I decided to grab some petrol on the way home from work one night recently.
It had been a long day. I had the flu, our hot water heater had a meltdown and the emergency plumber had created a dent in bank account. It didn’t stop there, my daughter had an accident with some boiling water and had been in hospital a few days before getting patched up. Wound management was still ongoing. So, a lot on my mind. And then I got petrol, and went to pay for it.
My card was declined. No money in my account. I had no idea how much was in there and had no cash. What could I do? I gave the operator my license and said I would be back soon. I’d race home and grab some emergency cash.
He started filling out the forms and I had an idea that maybe my husband was around and had some money. Could I call him I asked the operator? Sure.
I went back to the car to grab my phone and there was a lady in a four wheel drive waiting behind me. She shouted at me as I neared that I’d taken my time.
I moved my car out of the way for her, parking to wait for cash to arrive, so thankful that someone had the cash! She yelled at me again as she went in to pay for her petrol. And glared at me from her as car as she drove away, her two young children in the back.
Maybe she was having the worst day of her life. Maybe more things were going on for her and someone taking an extra five minutes at the petrol station was the final straw. I don’t know.
But I started thinking about grace. The ability we have to be respectful and courteous, and not just to other people but ourselves as well. I don’t know her circumstances and I can’t judge her. But to ourselves. The ability to take a moment, to let things be, to respect ourselves and how we show up in the world.
I know it’s a huge battle. I’ve really been fighting the urge to punch people with no concern or respect right in the face myself!! But then I’m not being kind to me. I’m not keeping a centre that’s balanced. I’m being thrown around by everything that’s throwing me around. And that’s not good for me, or anyone around me.
So here’s to being more graceful. To keeping our balance even when it’s tough, and helping everyone else to do the same.
Now I’m off for a nice meal with my family, cuddling my kids and telling them I love them.