and vested. I never liked working on stuff through “breaks” because most times it was about leveraging hearts and people had their foot all but on the door.
I guess we still have a lot to learn how handle these situations, for those who are interested in staying on the straight and narrow anyways. Perhaps we have gotten o a point where things are so disposable these days – income, possessions, and even people’s affections. There is still some class in how to part ways with folks and still leave them in without unnecessary additional baggage.
Guess it really hard to traverse the straight and narrow…many folks want the broad yet winding roads thinking that it is easier to see what’s around the corner. Yet we often find ourselves blindsided some of the most avoidable pitfalls around the next bend due to being solely focused on getting what we want. Perhaps a wise man once said it best (paraphrased):
“Do what you can in the best way you can, and what you cannot do then let it be as best you can.”