Monthly Archives: July 2016

Kindness

Earlier this week I found out that someone had some very unkind things to say about me behind my back. I am in a leadership position at work, so I know there will be times when people talk about me, and when they don’t like me due to decisions that I have to make. But this particular individual launched a very personal and very hurtful attack against me, and I wish I had never found out about it.

This person is someone I had a confrontation with six months ago, but I believed we had resolved things and both moved on. We had agreed to disagree and not hold anything against each other. I thought we were good.

I was shocked to find out about this attack on my character because I truly believed we had forgiven and moved on. We have had many conversations in the last six months that led me to believe all was well. To learn that these positive encounters were all fake is difficult for me.

I am someone who likes to be liked. I find it very hard when someone doesn’t like me. However, I am thickening my skin in that area because working in human resources means there are going to be people who don’t like me. I will have to enforce policies and have disciplinary conversations and make unpleasant decisions that people will not like. I’ve already experienced this side of things, and I am at a point where I am ok with it.

However, a personal attack is different. It is much more difficult to simply brush off. My feelings were hurt, and I was angry. Angry at this person for the nasty things said, but even angrier for the false things said.

In the moment I reacted in anger.

I said something about this person that was harsh and unnecessary.

Immediately after I took a swig of my water and choked. I coughed hysterically as my eyes watered and I struggled to breathe.

And I knew.

I knew that I was choking because of what I had just said. I knew I was choking to remind me that even though this person had been unkind to me, it was not ok for me to be unkind to her.

I reacted poorly to her treatment of me. Instead of holding my head up and being confident in who I was, I let her words get inside me. I let her words make me angry. I allowed her words to make me say something I deeply regret. I allowed her words to transform me into someone I don’t want to be.

I want to be kind, always. I am kind, but not always.

It is very easy to be unkind, especially when you feel hurt or betrayed or angry. But those feelings do not make it ok to be unkind.

It is never ok to be unkind.

Kindness is hard. Kindness is hard when someone has been mean to you. Kindness is hard when someone has hurt you. Kindness is hard when someone has caused you pain. Kindness is hard when someone is yelling at you, insulting you and swearing at you.

Kindness is hard.

Be kind anyway.

The alternative is unkindness.

We already have too much unkindness in this world. We already have too many angry voices, nasty words and hurtful actions. We already have too much pain and too much sorrow. We already have too many people who think it’s ok to be unkind.

Choose a different path.

Refuse to take part in the unkindness.

Choose love.

That’s my goal the next time I’m faced with unkindness.

 

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4 Years Ago: What I Didn’t Know…

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Today was a birthday party for my niece’s 4th birthday. Her actual birthday is tomorrow, but the weekend is always better for a party!

Every time I see this beautiful, sweet little girl, my heart melts and I fall head over heels, just like I did the very first time I saw her four years ago.

The day is still clear in my mind. It was two weeks before her due date when the phone rang early on Tuesday July 10th 2012. My sister’s water had broke and they were on their way to the hospital. A few hours later I was in my car, driving from Oakville to Windsor in what felt like the longest car trip imaginable.

My excitement at becoming an aunt was unfiltered and unashamed. I would tell anyone who would listen that I was going to be an aunt. I’m sure my friends and co-workers were quite sick of hearing me talk about it.

She didn’t make her appearance until the very early hours of July 11th, and I saw her for the first time later that day.

There was so much I didn’t know before that moment when I first held her.

I didn’t know I could love someone so much or so quickly.

I didn’t know how fiercely protective I could be of another human being. When the doctor came in to check her over and she started to cry, it took every ounce of willpower I had not to snatch her from him and then knock him out for making her cry.

I didn’t know that simply holding her and watching her while she slept would bring such joy.

I didn’t know that she would consume my thoughts every day, and how anxious I’d be until I was with her again.

I didn’t know that every time I shopped or ran an errand, I’d fine something that I just had to get her.

I didn’t know how much I would miss her when I wasn’t with her.

And I didn’t know that once I moved back, I’d never want to leave because I could not stand the thought of not being near her, and there for her as she grows.

I just didn’t know…

Four years later, none of the above has changed, except that if possible, I love her even more.

She is perfect. She can do no wrong. Even when she misbehaves, she is still the most adorable thing on earth. She is the smartest little girl I have ever known. She is the funniest little girl I have ever met. She is precious, angelic and holds the key to my heart.

How did I ever live without this beautiful little person?

I look at her and find such happiness seeing pieces of people I love in her.  I even see pieces of me in her – something that gives me more joy then I ever thought possible.

Loving her gives me strength. She gives me strength to get through the hard days because I need to be here for her. I need to walk through life with her. I need to make sure she is happy. I need to protect her from harm.

I didn’t know being an aunt would be such an important job. I didn’t know how much I would love it.

And I didn’t know that one sweet girl could bring me such unending joy.

Happy 4th Birthday to my gorgeous niece!