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Walk in Someone Else’s Shoes

Imagine you’ve got an opportunity to try something new, but are nervous about it.  Imagine you’ve got someone, a co-worker, who said they’ve accompany you or help mentor you, to bring you along.  And you’re counting on this person (lets call her Jane) to help you so you don’t have to do it alone.

Now imagine you’ve set a time/date to meet with Jane to go over the particulars, so you could get the lay of the land to help yourself visualize what it is you’ve got to get done — only to realize Jane has forgotten about you and will not be making your meeting.  Now you have to move forward with no direction and have no idea how to do it alone.

What’s your first reaction?  Anger? Disbelief at their lack of reliability?  Or … do you stop and remind yourself that the world is not all about YOU … and this person may have had unusual circumstances that gave them cause to forget or no show?

Now imagine that you’re out grocery shopping, and you see Jane shuffling down the aisle with a sick and aging person next to her side. She’s walking as slow as she can to help what looks to be a loved one down the aisle in one of those motorized carts.  Although you’re still upset with her for leaving you holding the weight of this ‘new project’ and leaving you feeling like you’ve been stranded with it, you know you can’t ignore her.  After all she’s seen you and smiled from across the freezer section.  You lift your arm in greeting, and make your way there.  After all … it’s where you were heading anyway – as you promised you’d pick up a pound of shrimp for your family.

“Hi,”  you offer and say nothing more.  You’re still judging her in your mind for not giving you the support you needed.

“Hi.  How’s the project going?” She sadly smiles.

Here’s where hopefully it dawns on you that she has a lot on her plate, and you can see the bigger picture with Jane and not judge her for the small window or piece of your experience about her that you’ve only seen from work.

“I could use some help.”  You say wondering if you have the right.

“I’m sorry.  I’d fully intended to help you along, but my mother’s health took a turn for the worse.  My father died last year, and she took a fall last week … about the same time you and I were supposed to meet.”

“Why didn’t you tell me?”

“Well, I’ve been distracted to say the least.  And I’ve got a lot on my plate … I didn’t want anyone at work to think anything less of my or jump to the conclusion that I couldn’t get it all done .. which is why I delegated that project to you.  I knew I couldn’t take care of her and work that project at the same time.”

________

I’m sure you can imagine the rest of the conversation … Jane is balancing trying to be everything to everyone and something just  had to give.  Unfortunately for you, her exit was bad timing for you and your new responsibilities.  So what’s the bottom line here?

Too many times in life, we put people in categories or stereotype them as flaky or unreliable, when maybe they’re just coping the best they can with the circumstances they’ve been given.  Instead of judging someone or being angry with how they respond (especially if its in a manner which you would ‘never’ respond) – try to look at life through their perspective.  Try give the credit for the unknowns in life.  Maybe their life is full of complications – and your one project or task isn’t the big picture.

This post is about letting our assumptions go of other people.  This post is about thinking better of people.  Instead of jumping to anger – try jumping to empathy.  Put yourself in someone else’s shoes today.  Going forward when someone upsets you – think of what’s going on in their life instead of jumping to anger and judgment. This is something we all could benefit from, myself included. I think the world would be a lot better place if we all changed our filter and took the focus off of ‘our ego’ and centered it on ‘what Christ wants us to see’.

Try it … and let me know what happens.

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Friday Blessings

This week has been amazing.  God is always good and even through struggles it is easy to count the many blessings in life, however this week has been stellar.

 

Eight months ago, I was laid off from a great job when a new manager was brought in and she essentially became a hatch ‘wo’ man.  She picked us off one by one and broke down my whole team.  It wasn’t a scenario I would have put anyone in, as this lady (and I use that term loosely) used very underhanded tactics to fire away, including lying about her staff to get them fired.Each month, in the last 8 months, we’ve not known how we were going to make each month, but God miraculously provided in ways that left little doubt that He was in full control of our present and future.

Three weeks ago I got a call to come interview for an outstanding company, which is within the same industry I left.  After 8 months of closed doors, and basically being told through prayer to wait … and focus on my gifts … I felt a tap on my heart as this is what I was waiting on.

This backdrop leads into today’s post of my weekly blessings …

 

Blessing 1 — I got hired on Monday and start today.  And the position they offered me has amazing potential.  I expected one thing and God surpassed that by leaps and bounds.  

