An Irritant that became a Pearl

Bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.                        –  Luke 6:28

When an irritating piece of sand becomes lodged inside their shells, oysters produce a secretion which eventually becomes a pearl.

Whether you walk or roll you will be in difficult situations with irritating people from time to time.  With prayer and forgiveness, you can turn the irritant into a lesson to be learned, a pearl of wisdom, so to speak!   Here is my story:

One day I went to a restaurant for lunch with my husband and his daughter.  When it was time to leave, I looked for a clear path to the exit, which was not the most direct route, and rolled around the dining area.  She said I should have asked someone to get up and move their chair so that I could fit my wheelchair through the crowded dining area.  I said I was not going to interrupt someone’s lunch for my convenience, since it was not big deal for me to roll.

A few months later, she brought up the subject again.  I told her I did not want to talk about it, it happened so long ago.  She continued, saying that she would not mind it if she had to get up and move for a wheelchair.  I told her that as long as I had a choice, I prefer not to inconvenience people.

The conversation went downhill from there.  Maybe it would have been better had I simply hung up on her.  But I did not want to be rude, and I am only human and so I found myself saying, “Don’t tell me what to do, especially since you are not in a wheelchair!”   She hung up on me.

Upon reflection, I realized that she had no right to judge my behavior, let alone get on my case about it whether she was in a wheelchair or not.   Her efforts to try to convince me that I should have done it her way showed a total lack of empathy and maturity.  I was so angry!  When a week passed and I did not receive an apology I was livid.

How do I get over this and move on?  By forgiving her and praying for her happiness for 30 days, an idea I heard on a radio show hosted by Marianne Williamson.  So I did this – it was really hard at first, but it really worked!   Even though I was angry, I prayed for her happiness.  A truly humbling action.  Eventually my attitude changed from anger to acceptance.

I have no feelings of ill will towards this person, but I do not go out to restaurants with her any more.  It was only a matter of time before she again felt the need to convince me that I needed to see the world through her eyes.  She was right, I was wrong, and that was that.  Life is too short to debate the small stuff.

I still pray for her happiness – until she learns to agree to disagree and accept that there are different strokes for different folks, how happy can she be?

As for me, I am happily rolling around enjoying myself.  I have since learned to make sure that the hostess seats me at a table that is not in the center of the dining area.  .  .  .  .  .

About Elizabeth

I love to meditate, make mandalas and crochet. Most of all, I love to share what I have learned from the challenges I have faced and the obstacles I have overcome to bring joy to others.
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