Sometimes you do it for the right reason.
Recently I met my next oldest daughter, her hubby and the hubby’s mom who flew in from Australia to see them, for lunch. As much as I love my daughter and son-in-law I just didn’t want to have lunch with them.
Didn’t want to.
Didn’t want to break away from my side hustle (really?) get in my truck and drive all the way (10 minutes) to Mercado Juarez for lunch.
Just didn’t want to, and the kicker is I really didn’t know why.
Was it because I love slaving away at my side hustle tapping at my computer keyboard building budget reports for my boss?
Uh, give me a minute…
Was it because I can’t stand the hubby?
Love the dude. He’s a woke kinda guy and a real winner in my book.
Okay, was it possible I don’t like my own daughter?
Paaaaleeeze. I’m proud of all she’s accomplished and the fact she’s fiercely independent and has succeeded at everything she’s wanted or tried to do.
So maybe I didn’t want to meet hubby’s mom. Maybe that was the reason.
I’d never met her before but my daughter assured us she was a wonderful person and full of energy.
But the reclusive, introverted side of me wasn’t having any of that propaganda. I still didn’t want to go.
In retrospect I think I shy away from stepping out of my comfort zone as I get older.
I’d much rather chat with my wife over a glass of wine, or pound out a story in the solace of my office.
The missus, my meet-people-crutch, had other plans she couldn’t break which left me two choices. Either make up an excuse for not seeing them, or go.
Did I tell you folks I really didn’t want to go?
But I did anyway. I did something I really didn’t want to do.
And lo and behold…
Things turned out swell.
I had a great time meeting my son-in-law’s mother.
She’s sweet, exuberant with boundless energy and a really gentle soul. I can see where the hubby gets his humor and wonderful outlook on life. The woman has gone through a lot and yet she has an indomitable spirit about her.
Out of the gate she gave me a hug as if I were a long remembered, seldom seen and sorely missed relative. Then she told me how much she loved my first book.
She had me at loved my first book.
The three of them would have had a nice lunch of that I’m sure. I mean, how can you not at Mercado Juarez, but the four of us had a grand time.
For the full hour we ate, joked around, and talked. My new best friend spoke about a country I’ve only dreamed of visiting. She let me bitch about my side hustle and we all spoke of writing, reading, and the future. When the hour was up and I stood to leave my new best friend gave me a hug promising the next time she was in country she’d make a point to see me and the wife this time.
She also reminded me to tell wifey how much she missed getting to meet her and we all walked to our cars and left.
After leaving the restaurant I realized I was so set in my ways it bordered on the ridiculous. I was so tied to a routine of normalcy and complacency that if I hadn’t forced myself to do something I didn’t want to do, I would have forfeited time spent with my new best friend, her son and my daughter.
The point is I showed up even though I didn’t really want to for what I considered to be the right reason. I showed up with preconceived notions about doing the right thing by my daughter and son-in-law even though I had to go out of my way to do it.
Even though I didn’t want to do it.
And I had a really great time.
I told my wife that night over our first glass of wine. I told her what a sweet woman the mother of our son-in-law is, and how I think my wife and she would get along famously.
I even told her at first I didn’t want to go and when she asked me why I, as always, told her the truth.
I had no freaking clue.
They say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, but I’m here to tell you life continues to teach us things about ourselves no matter how young or old we are.
And yes, sometimes we have to do things we don’t want to do. Whatever the reason. But understanding the reason we do things we’re disinclined to do isn’t the tough part anyway. It’s whether or not you learn from the experience after all is said and done.
Now that’s the tricky part.
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