Blessing 2 — My son got an email this morning saying he made the debate team.  He’s not been very excited about school in the last few years, because he doesn’t get challenged – and to see him so over the top excited about being on the team made my heart burst with joy.  I’m so happy that God answered this prayer.

 

Blessing 3 — I am back in touch with a teacher from my school in Okinawa, who made a big impact on my life.  

 

Blessing — 4  This sunrise this morning letting me know how much God loves us:

 

sunrise

 

 

Hopefully you can recall a few of your own blessings from this week.  I’d love to hear them.

 

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Fridays Full of Blessings

This week has been full of ups and downs.  It’s just been one of those weeks that you end up feeling so drained that you feel you’re long overdue for a vacation.  So when Friday finally rolled around, I felt like I’d been run over by a truck.

However, as worn as I am – it’s still easy to count my blessings:

1 – Although my cousin passed away, I’m blessed to know he lived a long life, surrounded by his loved ones.

2 – I received all my books in for the book launch. Screen Shot 2014-08-15 at 10.29.54 PM

3 – My son started school, and although wouldn’t smile for a first day pic (he gave me the most grouchy look he could muster) … he asked if he could retake it when I picked him up.  He said he felt bad all day for not giving me a smile on his first day of school.  I’ve got the sweetest kid.

4 – Since re-releasing my first book – I’ve seen some great reviews coming in.  This is my favorite so far:

Screen Shot 2014-08-15 at 10.27.26 PM

I love the words … ‘Anticipation at its sweetest.’   That is just great.

5 – I got called on to do the ice bucket challenge by a friend, and bravely stood as my hubs doused me with ice water.  It was frigid and about chilled me to the bone – but it was for a great cause so it was worth it.

6 – It’s Friday!!! I’m so happy to have the weekend with my family.

I hope you’re able to make your list.  No matter how tough your week has been – be sure to count your blessings.

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Fridays Blessings Roll Call

My family has been going through some trying times, and although I won’t name what those are, it’s been a challenge to keep stress from creeping up and clutching my spirit.  The blessing in this is that it’s been a great learning lesson for my kid, as we’ve talked about letting our burdens go and letting God take control.

Last night he came to me saying he was stressed about this certain situation, and we talked about how big God is and how He’s always been faithful … so they’re is no reason to doubt that now.  We prayed together, which lifted both our spirits.  It was such a good bonding moment, and it allowed my child to see that we practice what we preach.  

That was the most amazing blessing this week.  Here are a few more:

 * a friend called me to apply for a job, which could be the answer to our prayers.

 * my son alerted me to some suspicious online behavior, which allowed me to call a parent to let them know their child was chatting with a stranger.  This stranger was a predator.  We were able to nip that in the bud to avoid any detrimental issues.

 * I packed up my son’s backpack for school, and found most of the school supplies needed I already had at home, which means I didn’t have to go buy hardly any.

 * I went through all the comments on Amazon about Facing Redemption, and left comments in reply to everyone who took time to leave a review.  I left a response to most everyone, even the people who left a not so savory review. (I understand that not every book is for everyone – so I’m never offended)  The blessing is that I read over 35 reviews from people who loved loved loved it and left such heartfelt kind words, which touched my heart.  The 5-7 who left not so nice comments were still a blessing as they were still inspired to leave a review, and I still appreciated their time.

*I’m blessed to wake up each day breathing and well, to a family which is doing the same.  

 

What are your blessings?

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My little sponge

I swear I never know what will come out of my son’s mouth these days.  It continues to amaze me just HOW much he soaks up and retains.  

For example, when the election took place, I was amazed at his emphatic passion for what was going on around him.  I try to never talk politics, as many out there do enough of it already for the majority of us.  I may put a little blurb on a blog here or there, but I’m not one of those people, who are loud with their policies/political beliefs.  

I especially did not tell my son who I felt would make a better President in this last election, as how could anyone know that or see the future?  I did tell him who I was voting for, because  he asked me, but would never run down the other candidate, as that’s not how I’m made.  PLUS why impose that on a five year old.  What I did give him was knowledge on the electoral process, and what the voting process looked like.  This was back in August of 2008 when he was asking about the whole concept of voting and how/why it worked.  If he’s old enough to ask, he’s old enough for the truth.

