|Above it All|
Sometimes it’s Not You
A few days ago, my sisters took me to a five star restaurant and I had the chance to recall a very important lesson; it’s not always me.
We got to the restaurant a little before time for dinner seating and were told that the bar area was open; that we could eat there. One of my sisters explained that we hadn’t seen each other for a while and wanted to catch up. She batted her eyelashes and smiled her amazing smile and just when I was about to go into feminist mode to correct her, the manager opened up dinner seating just for us. I recalled the lesson from yesterday and decided to leave well enough alone.
We sat down and our server, a tall beautiful woman glided over and began to do her thing. We quickly began to notice that every time she came to the table to clear a plate, remove the crumbs or serve a dish, she explained each and every detail.
“I’m going to take these plates, but don’t worry, I’ll bring back a clean one.” She said.
We laughed about it at first, but then we she tried to tell us which fork to use we were real tired of her, Let-me-help-you-country-people-know-how-to-eat-in-the-big-city routine.
In the past, I know that I would have taken this personally. I would have wanted to leave and eat someplace where people treated all paying customers the same. I would have allowed the woman’s behavior to be a refection of me but this time I made a choice to see that her actions were a result of her own stuff and that if she didn't do something about it, she would suffer the consequences.
As I looked more closely, I could see that this physically beautiful woman was not comfortable with her own self. I began to notice small signs of insecurity as she served us. When more customers came in and the job was a bit more demanding, she grew even more insecure.
“You’ve eaten a lot of bread, would you like more?” She said to a couple seated at a table behind us.
My frustration became pity and I felt for this woman who may not have dined in a restaurant like this one before working there.
I imagined the children she might be working to support or the classes she took during the day. I thought of a customer who may have yelled at her for taking a plate because they didn’t know it was being replaced.
All of this may be true and none of it may be; the point that I’m making is that someone else’s behavior towards you may have nothing to do with you.
We had an amazing dinner and a wonderful time with one another. We had the unusual behavior to laugh at, feel for and then analyze.
And we had the wonderful opportunity to see up close and personal that while every lesson is for you, the source of the lesson is not always about you.
Be you, be well, be observant.
Bertice Berry, PhD.