Thursday, April 7, 2011


          Well, this one was a toughie and quite humbling . . .
          A few weeks ago, I had been in a conversation with a lady who was talking about how we can all send messages indirectly; hurtful, wrong ones. We can be condescending without a direct attack by saying things like, “You like THAT?!?!” Or, “You shouldn’t feel that way!!”
These poor mannerisms and comments can make a person feel incredibly bad; as though THEIR thoughts, feelings are not validated and are less valuable than ours.
          We can even accomplish this with a simple look of disgust and no words.
I did both. (Overachiever . . .)

          The setting was a Thursday night. There was a meeting for parents at my daughters’ school. Their dad and I are amicably divorced and live near one another. He kindly offered to drive and we could ride together, saving gas. I accepted. There was not a lot of talk, but no friction either. (I must also insert here that though he is my ex-husband, he is an incredibly handsome man . . . you will understand why I am telling you this later.)

          We got out of the car and began walking in. I looked at his belt, which he wears all of the time, and as usual, it annoyed me. I HATE that belt. It is light tan and fabric; kind of like a tie-down for the back of a truck . . . or possibly similar to a Boy Scout belt. AND the loose end hangs down. I proceeded to say (with attitude):

ME: “Soooo, do you wear that belt because it is your favorite and you love it? Or . . . do you wear it because it is the only one you have? 
If I bought you another belt . . . would you quit wearing that one?!”

HIM: “I take it you don’t like my belt?”

ME: “I hate your belt.”

HIM: {gentle chuckle and continued walking}

          Then, we get into the meeting. Another little insert here: For some reason, I don’t see manliness and Facebook as one. (This man is VERY manly.) People had asked me if he had a FB and I always responded, “Oh no. He is the LAST person who would ever have a FB.”
          Now he has a FB.
          I glanced in his direction before the meeting began, just after we finished eating, and noticed the ex on his I-Phone . . . then I saw that Facebook logo.

ME: “Oh my goodness . . . YOU are on FACEBOOK?! What are you . . . a Facebook addict now?!”

HIM: {No verbal response, just another chuckle and he continued swiping the screen of his phone}

After the meeting, we were driving home. My brain began replaying the lady’s words from earlier in the week . . . uggghhh . . . I had overstepped a boundary. Ex-husband or not, I had erred . . .
Our next conversation:

ME: “I owe you an apology. I would like to say I am sorry for making a comment about your belt and your Facebook usage. Neither one of those things is my business; you are not affecting or hurting me with either. I should not have said what I did to you. I am not sure why I felt entitled to talk to you like that. I am working on it and I just want you to know that I will be more careful in the future. I am sorry.”

HIM: {confused pause topped with a touch of shock and another chuckle} “It’s okay. No harm done . . .”

          This was not fun, but needed to be done. Again, self-reflection sucks. I did later explain to him that though my problem was “controlling,” I was not controlling (or trying to control) what one may assume.
          It may appear that I was trying to control him, or possibly who he was talking to. The truth is; I did not have a concern if he was talking to 100 women and I did not care who his FB friends were. I was controlling something else; Strange but true.
          Though we clearly have our issues, (hence, why we are divorced) there is one thing that I cannot deny and that I must want to stay in tact for some reason . . .  The man is handsome.
          What I was trying to control was MY IMAGE of him in my mind. I have always seen him as attractive . . . The belt and FB taint that. By default, I want his handsomeness to be preserved in my mind. Again, I have no idea why, it must have simply became a habit while we were married. The funny thing is, even if we WERE married, my comments still would not have been appropriate.

I can hear Jesus, “Now Kasi, must we go over The Golden Rule yet, again? It applies to everyone; people you do not like, people you do like, AND even ex-es.”

Well, at least there is such a thing as apologizing . . . I seem to be using that skill a lot lately.

{Sigh} Learning as I go,

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