Sunday, February 21, 2010

Day 1/7 My Interdependent Action for Today

(See the February 20 entry for an introduction of “Interdependence”. If February 20 doesn’t show beneath the video, check out the earlier blog entries on the lower left side bar.)

Noticing an art supply store had a clearance sale, I walked in to check out the goods. I was feeling rather low due to an earlier event and wanted a distraction. It was more than I hoped for—the shop was chock full of miscellanea from Christmas doo-dads to bizarre erasers and stuffed animals, not to mention the paper, paint and charcoals you come to expect. It was a bit overwhelming so I asked the tired and rather aged lady behind the cash how long the sale would last.

“ ‘Til its gone,” she said, “but hopefully not longer than two more weeks. My husband died and I’m selling. I’m closing out ...”

Although my heart went out to her and wanted to comfort, I was also feeling quite low myself; I had little energy for another. Still, I weighed those feelings against the need of community and in the sharing of story and thought, a few sentences wont hurt. I also questioned, maybe she didn’t want comfort, perhaps she was tired of telling her story. So, I asked instead, “how’s that for you?”

She told me a little more of her life and, although tragic in many ways, I didn’t get overly involved. I heard and validated her, then thanked her for telling me. It seemed enough for both of us. I didn’t drain myself in trying to fix someone who not only didn’t want to be fixed but just needed to be heard and I didn’t overextend my stay. And, while I do not know her thoughts, I feel she felt heard and perhaps somewhat less burdened with another to share her load. I, as a result, felt less troubled with my own issues and more a part of my community. I feel we both gained by that transaction.

No comments:

Post a Comment