This post has been brewing for a while now. It’s one I wasn’t ever going to tackle as it comes from a place inside of me that is so bitter I feel guilty for indulging it.
But after the day I have had, it needs to be said.
About a year ago now, myself and another person were at the sharp end of some bullying to do with a certain Christmas party we were organising. It wasn’t to the liking of a group of people and so we become targets. The very fact that we were organising this party in our own time from the goodness of our hearts seemed to be of no concern to these people.
We continued on planning the party and it was set to be fantastic.
On the way to the party to chop up salad one Saturday morning, I was written off the road by another driver. I never got to the party I helped organise. Opting for time in an emergency department instead. The entire events in the lead up to this gathering still leaves a sour taste in my mouth and I will never forgive myself for getting in that car that day and not seeing that car coming at me. Because what did I end up with in the end for my giving…pain. Inside and out.
I have spent a lot of time recovering from that day and something that at times comes to mind is the fact that I spent 15 years working in a place that never said thanks. Not once. Not even when I resigned because I knew that the bullies would eat me alive if I went back being the forgetful mess I had become.
At times in my career I worried my passion for caring and giving was to the detriment of my family. But I pushed on with it because it was financial security. And at times I know I wasn’t the nicest woman when I walked in the door at home. Sometimes I was so frustrated with the anti-health environment I worked in, I am pretty sure it would dribble out in my tone or lack of patience.
During my recovery too, I have wondered why in my moments of need those I needed were not there. It has been like a broken record over and over and over in my head. And all I can think, is that maybe I never gave good to them in the first place to deserve the time and understanding when I was so desperate for it myself.
Now that I run my own business, I am in control of my giving and that feels good. I give hard when I know that what I have to offer is appreciated by those that have little to offer me. But pull back when I sense I am being taken for a ride. I have that control now. And it’s only me that I have to answer to when I look at my pissy bank balance. And even then, when I do, I know that no $ in the bank could ever replace the feeling I get having time with my girls when they walk in from school. Something I haven’t really had ever with them as I returned to full time work when Miss M was 1.
Today, I ended up with sick kids at home. The juggle was tricky. At first I thought they were playing me and I was really bloody frustrated. But by later in the afternoon I realised they weren’t. They actually needed to be home resting. And I needed to be there for them. A little like those vows some of us take when we decide to take someone’s hand in marriage. Through sickness and in health…
Giving feels really good to most of us most of the time. But when giving to others means that those on your inner circle suffer I think something needs to give.
Because sooner or later, you’re going to turn around and those that you gave to will have all disappeared and those that you should have been giving to are nowhere in sight either – because they’re sick of giving.
Sick of giving to someone that gave nothing back.
It’s a vicious fucking circle.