Blame it on 80’s sitcoms. You remember the ones… where the moms were always super mature and patient. In 30 minutes, the kids would act like total idiots and the mom would smile knowingly at the end when the kid learns their lesson magically attesting that mom was right all along.
That wasn’t my experience. Turns out when you act like an idiot, it can hurt your mom. Turns out that not all moms are totally mature by the time they have children and can shoulder their kids’ bad behaviors knowingly believing that all will work out in time. Sometimes moms will say, “the hell with ya.” If only temporarily.
I use the mom example because we can all relate to it. The point is, it’s damn hard to keep showing up for people. Especially when we might feel hurt by them or maybe just confused by their action or lack of it, and the worst, being ignored.
I always look for an optimistic twist. But, I’m as human as anyone and prone to overthinking every possible reason that I might have been forgotten or ignored. And, trying to figure out someone else’s thoughts … that’s a recipe in disaster. By the time you hash through what they must be thinking, you probably are blaming yourself and/or incredibly pissed off. Thus, turning a slight into full blown drama, if no where else but your own mind. Let’s face it though, often the drama materializes into gossip with another person or an actual fight with the offender. Leading to everyone feeling gross. Overtime, we might find ourselves not showing up anymore. Keeping score. “I texted the last 4 times, I’m not texting them anymore.”
I’m blessed with coach training but even more blessed by living with Cary to help me keep perspective on showing up. He never worries about a slight. Never takes it personally and encourages me to keep showing up. I don’t know how he does it but what I have learned is that following his lead, always feels better.
I’m not a mother but as I age, I am tapping into motherly wisdom. I got slighted recently and discussed my hurt with one of my most trusted humans. The two of us agreed to not waste a minute trying to figure out why or what the person might have been thinking. I discussed how it stinks to keep showing up. Then, I channeled my best Elyse Keaton, Claire Huxtable, and Maggie Seaver and got over it. This relationship is important enough for me to continually and consistently show up.
If someone you love is wearing on your patience to keep showing up, hang in there. Don’t over-show up to the point that causes you undue hurt. For example, if they are known for not returning your communications, a common slight, still check-in, in ways that are appropriate for that relationship. The joy of showing them you care may have to be enough. The consistency of your showing up will build trust overtime. You might find that all your showing up will pay off in the future. Either way, showing up is love, and love always feels better.