I am a classic analytical person. I (over) analyse absolutely everything. When I say or do something you can rest assured I have played it over in my mind a good few hundred times. I have pretend conversations in my mind preceding all major events. I will ask and answer all the standard questions before a job interview and when I need to hash out an issue, I play what I need to say over and over in my mind to the point where I could recite my thoughts almost like a speech. I also think, rethink and then think some more over everything from what to make for dinner to plans for the future.
A hard thing for someone like me to accept is when things don’t work out in reality the way they do in my mind. There are so many variables over which I have absolutely no control and this makes me incredibly nervous.
This is where I have had to practice at and learn the art of acceptance, a concept which to me was always synonymous with defeat. I mean why accept mediocrity? Why accept less than your absolute best? Why accept behaviour that goes against everything you believe in? The answer is simple. You cannot get everything right every time and you simply cannot take responsibility for the way others behave. Enter acceptance.
While in my head my children’s behaviour is a direct reflection on my ability to raise them, the truth is, they are exposed to so much more than me and my insane ramblings about right and wrong. They are influenced by teachers, peers, extended family, what they see on TV or hear on the radio and they are greatly shaped by their own journey through life. Now while I can limit their exposure on many levels I am not a communist dictator and cannot, though part of me really wants to, keep them home, in a little bubble of sunshine, shielded from the real world. Life happens. People, and sometimes not good people, will affect my children’s perceptions and beliefs. I can only hope my efforts to lay the foundations are sturdy enough for them to know and act on the difference between right and wrong. While they are not perfect kids, not by a long shot, I see kindness in them. I see how they go to great lengths to accommodate others and share and I am hopeful.
I think every parent has the same worries and concerns. We all want our kids to grow up to be doctors or lawyers or accountants. We all want them to be happy and successful and we often push our own unfulfilled hopes and dreams onto them. At the back of my mind constantly though, something I am sure affects other parents too, is just, please, for the love of all that is good and holy, please let my kid not be an arsehole.
Ah yes, acceptance. There are things I have learned to accept and thing I never will. I can accept when people behave badly, I will not accept when this affects my family. I can accept when people lie, I will not accept when they take advantage of good people when doing so. I can accept criticism; I will NEVER accept people who choose to do so behind my back rather than to my face.
Things have happened, things have been done and things have been said. While I cannot change how other people behave I can choose how I react and respond. There is a law in science, that every action has an equal and opposite reaction, this may well prove true in the near future. Based on things that have been said and done and lines that have been crossed, I have chosen a course of action. One not based on revenge or retribution, rather one that stems from the voice deep within me screaming for me to do the right thing. Doing the right thing and doing the easy thing is not always the same thing. While I cannot control how people react to this I can choose my own response and this post for me is about drawing the line once and for all.
I will not spend another moment worrying about what has come to pass and the lies and threats that have resulted. I will not worry that people (and I use the term lightly) feel threats however thinly veiled they may be are a classy way to address a situation about which they have one (emotionally subjective) side of the story. I wish each and every person wishing me dead or worse many happy returns and wonderful sleep at night. I am happy with who and what I am. I am at peace with what I have decided and here and now I am telling you all I accept you are not behaving like good people, I accept you are judging me, even those of you who don’t know me at all, I accept that you are reacting to a situation over which you have no control and I accept I cannot change any of this.
I wish each of you, those I love and those I do not, the strength and the character to accept the consequences for your own actions. My life is so, so much better than petty bullshit and that is what I am going to focus on. For one thing this experience has taught me is that class is an inherent thing, as is pride and self respect and I am ever so grateful to my mother for loving me enough to instil those values deep within me.