Monday, December 6, 2010
ANOTHER MORAL DILEMMA
I have many allergies, but I don't want to take medication, so my eyes water quite often.
I was in charge of an event and I arrived early to meet with the coordinator. My eyes had been watering during my trip to the event. We finished the set-up and we sat down and began to chat. I had left my purse with Kleenex in it in my car.
After some "getting to know you" chatting, she asked if I had children and I said that I didn't; [something I NEVER do is to initiate a conversation with people by asking about children because I know from personal experience that some people do not want the subject mentioned after the loss of a child] of course, since she had broached the subject, I felt comfortable asking if she had children and she replied that she did, but that she had lost a son and then she suddenly reached out and embraced me. She whispered how kind I was!
Oh, no! My eyes were watering and she thought that I was crying because of her tragedy.
What to do--what to say--what a dilemma. Of course, the answer was not to do or say anything; just continue to embrace her. Several days after the event, I received a note from her and she wrote that I was the kindest, most compassionate person she'd ever met.
I believe that I am kind and I believe that I am compassionate, but I also know that I am not the "KINDEST" nor the
"MOST COMPASSIONATE"! When I showed the note to my brother, he said, "If she only knew that you are really about as compassionate as an old brown shoe!" He is always so colorful with his zingers! I winced!
He asked, "So, you didn't like my metaphor?"
"It WAS NOT a metaphor.", I said haughtily!
"Oh, I suppose it was a simile?", he asked.
I answered, "No, IT IS personification: giving human characteristics to inanimate objects."
He said, "It's just a good thing she didn't see the SMARTY-PANTS side of you or she wouldn't think you were kind OR compassionate!"