One thing (as you know, there are many) that frustrates me is when people feel sorry for themselves. Everyone faces adversity to some degree, a lot of which is out of our control. How we react to those difficulties, however is a conscious choice. I like to vent about things in soundbites, but I know that in the grand scheme of things, I’ve been dealt a pretty nice hand.
Sometimes this attitude is perceived as uncaring or harsh.
Tonight David, who tends to dwell on the negative, told me he’d had a really bad day. At first he didn’t want to talk about it but I made him sit down and tell me, thinking it was something very serious. He was upset because in their gym hockey tournament game the score was tied and it came down to a shootout. He was the goalie and gave up the winning goal, losing the game for his team.
For a 4th grader, I imagine it was very disappointing. And I can understand him being upset for a while, but he continued to pout about it. So I reminded him that there were people in Haiti at that very moment who had no home to live in, no water to drink, and were buried under rubble. So while I didn’t want to minimize what David was feeling, I think putting events into proper perspective was the right thing to do.
© Jennifer Alys Windholz, 2010