Monday, September 12, 2011

Karma Karma Karma Chameleon..

I am grateful for all of my experiences. Even the really, really harsh ones.

As I was standing in a friend's kitchen tonight, I stood and listened to a girl tell her story. How she grew up, some of the hardships she endured - just a really interesting story.

She went on to share with me how she recently lost her grandfather, he was murdered at the age of 80-something. The really tough part - her sister found his body.

As I stood there listening, I began to think about how lucky I was to never have lost someone so brutally. I asked her how she was coping, and how her sister was doing, and she said, "We're fine." I realize that is the customary answer when a stranger asks you those types of questions, but the difference this time, I was actually taking a moment to listen.

When I was working, I would have asked the same question and I might have heard her answer. I would have glazed over her hurt with some "stock response" and went on to the next person at the party. (It was a party.. btw.) Sure, it's not normal "kitchen" conversation with a stranger, but I asked (genuinely) and waited for her answer.

I share this with you all because I have come to the realization that losing my job has afforded me the opportunity to sloooow my mind down. I am processing information more clearly. I am listening. Truly listening for the first time, in a looong time.

When I ask someone, "How are you?" I am genuinely waiting for your response. I suppose the lack of constant information overload and constantly constructing stories and plotting marketing strategies has allowed space in my mind for people.

In these past 6 weeks or so, I have listened to "new friends" and "old friends" share some pretty hard core issues. I have responded with patience, not with my typical pushing back and snarky responses. If you had an issue in the past, and you just kept talking about it, I would sometimes respond with a quick, "get over it."

Is it possible... have I learned empathy and compassion? Am I more sincere?

Instead of becoming bitter over what has happened, I am choosing to look at what I am learning.

4 comments:

TV's Take said...

Great post! Sounds like your gaining sympathy or emphathy in some cases. You've been hurt a lot lately so your more empathetic to those that have wounds. Kuddos to you for taking this experience and doing something positive with it.

becca said...

great post and the wuote is correct "let life make you better not bitter"

becca said...

great post and the wuote is correct "let life make you better not bitter"

Leanne said...

I hear you on this one, so loud and clear. I have said to a number of people that since losing my job, I feel like this cloud has been lifted off of me and I can actually SEE.FEEL.HEAR.LIVE. I'm noticing it specifically with my kids. I think things all happened so quickly pre-layoff, that I didn't feel life. I was just there, going through the motions without really feeling it. Now, I am LIVING it. Does that make sense? hope so.

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