Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Value Added Friendships

I feel like writing but my thoughts are random and disjointed right now so I'll just go for a stream of consciousness post today.

I've been pretty seriously ill lately and it's a great reminder of how wonderful my friends are. At the end of the day, I have a roof over my head, plenty to eat, an amazing family and great circle of friends. I am truly blessed despite my medical demons. I have known for a long time that life is neither fair nor equal and I am at peace with my situation. We all have crosses to bear and the best we can hope for is that we can learn from both our individual and common experiences.

That said, I am exceedingly sad for and disappointed in people who can't be bothered with extending even a single kind word to me, and therefore, I would assume, act the same way towards others with whom they come in contact. I've done nothing to anger these folks or warrant this behavior. I honestly believe people like this don't even realize how selfishly they are perceived by others who aren't like that. However, the tragedy of it is that they have no idea how much joy they are missing. The ability to bring sunshine to someone's life is a gift that ought to be experienced time and time again by each one of us.

It's probably silly and childish on my part but, frankly, it bugs the snot out of me. I'm not making much sense without being specific. One very minor example comes to mind. Let's just say that you have been feeling so sick that lifting your head off the pillow in the morning is a major accomplishment and that days on which you actually are up and about and trying to find a sense of normalcy for a few hours no matter how bad you feel seems like a major victory. Now let's say you knew many people who raced over the weekend. Despite feeling crappy, you made the effort to look at each one of their results and extend a congratulatory message. Now let's say that of that group only one seventh of them had the decency to respond with a "thanks". Do you know that it takes less than two seconds to write that word and less time to utter it?


Unfortunately, it's a pattern of behavior for many and I am a believer that, with few exceptions, people don't change. The problem here is, in fact, not with other people, but with me. I have accepted it. I've sometimes allowed myself to be treated in ways that I'm not really OK with. Obviously the example above in isolation is not a deal breaker, and you certainly can't mandate manners, but I find that frequently little things like this are very telling of the thoughtfulness and respect, or lack thereof, people have towards others. There is an air of self-absorbedness there that is completely foregin to me and the truth is that I don't ever want to be like that and I don't ever want to become so immune to it that I think it's just dandy to treat others as such.

Up until now I've just sort of shrugged off some things as "they are what they are" situations and, truth be told, the actions of people beyond my inner circle have little effect on my life; however, right now, in the midst of phsycially suffering through each day with not much to lift my spirits other than the kindness of others, I have realized that it's time to cut the dead weight. People who do not add value to my life are no longer welcome in it.


Leslie said...

Hey Princess. I'm sorry you've had a rough go with "the thing" lately. I know I have been MIA lately and I usually try my hardest to reach out and just let you know I'm thinking of you during these rough times. I'm sorry I haven't found the time recently and I just want you to know I often pray for a cure or at least hope your symptoms just up and disappear.

m said...

It's really too bad and totally their loss. You definitely deserve to be surrounded by good people.

Anonymous said...

Hey Princess! I hope to God that before you ever cutt me off as dead wood you would kick my ass for becoming dead wood. YOu have my permission to do so :)

Beleive me kid - a day doesn't go by where I don't think of you and hope and pray for some relief.

Keep that inspiring attitude going! YOu have no idea how much it has helped a guy like me press thorugh plenty of crap on my way to the dream:)

Anonymous said...

The downfall of civility will be the assumption of entitlement. For some this means the expectation that others will praise/pay attention/give good notice without any reciprocal obligation.

As I have opined before...it is like holding the door open for a stranger. Costs nothing, means everything, and is all but gone as a common practise.

But you know, most Cranky Princess, that there is a karmic grace to doing the right thing when the right thing is required.

Cut off the dead wood, yes before it becomes gangrenous...but never cease being the heuristic exemplar that you are...even when your strength and wellness flicker like a candle flame in a vacuous bell jar.

Just keep moving forward.
Your words pulled me through...and still do.