Losing Sight Helped Me Find Balance Amidst Extremes
I’d long forgotten what we were arguing about yet remembering the word he flung at me stung.
Things got heated between us early one morning as my brother was driving me to work in my vehicle. Since driving had become difficult because I was losing my eyesight, I had voluntarily given it up.
As you might imagine turning over the car keys was not an easy thing to do. In Trading Car Keys For A White Cane, I talk about what it was like having to do so. Anyway, being relegated to passenger status, then ending up in a screaming match, in your own vehicle? Well, that’s just all kinds of wrong. I can laugh about it now but in the heat of the moment, I was beyond furious. So angry in fact, while the tears stung my eyes I wouldn’t cry and I didn’t say another word.
‘JUDGMENTAL,’ he said. Me, judgmental? Seething with anger and the need for a private meltdown, I lunged out of the Jeep and rushed into my office building. A lobby, elevator bank, and 11 floors later I arrived at my destination. It wasn’t until I was safely in the ladies’ room where I allowed myself the luxury of crying. Of all the words in the world, why would he call me judgmental? More importantly, why was I so upset about it?
If it Looks, Swims or Quacks Like a Duck
If you’re at all familiar with the Myers Briggs Type Indicator you are aware of the 16 different personality types. I’m an INTJ short for Intuitive, Introverted, Thinking, and Judging. Yup, there it is, that word ‘judging.’ At the risk of being totally transparent, I’ve always known this was a personal character trait or flaw perhaps? Being in my head is an awfully lonely place to be because I tend to operate on many ridiculous assumptions. For example:
- Chaos does not compute. Structure is my friend and I wrongly assume that others will abide by my standards.
- Nonsensical madness like the ‘poke’ feature on Facebook. Can someone please explain what this is for? Or chain letters or worse yet chain messages. My assumptions in these cases are baffling because. Why?
- Being on time is being 30 minutes early. ‘Nuff said.
- Rules that make sense (refer to the second bullet) are designed to keep us safe and efficient. Rules that don’t make sense need restructuring (refer to the first bullet). So why in the name of heaven would anyone blatantly disregard the 20 items or less in the express lane? The assumption here? Yup, you guessed it― criminal.
So I may be a teensy weensy judgy but in my defense, I:
- Create order in chaos
- Whatever I do, I do it to the very best of my ability
- Special projects allow me to joyfully tap into my workaholic persona
- I’m really good at creating a plan, a backup plan, and a contingency plan for the backup plan
The Toilet Paper Roll Test
Which do you prefer over or u
Through the years I’ve been told I’m intense, quirky, obsessive-compulsive, and opinionated. Just a mere few years ago for any given situation, in my mind, it was either black or white. There was never an in-between or gray area. And balance? Well, balance never really fit into the equation because some of my views were distorted.
To some degree, when I began losing sight I started seeing things more clearly. Learning that blindness isn’t black and white helped me to understand that many of life’s circumstances share a similar philosophy.
Today, I’m still quirky, intense, obsessive-compulsive, and judgy, it’s who I am, however, I’m also more open-minded. Blogging and social media have enabled me to meet so many people who have such compelling stories it’s opened my eyes.
Today, I’m more mindful than ever that while we are biologically the same, each of us is unique. Even though we may share similar situations how we react to them is personal and requires patience and understanding.
Today, I purposefully seek balance and am getting better at living in the moment. So how’d I do in the toilet paper roll test? Growing up in a strictly ‘under’ household, when I would happen upon a roll that was ‘over’ I was done. I mean who does this? And why?
It wasn’t until one of my sons came to live with me for a minute that I was put to the test. Apparently, he rebelled against his upbringing and became an ‘over’ person. For a while we’d battle with the toilet paper roll, then one day I just gave up. And you know what? Nothing happened. There wasn’t a meteor strike, an attack of the body snatchers or zombie apocalypse and the best thing? The toilet paper still worked!
Today, I can proudly say I’m an ‘over’ person and proud of it! Releasing, released me and is allowing me to experience a freedom like none other.
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The graphic is a simple black and white EKG with the outline of a ballerina in the center of the jagged lines.