Yesterday I encountered two clerks at the public library who treated me as though helping me taxed them unnecessarily. I tried talking with each in a reasonable way. Neither the subject nor “right or wrong” matter; both continuously turned their backs on me while talking, used unpleasant tones despite my trying increasingly to be pleasant to secure their help, and neither helped me (which, again, is neither here nor there; the manner in which they treated me matters).
As I trudged back towards my car, which at our library is “a far piece”, I could not help but wonder how I could influence people to be more pleasant. I find myself frustrated with the enormous number of negative people in the world. It’s tempting to resort to behavior in kind.
Instead, I fill my lungs with air and let out a heavy sigh. I e-mailed the library to try to resolve my problem without having to again deal with those women. I try to think about what kind of day each must have been having to prompt them to treat me that way. I found myself being overly nice with the next counter-person with whom I dealt, hoping for some type of ripple effect. Then I tried to let it go.
Another day in my year without complaining — halfway through the tenth month of the second year. I’m beginning to wonder if “not complaining” should be taught in grade school. It’s challenging going this road alone, and I’m not always as successful as I want to be.
Ah, but: it’s a new day. Life continues.