Thursday, August 25, 2016

Let's build up instead of tearing down: Part 1 (Exposition)

Hi friends,

After recently doing some soul searching and deciding to make my way back onto facebook to be able to stay connected with friends both where we live now, and back in NC (and other places), I've realized that I would like nothing more than to be real with you.  I want to be transparent, and although I've already shared some rather personal things with you, like our move to NC and making friends, our adoption journey, announcing our news, bringing our son home, our diagnosis of infertility and thoughts I had about it,  my favorite age, and other things throughout the years, I also want to share with you why I felt SO prompted to write the words I wrote yesterday in "Let's build up instead of tearing down".

So here it goes....

I had taken our vehicle to the dealer to get some warranty work done as well as an oil change/tire rotate.  My son and I were going to wait in the waiting room for the work to be completed.  Now, this dealership is pretty great--we didn't even by our vehicle there but they always greet us with a smile and give little J a matchbox car or stuffie or something.  I love that they are so kid friendly with a little corner of the waiting room reserved for little kids, ready with toys, cars and a little table with chairs.

Since my little guy is only 17 months and still is cool with hanging out in the stroller for a little bit as long as there are toys, books and snacks.  I just loaded us up with the stroller when we got to the dealer and made our way back to the waiting room.  Little J did great, as usual, waiting about an hour for the car to be ready. Many people came and went from the waiting area while we were there.  There is coffee in there, so many employees come in for that and then leave quickly, other patrons were waiting for work to be done and some waited for the shuttle.

After little J and I had been there for about 30  minutes this customer came in and immediately commented on how cute little J was.  She sat a few chairs away from us and ate a salad(or something) from Whole Foods.  She would look over periodically and smile or play peek-a-boo with my son.  (Which for the record, isn't my favorite for strangers to do, but as long as they are nice I don't really mind...)  Then, when she was done eating, she looked over and started a conversation with me.  She asked how old J was, and how great that age is.  She told me that she had a 20 and 25 year old, and still missed the little years.

Then, she goes on about how tired and awful I looked.  She inferred that I looked old.  And then, she went on to say that I would "look so much better and younger with a little makeup on".

What?!?!  I thought.

I didn't really know how to react....so I didn't really say anything and didn't really have anywhere to go because although my son was playing happily in the stroller in the waiting room, he was make kind of loud, happy noises and we couldn't just go into the showroom (or so I thought at least...)

The funny thing?  I had put makeup on that morning.  I had gotten up an hour earlier than normal to get myself and my child ready, to get our vehicle there on time (actually about a half an hour early because that's the way we roll....).  I was going to fix my hair, but ended up putting it in a pony as soon as I saw the rain outside.  I put under eye concealer on, some blush (so I didn't look like a zombie with my pale skin) and some mascara.  I had clean clothes on, and real clothes instead of yoga pants.  My son was well dressed and all of our toys and books were neatly packed with snacks and other necessities for the day.

I thought I looked pretty put together.  Apparently NOT!

But what I don't get??  For real.  Is, why???, on earth, would she even say anything to me about looking tired, etc, etc?  I mean, who really care about looks anyway?  It SO doesn't matter.  Looks won't get me a job.  (Unless maybe you are a model.)  Looks won't make me a better person.  Looks won't make me a better mom.  Looks won't make me a better American.  Looks won't make me a better Christian.  Looks won't make me a better _________, you fill in blank.  You know what I mean?  Who cares about looks?

Plus, God made each and everyone of us beautiful and unique.  We were not accidents.  So, by insulting others, we insult our Creator.  I don't care if I am pretty or ugly, or whatever.  I don't get my sense of worth from outward beauty.  I get my worth from my Creator.  The One who made me, and you and everyone else.  The one who has spent time to know me, to see me, to be near to me.  The One who makes everything possible.  The One who we were created to worship.  The only One whose opinion truly matters.

Bottom line, we have no idea what's going on beneath the surface in most people's lives--especially someone we briefly meet.

And as for the tired part.  Yes, I probably looked tired.  You know, I am a mom of a toddler who goes pretty nonstop (which is awesome and a bit tiring, even though I only have one kid) AND I haven't been sleeping well for two months because of my stupid back...  So ya, I probably did look tired.  And, I probably still do.  Why go on about it or even address it?

She could have said encouraging like, "I know those toddler years can be so tiring, but you are doing a great job." or something.  Or she could have just kept her mouth shut, and stuck with how cute my baby is.

I'm all for relationships and being real, but there is a BIG difference between being REAL and RUDE.  Let's not be the latter, friends.  Life is simply, too short to be rude.  Let's choose to build others up folks!

Here is the original part of this, Let's Build up instead of tearing down but I have now titled it part 2 since I wrote this one above as the part 1 and exposition!  Thanks for reading friends.

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