Hair Cuts & Positive Attitudes

by Michelle Lasley

Michelle Lasley is a mother, wife in Pacific Northwest learning to balance green dreams with budget realities.

February 17, 2012

Six weeks. Maybe 7. I’ve had this appointment booked since the beginning of January. And, we were late. By twenty minutes. I busted my butt to get there on-time, but traffic had other ideas. I should have just let Peter walk or take the bus from the school. I wanted to be nice, and I misjudged Friday night traffic. So, I dropped him off at a closer cross-section.

My husband walked the 3/4 of a mile home faster than it took Levi and me to get out of the neighborhood.

It’s been busy at work. It’s been busy at home. It’s been busy. I was looking forward to this for some time. It was a refresh, and then faced with disappointment. I wanted to cry.

It’s a stupid hair cut. I can reschedule. I’m hoping it won’t take another 6 weeks. But, damn, I was looking forward to this for weeks. 

The gal was very sweet. She peppered the conversation with a positive attitude when all I wanted to do was start bawling for all the things that aren’t getting done and the disappointment of not getting what I was looking forward to.

Then it dawned on me. Generally, I do have a positive attitude. I laugh to cope when stress gets too much, or ridiculousness can only be solved by that release of endorphins. But, on those instances when stress and life come to a head … I want space to revel, to pause, to appreciate this emotional life we live.

I used to not really know what to do with these emotions: sadness, gladness, madness. Then, a few emotional life events happened. Relationships ended, started, loved ones were lost. When these dramatic emotional life swings came, the emotions were so overpowering that I couldn’t not pause to reflect on them. There was no choice.

In the years since, I’ve come to appreciate that pause. I’ve come to appreciate that acknowledgement of feelings. We live emotional lives. We live with joy and disappointment, sometimes daily. Emotions are life. If we ignore them, my brain has concluded, then we ignore life.

So, I was a little put off when she focused on the positive attitude. Generally, I want the positive attitude. Generally, I’m probably the one who pushes it and might not give others that pause I know now that I need. That’s the lesson here. I need the pause. Why wouldn’t others?

I got my pause later. I am fine. I’m getting a cut and color late Wednesday night, right before we go out-of-town. I’ll have more than two hours between appointments instead of trying to manage a 12 minute drive with no traffic in Friday night rush hour. As with most things in life, it all works out.

Next time, I should pause. What could I have done differently? Gone outside, breathed? Stayed in the car a little longer? Instead, we rushed in, late, apologized. I couldn’t really talk, and I worked hard to not cry in front of all these strangers.

I don’t know what I could have done differently but next time someone expresses a deep emotional response in front of me, I can pause. I don’t have to find the solution or even the positive attitude. Acknowledge, pause, then we can solve.

Enhanced by Zemanta


Read more on this topic…

Journey Home: Reflections from 10,000 Feet

Journey Home: Reflections from 10,000 Feet

As I sit on the plane, surrounded by the hum of the engine and the chill of the window, I can’t help but notice the person in front of me repeatedly adjusting their seat, each movement a grating assault on my laptop screen. The journey back to Portland, high above the clouds, prompts reflections on the comforts of home and the complexities of travel.

The Wheel of the Year

The Wheel of the Year

The Wheel of the Year is a cyclical and seasonal calendar. It marks the changing of seasons and incorporates festivals, or Sabbats, celebrating various aspects of nature, life, and spirituality.