Monday, October 4, 2010

Outside Looking In

I had a great day.  Every now and again, we are in a position to state this and really mean it. 

What is the opposite of great?  Not great.  As I type, my day has managed to flip from great to not great...just like that.  Actually, all it took was a little visit to my home computer to check my email.  In five short minutes, a little black cloud got itself parked over my head where the sun used to be and I felt the now familiar feeling of being on the 'outside looking in' on my own family - kids, step-kids, parent, siblings, husband.  There are plans being made and e-conversations bouncing that I feel I should be part of or be included in, as a mother, step-mother, sister, daughter.  Instead, I am feeling omitted, ignored, forgotten, and left outside of a few 'loops'. 

I am reminded again that there are those close to me who are happy to have the company of my children, the financial fruits of my labour, the services of my home-making, the company of my canines, and whatever my refigerator might offer up; however, they are not really interested in being with me.

If life offers up a steady stream of lessons, the lesson in this for me is to develop an awareness that I, too, am capable of actions that could have this same effect on people I am called to care about.  We all have people in our lives that actively enjoy our company.  It is important that we define ourselves by their acts of inclusion, rather than the passive acts of omission that occasionally sting us.

There is an oft-quoted line, "If you can't be with the ones you love, love the ones you're with".  I have given it my own little spin:  "If the ones you love can't be bothered being with you, love the ones who do".

Who have you inadvertantly skipped over?  Technology makes it easier than ever.  Let us all try to develop the mindfulness required in an age of face-to-face conversations, phone calls, email and text messages that it is now very easy to circumvent people - with or without intention.

We all need to take care - of ourselves, our communication practices and of others - always.

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