For the past few weeks, friends and family has had to listen to me ramble on about the pool I just added to my backyard. Hearing me one would think I had the most beautifully designed masterpiece installed. In reality, it’s an average oval-shaped, above ground pool. Nothing spectacular or particularly enchanting, and yet, the excitement is pouring out of every inch of me.
This morning, I received a phone call from a business colleague with whom I have forged a friendship. During the call, she informed me about her recent illness and shared the challenges that she endured. After hearing about her suffering and subsequent recovery, I said, “Oh honey, I’m so happy that you’re feeling better.”
After my statement, there was a moment of silence after which she replied, “Please don’t call me honey … it’s very condescending!” With those words there was a noticeable shift in her persona.
I must admit … her response took me by surprise, which was probably evident by my silence. The voice in my head screamed, “What the heck just happened? Why were my well-intended wishes met with scorn?” I had no idea what elicited her response.
Recently a friend who was contemplating separating from her husband gave me a call and asked my advice. A few years ago when my emotions were spinning out of control and I was in the throes of my marriage breakdown I would have shouted “Divorce the bastard!”
Now, a few years post-divorce, I have gotten off the emotional rollercoaster called relationship breakdown and a cooler head prevails. My advice to her: slow down you move too fast!
Last night my son’s fire pager went off and like hundreds of times before, the call for a response was made. And like hundreds of times before, knowing that he would be going into service, I listened to the call as I went about my business.
Last night’s call was different than any I had heard before, however, it required my full attention. The call was for a “suicidal woman threatening to harm herself.”
Fall down seven times, get up eight. – Japanese proverb
How many times have you had an idea or dream about doing something and before you can even process the thought, the laundry list of reasons why you can’t accomplish it pops into your head? If you’re like me, that list goes on and on and on.
When I was a young girl, I never would have imagined that so much of my adult existence would encompass working with survivors of divorce. Heck, I never would have imagined that I would be one. But as we age, the old saying, “it is what it is” becomes more and more relevant.
One of the aspects of divorce that I cannot comprehend is that for many men, it is an invitation to relinquish their parenting responsibilities and put their needs and desires ahead of those of their children.
More and more I see women being left to assume the primary care giving responsibilities of their children while the fathers go on to lead their own lives and in many cases, start a new family, leaving behind the old.
A few nights ago I was having dinner with a group of women when one of the ladies remarked, “My ex-husband’s new girlfriend is a demanding bitch and he’s jumping through hoops for her.”
I joined in with the group’s resounding “halleluja … amen sister!,” but when the evening ended and after I returned home, I began to ruminate about what my friend said and what her words actually meant.
I dissected the language.