Day 17b – Forgiveness and Others – Friends

Day 17b – Forgiveness and Others – Friends

It’s still so strange to me that this “others” category was so massive :). Did her publishers tell her all she had was 21 days and she had to fit everyone in? :).

I’m sure some categories I think are “easy” others find “hard” and vice-versa. To me, friends is quite easy. I have been blessed with incredible friends who I treasure. When I ponder about forgiving friends, I have to go way back, to first grade, to find something. I skipped kindergarten so was a “young kid” in first grade when age issues seem to matter. My two friends used to chase me around at recess calling me “baby Waller” until I cried. Back then teachers thought it was best to let kids work these things out on their own.

This is intriguing to me on various levels. First, I see the events from third person. I don’t remember the in first person. I don’t know that I remember them as much as I remember the memory of them. Next, how does the mind latch onto something that happened so young and consider it important? Surely millions of other things happened to me in those early years that were far more important, that I don’t remember at all. Why do I allow this to linger and impact my adult state? Heck, the girls were just first graders with unformed brains. They’re probably amazing people now. To “blame” them over whatever insecurities they had when they were 6 (or whatever) seems silly.

So, all that aside, my friends over the years have been amazing. Supportive, kind, helpful, and there when I needed them. If anything, I am struck by how a number of them currently are dealing with enormously challenging issues and holding their heads up through them. They are awesomely inspiring. It reminds me every day that, no matter what I’m facing, there are those out there who have far harder things to deal with. The more we all help each other out, the more we all rise and thrive and find joy in these preciously few days we have on Earth. It’s stunningly true that we simply don’t know how long we have. Each day is a gift.

Day 17a / Forgiveness and Others – CoWorkers

Day 17a / Forgiveness and Others – CoWorkers

I’m breaking this “others” category down into pieces as it is just too big to tackle at once. So today I’ll think about the coworkers category.

I love the BellaOnline editor community and all the editors here. Over the past decade we only rarely have had an editor who is innately grumpy, and usually they fade away on their own. I have learned over the years to try my best, be patient, and to try not to take it personally if someone is cranky. People are shouldering great burdens in life.

So, when I think about “forgiving” coworkers, I have to think further back. If I ponder the topic, there are specific memories that bubble up. For example, when I was barely twenty I worked at a biotech, and after using the restroom my skirt caught in my pantyhose so my entire backside (underwear) was being shown. Two fellow secretaries let me walk right past them like that. I then came past them going in the other direction and a guy gently pointed out the problem to me. The women shrugged and said “we were going to tell you”. Hmmmm, when? I remember being not upset as much as confused. Why wouldn’t they have told me?

In two separate internet jobs I was promised money for work and was simply never paid. They kept stringing me along, having me do more and more work, often under great stress, and in the end I had to walk away without anything. That was frustrating.

But I look at the first situation as the women playing a casual prank. I didn’t mind, and they weren’t really being malicious. Just curious how long it would last. In the second, the people undoubtedly would have paid me if money started rolling in. They had high hopes for their projects. If I stopped coding their hopes went away, so their best chance was to keep me at it as long as I’d go.

In general I’ve been blessed at working in high-tech in quiet, supportive environments with people who were friendly and helpful. I had all sorts of helpful, supportive bosses. I had coworkers who were fun. Part of it was that I worked in an in-demand field and was an in-demand person, so I could carefully vet, pick, and choose where I was. I turned down some jobs because they didn’t seem a good fit. I switched jobs if I got bored.

Since 1999 I’ve worked from home doing web stuff, so it’s even more true that I have wonderful, ideal co-workers. I love my BellaOnline management team. They are supportive, kind, and smart. The editors are great and want to learn and thrive. So to me this is the ideal.

A friend of mine has been suggesting some fairly lucrative “real” jobs for me to take, but they involve an hour commute each way plus of course the actual time. The idea of “losing” all those hours every day, and not being able to fit in the things I love, gets to me. Sure I could use the lots-of-money. But I’d rather be poor and really happy with what I do, rather than rich and giving up on this all.