Posted in Character Study

Originality

I’m an original. I love that about myself.

It’s possible that someone has the same name and initials as I do. But, I wasn’t named after anyone. When my parents came up with my name, they had no ideal in mind. Just me.

It’s important to me. Because I’ve had people assume many things about me based on my height or my upbringing or my preferences.

Sometimes they are right. Those are the people who choose to know me and know me well. They range from my college roommates to my literary book club to my coffee mates to the local baristas that make my favorite coffee every day. They include my husband who told me just today he loves the crazy that I am. Being understood by them is like the enduring hug of my three boys–the ones they give to me and to each other.

Occasionally someone reads me wrong. That’s a choice, too. And it’s a bad one. Because the original intent of my life story is meant, above all, to be readable. If something has been lost in the translation, why not ask? It might be amazing what is discovered about this original article.

Posted in Character Study

Opportunity

Opportunity rear-ended me the other day. For real.

I was driving my middle son to work on a straight-away road. I spotted the large truck making a left turn. Apparently, the person driving the white four-door thought that his obstructed view gave him the right-of-way to make a left-hand turn across two lanes of traffic as I was driving past the turning truck. I guess he thought my blasting horn, the screeching wheels behind me, and the impact to my brand-new lease vehicle were not his problems. He continued his left turn and drove off after the young man who rear-ended  me and I pulled over to the shoulder.

Too bad for him. Because he missed his opportunity. For real.

Both the young man and I agreed. The other guy should have stayed. We would both be late. We had to exchange insurance information. I would have to call the police.

We agreed on something else. We would smile. We would remain calm.

Which provided another opportunity. See, my son and I were already late.

“It’s my fault,” he said.

I didn’t completely disagree. He should have gotten ready on time. Stomping around when I reminded him to brush his teeth hadn’t been necessary. Arguing about eating breakfast could have been skipped. But, I didn’t say that.

“No, it wasn’t. And it could have been a lot worse.”

Because if I hadn’t stopped and honked, if I hadn’t been rear-ended, that guy in the white car would have struck the passenger side of the car. My son would have felt the impact. My son would have sustained the injury.

So I took the opportunity not to injure him with blame, but to impact him with the impression on how the young man and I chose to express ourselves. We didn’t stomp around and argue. We smiled. We stayed calm.

While we waited for the police, I took the opportunity to call home. No answer from my youngest son. When I returned home, I could have yelled at him for being inconsiderate. Instead, I explained the importance of answering the phone. Then I gave him a driver’s ed lesson since he is taking classes right now.

By the way, it was a good thing I gave that lesson and called the police. The day before there had been an accident in that same spot when someone with an obstructed view from a left-turning vehicle attempted a left-hand turn across two lanes of traffic.

I wonder if the city will take the opportunity to put in a controlled intersection.

In any case, I’m grateful I stayed controlled. I’m not always smiling. I’m not always calm. For real. But, God gave me an opportunity. Thanks to Him, I took it.