Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Not My Best Work: Getaway

The Getaway Coward
This shot is not my best work. But it did not reflect my best day. It was just at the beginning of dawn on South Michigan Avenue in Chicago and I was getting ready to go home and shower before going to a client meeting in Oak Brook, Il.

In so many of my relationships and friendships I live with one foot out the door. I want to be heard but I do not want to listen. I want things that matter to me to be done a certain way, but I do not care to always hear what is important to others in how things could be done. I am not like this all the time, but I have moments like we all do. Moments where I can be condescending and harsh and have all the answers for everyone else while my own life is...um...less than perfect. 

This would be my final morning on this block in this neighborhood and in front of this building. Because I had yet again proved that I lived with one foot out the door. I love that my car is fast and used to be a cop car. It is the perfect getaway vehicle for leaving the scene. 

Across the street and several floors up was someone who was likely wondering what my issue was and what they did to bring on my weird. Several floors up was a scruffy dog named Harry that I would never see again. Several floors up was the scene of a crime. The crime of no courtesy and kindness. The crime of no mutual respect. But wait! There's more! Through messenger I had one foot out the door in one of the most precious friendships of my life and tossed that away by the criminal act of anger from a place of selfish hurt. And I was in my getaway car.

I had two conversations last night. One was with a friend of mine who was lamenting all the sharks in her life. All the judgement she faced. I was kind and good and listened and was a good friend who had both feet planted on the ground and had full mutual respect and was present. The other was with one who told a truth that I was not as comfortable with and I let my wounded bruised ego lash out. This time, I kept both feet planted on the ground and stuck it out until I could make what I made wrong as right as I could. I was kind in the end and I listened in the end and I was a good friend in the end because I did not have one foot out the door. 

There is a quote I recently read. It is by the late David Rackoff. 

“Is there some lesson on how to be friends?
I think what it means is that central to living
a life that is good is a life that's forgiving.
We're creatures of contact regardless of whether
we kiss or we wound. Still, we must come together.
Though it may spell destruction, we still ask for more--
since it beats staying dry but so lonely on shore.
So we make ourselves open while knowing full well
it's essentially saying "please, come pierce my shell.”

We all have those moments in life that we are less than proud of. We all have those patterns that we know are messed up. We all have our faults and when we have one foot out the door, we are deliberately standing on that lonely shore and do not dive in. 

We are gonna get it right and we are gonna get it wrong. On the moments we get it right, that is wonderful. On the moments we get it wrong we have a choice. We can make it right or we can getaway. 

I hope we all learn to keep both feet in. 

When I getaway, it is not my best work. 

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