Tuesday, August 7, 2007

I really ought to get some house work done, but this is an urgent thought. Reality. What is reality? When someone makes a statement and says,"... in all reality"or,"... in all actuality"- what are they really saying? We each create and dwell in our very own reality and that could not have been more apparent in the three conversations that I had with three very close friends yesterday.
The biggest misconception I witnessed is that of principle. Acting on principle is not validation for being spiteful and manipulative. There are instances when acting on principle adversely affects those involved, but not in so far as to sabotage or otherwise inconvenience them greatly. because of my strong feelings about drugs I would not-on principle accept drug money or tolerate any use or sale of drugs in my home or in my presence. This is principle. Calling the police or slandering the neighbors for smoking marijuana in their home during their party because I wasn't invited is spite. I think it must be far easier to act in vengeance than to accept that perhaps it is merely your perception of the event or person that is really bringing you discomfort. Perhaps my neighbor meant to stop over and invite me personally, but it slipped her mind in all of the planning, perhaps she called and the kids did not pass on the message. There are often so many hidden truths to any given situation that acting in haste and malevolence is always wrong.
Another misconception is something I learned about a decade ago from someone who strangely enough thought quite highly of me with an odd way of expressing it. Sense of entitlement. Believing that upon any action your are somehow entitled to retribution or restitution. I have seen it over and over and it never amounts to anything good. Parents and children, "I work two jobs and he can't even clean his room." It is your responsibility to take care of your children and part of that is setting rules for communal living such as chores. Have you asked your children to clean the room? Twice? (I learned this in a marriage seminar, asking once is never enough) And, have they had consequences for not doing so? Perhaps your two jobs have interfered with your main job. Revisit. Romantic relationships, " I always ask about his day and his friends and his family...and he never asks about mine it is as if he doesn't care" Perhaps he doesn't. Just because the happenings of his daily routine are essential knowings for your day doesn't mean he feels the same. I am significantly closer to my family than my husband, we each respect that the other has good reason for the amount of time spent with and on family. My husband on the other hand is more inclined to ask about the kids when he is not at home and I don't. I figure he's got it under control.
It is true that you should treat people the way that you would like to be treated in theory as a generalization, not that you should lay out a blueprint of each interaction and they should be obliged to follow.
I find these issues unsettling and even annoying. I hold my friendships in high regard, but big character flaws such as these and/or areas of extreme malevolence make me feel unsafe in the relationship. I'm faced with wondering, "Wow could this happen to me"? In my yoga practice I have been taught to listen to my mind, body and spirit. Too often, I say yes when I really want to say no. I also let conversations and debates go on far longer than they need to and will even offer explanation of my position when I know the other party either is undeserving or otherwise uninterested in being pragmatic. I'm noticing particularly in the past two days that my self awareness and growth will take more getting used to for those around me than myself. Its a risk well worth the taking.
It has been over a week on the new medication, my energy is coming back and moreover my purpose is clear. I feel focused and ready for whatever awaits even if that means a little friendship pruning.

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