IT’S NOT ABOUT ABILITY OR INABILITY,
RATHER IT’S ABOUT AVAILABILITY When my three daughters were just perky kids running here and there all over the house and I, as a working mom, was working my butt off at the office, there were days when the maid would call me up and tell me that one of the kids was running a fever or the other wasn’t eating her food, or the eldest won’t go to school. Well, in matters of illness, I’d have no second thoughts bout rushing home. My boss would have to put up with that one, like it or not. Other than that, I’d have the maid bring the errant little one to the phone and we’d talk. In this instance, the naughty little angel would spill her heart out and I’d be there glued to my seat listening while the clock was ticking off the minutes like a taxi meter. Yet it was worth it all. I knew she was smiling when the conversation finally ended. A mother can sense that easily. I wasn’t trained to be a mother; no woman is ever prepared to become one. Even if you have seen your mother, aunts, grandmother, and lady friends do it… it’s never really learned until you are in it yourself. But the one great lesson I have learned is this --- be available. No matter if you’re late in the night preparing for a sales meeting the following morning, when she comes to you for whatever reason – stop what you’re doing and be with her. She’s the number one person in your life --- so let her know it! You can’t be Perfect Mom, but you can be Available Mom! And that is certainly perfect, no matter how you look at it. J
HIGH-END STYLE, LOW-END BUDGET Seeing the long line of stores to our right and left, I began anticipating sore feet and drained pockets at the end. My friend’s pocket, that is. At least once a month, my good friend takes her daughters shopping at the mall. (This time she asked me to come along.) They’re girls and they always need things, especially dresses. Any mother would agree to that. Lol so then we in unison took the first store to our right. The girls moved through the racks with meticulous precision checking every detail for style, color, and quality. When nothing met their liking, we moved on to the next store. The same process was repeated…. and on to the next store and the next and so forth. Occasionally, they would come to one nice item, try it on, and then check out the price with their mom. That’s where she asserted her authority…. Well, as far as the budget was concerned. Lol they already were familiar with the ‘special look’ she gives them when the price isn’t right.
Until ….we came to this one store where her youngest daughter saw this lovely pink trendy dress. I must admit it was lovely indeed. It too fit her just right. Yet the price wasn’t --- right…much to her mother’s dismay. I knew that we had a problem coming. I saw her beautiful dark eyes look at her mom pleading to buy the dress. “Just this once” she said. “…and I’m going to wash the dishes for a whole month!” Her other daughter waited in silence. It must have seemed an eternity but before my friend could decide, an idea crossed my mind. Without any fuss, I went to the next row of clothes, took out one simple item in the same color of the dress she was holding. It was of good material, good cut, and of a basic simple design. No frills. Then I moved on to the accessories section… picked out one classic necklace. And moved up to the counter where it held ladies shoes, chose one in a color which complemented the dress -- then I brought these all back to her and said “Try these on.” Grudgingly she did. We waited outside the fitting room. After what seemed another eternity, she came out. And lo!!!! What a lovely sight! She looked just lovely --- beautifully together in perfect style. And topping it all--- she was smiling and liking it. When her eldest sister looked at the bill, she simply said “Wow!” Meaning, we got all that stuff for a price much lower than the original high-end fashion dress that she wanted. That’s high-end style with a low-end budget. You see, expensive stylish clothes don’t always make the best buy or outfit. It’s the woman wearing the clothes that matters, not having the clothes wearing the woman. That goes the same for the men, too. :-)
RESPECT IS EARNED ESPECIALLY IN THE HOME Several of my male colleagues make quite a good impression at the work place. Bright, friendly, funny, impeccable manners – everything that makes everybody like them, respect them. I find that quite ‘interesting’ especially when I’ve been privy to the stark contrast of that particular behavior within the confines of their own homes. Having met their families and been invited to their homes on occasions, I have come to observe this ‘phenomenon’ up close. When I see children behave out of ‘fear’, I’m not quite impressed by that brand of docile obedience to their father. When I sense the wife ‘wary’ in her talk and actions so careful not to offend her spouse, I tend to suspect that. Because frankly I didn’t get to see or feel any love there--- that special bond which loving families normally exude inside and outside the home with or without the watching eyes of friends and strangers. This then made me think --- the true strength of a man isn’t just in how respected he is at work, it’s most importantly how respected he is at home. What a person is in his or her own home is the real ‘you’. Give this a thought, how can your family ever love and respect you if all they get from you is verbal abuse, inconsiderate behavior, or selfish and thoughtless acts? Or that they don’t see or feel you respect them as individuals, too? How can they respect you when you are two different persons in and out of the house? When you conduct yourself in stark contrast to the person you are as they see you inside the home, won’t that be sending off confusing signals to your family as to your sincerity, honesty, and credibility? Do you think they could respect that duality of character? I don’t think so. They might ‘fear’ you, but respect I won’t be too sure about that. Because respect is earned, not demanded or imposed. It’s given freely to deserving ones -- men and women (Mothers, pay attention, too) of good solid character. And this is gained firstly in the home with your family. In this environment your true character is run to the test day after day interacting with members of your family. How you perform in it determines the amount of respect you will get. A well respected husband or father will easily command the effortless affection, trust, confidence, loyalty and support of his wife and children. ‘Fear’ doesn’t lurk behind it at all, not a trace. Nobody ‘fears’ a person they so respect and adore. When a man has worthily earned his family’s love and respect, then it would certainly be no trouble at all earning the respect of others outside his loving home, won’t it? :-)
More in the next post. The Muses are working on overtime now. It seems that they're dancing up quite a good deal of writing dust. lol I hope I can keep up :-) God bless you all.
posted on Wednesday, April 19, 2006 11:06 AM