Thursday, December 15, 2011

Eleanor Roosevelt Won't Get Out of My Head

I have started and deleted about 7 blog posts. I don't seem able to complete a thought. This is not my fault, it's a genetic disease called "tangent-itis." My Grandma had it and now my sister and I both have it in varying degrees. There is a small possibility that Lisa does not have it - her issue may be simply an abundance of children vying for her attention. She has been known on occasion to call me so that I can then sit and listen to her tell each child that she can't talk to them because she is on the phone with her sister. By the time she is finished talking to them one of us usually has to go. Don't get me wrong - I completely adore my sister, she is just pulled in all kinds of directions. She spends about 40 hours a week in the car and has occasionally called me and demanded, "Say something funny...I'm falling asleep at the wheel." That is a lot of pressure! (Lisa and I also suffer from postal impairment - the inability to get things in the mail.) you see what's happened? A little tangent-itis has slipped into my train of thought. What has actually been on my mind is Calvin and Hobbes, Eleanor Roosevelt, and guardian angels.

Many, MANY years ago, when I was at BYU, my fabulous roommate, Dana, gave me this Calvin and Hobbes comic strip

She said it reminded her of me - it totally cracked me up. (Sorry it's a little blurry.) Sadly, it is true - but only to a small degree. Give me just a little attention and I am buoyed up for a long time. Give me too much and I start feeling uncomfortable. (We can psychoanalyze that at another time.)

It's amazing how a kind word or act can change your whole state of being. Yesterday, I was feeling a bit lonely...well, lonely and maybe a bit depressed. (I should not have watched BBC's North and South - again another issue to psychoanalyze at another time.) Anyway, I thought to myself, get out of the house, run some errands, be productive and you'll feel better. (I can on occasion give myself good advice.) I desperately hoped, even prayed, that I would run into a friend - just to have someone to chat with - if only for 30 seconds - just enough to get grounded again. Lo and behold, there at Smith's was my dear friend Christy. (Insert angels singing here.) Don't even attempt to tell me it was mere coincidence - I believe that God heard my prayer and gave me that little reassurance (and much laughter) that I needed...enough to keep me going for several days at least! (She has been my guardian angel more than a time or two.) This, of course, reminded me that I have been angry with Eleanor Roosevelt.

One of my LEAST favorite quotes in the entire world is "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent." I don't know the context in which this was said - but today it is often used by people to excuse poor behavior. (Example - It's not my fault she felt hurt.) Here's the deal - if your small kindnesses can have a big impact on someone - then why wouldn't the un-kindnesses? (Is that a word?) I wish I were one of those people who had the confidence to deflect insults that may come my way. I can deflect a few - but every once in a while they sneak in. The Eleanor Roosevelt quote I wish we heard more often is, “The giving of love is an education in itself.” So delete the first quote from your brain and replace it with this one. I have the feeling that focusing on quote number 2 may be the secret to being an example of quote number 1.


ohiolanges said...

I have postal impairment too. Thanks for giving it a name I can use!

I am finding that at our age - contact with friends is less frequent. Remember when we used to talk on the phone every morning around 8 and we had already been up for a couple of hours and we were planning our day around nap time? You were the person to make me laugh in the middle of those long days. You probably are responsible for my older children having a happy toddlerhood. Thanks. : )

Jill said...

Oh Michelle, I love it when you post! Your thoughts are always insightful and amusing. I'm so glad the Lord sent Christy to the store to lift you up!

michelle said...

I've never heard that second quote! It's beautiful. I'm glad you ran into Christy, and I wish I had known you were feeling down. I would have called!

Hope today is a better one.