So the other day I got into it with someone I don’t know very well. I was not on a full tank of gas as my puppy had thrown up four times the previous night into day and I wasn’t feeling well to boot. I was running late to get my daughter out the door and next thing you know I am being asked to move my car out of my own driveway. I said sure I needed some time but would be leaving shortly for work and off we trotted up the street to the bus and to walk the dogs. The minute I walked back through my door the same worker was banging on my door to move my car otherwise he couldn’t be responsible for damage that happens to it while he works on my neighbor’s roof. At this point I am calculating just need to brush teeth, slide on my Uggs and head off to teach, so I say “Ok. I am on it, give me a few more minutes.” He retorts with, “There is no more time ma’am or I won’t be responsible for your car!” at this point I start to lose my cool. I am feeling my anger rise, my skin get hot and my heart beat faster.. just then I hear my elderly neighbor, “You teach meditation right? Why don’t you just move your car?” at this point I am all sorts of angry because I never said “I won’t move my car.” In fact, it was quite the opposite I said, “Yes, no problem. Give me some time.” I don’t have the fight in me at this point. I have so many words and bad things to say but I just keep my mouth shut. It was clear that this scene was being painted from one direction. I quietly shut my door, brushed my teeth, slid on my boots and headed off to work. Tears welled in my eyes as I felt hurt and confused by the whole situation.
After a few days of reflection I realize I am really not that different. When I want something done I want it done on my schedule. I am not as demanding as the roofer but I do notice that perhaps after a while I can start to say some back handed comments. For example, when my toilet sat in my bathtub for a few weeks while my husband played with the plumbing issue, or how long it takes my daughter to pick up her things or put down her book. I am not forgiving what happened, as it is possible I could have been out of town and my car would have stayed put and they would have had to deal with it.
But the question do you teach or do meditation? Let’s address the passive aggressive nature. Just because we do something doesn’t mean we are perfect or never fail or falter. In fact, to me it has given me the ability to not react. To not say things that want to roll off my tongue in the heat of anger. Sometimes they do but more often than not I am not as reactive. Remember that life is all about practice. I am fairly certain that I will never get it 100% right but I do wake up and give it my best effort, even on the days I don’t meditate!