Consider the Source

I have this great purse.  I received it as a gift from Leslie, one of the young women I worked with at Blue Haven Pools a few years ago.  It is the Most Amazing Purse Ever.  It’s my “traveling purse”.  Whenever I get on an airplane, regardless of the reason, this is the purse I will travel with.

As I walk through the airport carrying it, the facial expressions of the people around me are telling:  horrified looks from the very obviously fashion-aware, haughty sideways glances from eyes afraid to meet mine when I turn and look and my favorite, heads shaking from side to side.  There’s also the shy smile from toddlers, girls and boys alike, who want to touch, petting my purse as they absorb the soft, pleasing texture of the feathers and “oh-hell-yeah” nods from discerning lovers-of-all-things-pink, the camaraderie instantaneous.

My purse is black satin, with lips cut out in different shades of red, pink and orange, also satin, proclaiming “Kiss” and “Me” in white embroidered cursive letters.  It has one black strap with a pink drawstring, black inner lining and a hot pink feather boa sewn around the upper edge.  When I received the purse, I instantly fell in love with it.  Leslie was dead-on when she gifted me with it.  It screams, “Donna!!”

Not a chance anyone’s going to steal it, eh?  You’d see them running a mile away, pink feather boa providing instantaneous identification!

I love this purse!

Wouldn’t it be sad to leave it on the shelf in my bedroom closet, afraid of what other people might think as a I meander through the airport?

I’m not sure why some people feel it’s necessary to pass judgment.  Glares, sneers and snickers, cruel comments, pointing and even worse, causing physical injury.  I remember it starting as early as elementary school.  Children can be so cruel.  Junior High is the worst – young girls are very catty and boys start serious bullying.  As adults, we judge differently, thinking no one notices or sees.  We develop sarcasm and indifference.

I remember many an occasion during my school years when I’d be hurt by some comment made to me by a classmate.  My Mom and I would talk about the person who made the remark.  What kind of person is he/she?  How do they behave in school?  Are they considerate of others?  Do they pick on more than just me?  Do they have good grades?  What kind of reputation do they have?  Are they mean-spirited all the time?  My Mom always went one step further though.  She’d remind me that regardless of what I see in school, they go home.  And we’d speculate what it might be like for that person once they walk in their own front door.  Are their parents interested in their friends?  In what they did all day at school?  Do they talk about any problems they might be experiencing?  Or do they come home to disinterest and abuse or neglect?  I learned how to forgive others for judging me.

Consider the source.  When I hear comments about my purse or my parenting skills or my weight or my exuberant personality, I consider the source.  Do I really care what this person thinks of me?  Probably 98% of the time, I don’t.

I think about all the fun I’m having and wish they could experience the great freedom not conforming brings.

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