Woke up to my mother calling me, lecturing me. Completely unexpected and not the way I thought I would start the day. I hung up on her.
Not the best or most considerate move, but my first immediate thought was “negative energy, protect your mental state.” Ten minutes later after I grabbed my coffee and walked to the train, I called her back. No answer. I sent her a text saying I understand where she’s coming from, why my impulse was to hang up, i love her and hope she has a good day.
Definitely could have handled that situation better, but it’s hard for me to sit back, assess and diffuse a situation in the moment, in the face of aggression.
What I DID learn from this morning’s “drama” however was:
1) The importance and impact of aggression and anger: Whether a person is in the right or wrong, I don’t want anyone to feel how I felt this morning or begin their day like that– feeling attacked and on the defensive. It could set a negative tone for the rest if the day. In this case, I can admit I was 72% in the wrong, but was unaware until she brought it to my attention. I had no idea how she was feeling, and it was clear she was sitting on it, letting boil up so she could have a cathartic release when she finally got me on the phone. Rather than sending a text when she was initially bothered or considering her delivery which would have led to a better outcome.
I can’t control others, but it was a lesson on how I choose to deliver my critiques or anger towards others in the future. It was also a lesson in stepping back, removing my defenses and seeing the fact that the majority of the wrongdoing was on me.
2) Protecting my inner peace and mental state: Hanging up the phone as an action was not correct, but the first mental instinct was. I sensed negative energy that seemingly came out of nowhere, and I refused to let that set the tone for my day. I made sure I was patient and thanked the woman who prepared my iced coffee, I inadvertently made the elderly Jehovah’s Witness woman standing next to the subway turnstile laugh with my super enthusiatic Bonjour! response; I called and texted my mother back with good intention and love behind my communication. Conscious decision or not, I didn’t want to continue spreading the aggression and bad vibes around. My day and spirits were instantly lifted because of this.
I’m not a fan of the holier than thou approach, I hope this entry doesn’t come across this way. I was just pleased with the accidental lessons learned and reflection that resulted from a negative circumstance and wanted to keep a record of this moment.