As the election came closer, he heard from his classmates their input on each candidate.  They even had a mock election, giving them choices to vote for Red or Blue.  Red, which stood for McCain, won that day in school.  He was excited that he chose the color that won.  I congratulated him on voting and left it at that, because it’s about his power to choose!  I was proud of him.

When Obama won the office of President, my son was sad.  The parents ideals and their philosophies had filtered down to their children and gave my son the impression that Obama equalled bad.  And he knew his parents had voted for McCain too.  I had to express to him that we respected the office of the President, no matter WHO held the office.  I had to share with him, that even though mommy didn’t vote for Obama, I was excited for the new era whether it was my choice candidate or not.  I told him that the exciting part about it is was the power of the American people, and their votes.

I wanted to give him hope that President Obama would make good choices on our behalf.  That’s my job as a parent to instill hope in my child … to lighten the big stuff … to keep him from being overwhelmed with things that he can not control.

His response?  (Keep in mind, he tells people he’s 4 and 3 quarters old when they ask his age – he’s a very specific kid)

“Mom, it doesn’t matter…because when I’m 9 and 3 quarters, we’ll vote again and have another President.”

I couldn’t believe that my ‘every four years we have an election‘ talk, FROM AUGUST was still retained in that little sponge of a brain in November.  

With my son, I tried to stay in the middle on this whole topic, because I don’t want to encourage discrimination for either party – Rep or Dem – because my husband and I aren’t straight party Repubs.  We look at each candidate as a potential selection based on their own policies and performance in office. BUT I let his comment stand on it’s own, because it was his opinion and I respected that.  I respect him for trying to formulate his own ideas and sticking to his guns.  For 5 almost 6 (5.75), he thinks so many big things through!! 

Today when my husband called to check on him, as we’re both home sick.  He ended his conversation with my DH….”Okay dad, work smart!”

I could tell my husband wasn’t sure of what he said, b/c he had to repeat himself….”you know…work smart while you’re there to make your money”  He’s a funny little kid with a big man’s mind.

I can’t believe in 9 short days, I’m going to have a 6 year old on my hands.  A wonderfully created, ingenius and funny, creative and highly social child, who loves with all his heart.  I only worry that he loves too much, BUT there’s no such thing as loving too much.

Have a great day all and thank God for all your blessings….especially your children!

 

Kim

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Friday Thanks

I’ve been laying around as much as possible today.  Last night, I lay in hotel in Tulsa with my mom and son anxious of what type of sleep the night might bring.  Hotels aren’t very conducive to sleep, and me & sleep aren’t exactly on the best of terms…especially without my mattress.

Why was I in Tulsa you ask?  I was scheduled to be interviewed for their morning show, during the 8 am hour this morning, so I took my mom and son on a short road trip.

Sleep didn’t come easy last night…in fact it didn’t come at all.  I think I would have been able to except that both persons in the room with me were not breathing well, due to the crud and it’s effects on their respiratory systems.  So I patiently lay between two noise makers all night, waiting…for sleep that eluded me until 3:00 am.  I finally fell asleep only to be woken up again by my mother turning the heat up in our room, which now made it a furnace inside.  Sleep never came back to me.

There were some upsides to this however.  I got to hear my son breathe all night, knowing he was still able to sleep through his sickness.  I was able to have some quiet time to myself, listening to all the noises around me.  Unusually so, I wasn’t frustrated like I normally would have been.  In times like this prior, I was furious that I couldn’t get sleep.   This time I was just thankful to be where I was, with my family.

Thursday night, we ate dinner with some family, who live in town…and a college friend, whom I’d not seen since 1994 – my friend, Leanna, who I’d lost touch with.  She was one of those girls, that I always missed and wondered where she was.  

Thanks to technology, like FaceBook, we caught up with one another again a week ago.  It was a great night to spend time with her and her new husband.  It was just like old times, minus the alcohol and wild parties.  Same girls … same personalities  … now with way different lifestyles and attitudes.  Life is good when you find your friends are friends again after all these years.  And it didn’t hurt that my son fell in love with her.  He even told her she was ‘hubba hubba’.

Yes, I have a lot to be thankful for this Friday.

If any of you are interested in seeing the interview, you can go here.  Click on ‘Author, Kim McKay’.  BUT please keep in mind that I had little to no sleep and I was having a hard time keeping my mind ‘with it’.  Have a great Friday and remember to count your blessings.