I live in a tiny town with a post office the size of a porta-potty (I exaggerate, but still…). We inherited a transplant in the post office from the great big post office a town away. And she was mean! I always brought my dog to the post office with me as it’s a nice walk from home. With a pointed finger jabbing the air, “No dogs allowed!” And away I would go, unable to do my post office business. Man, really???
I’d learned to avoid the post office as much as possible, for I prefer smiles and small talk. But I had to mail this package. It had sat in my car for 2 weeks.
Deep breath. I entered the post office. She was sitting there…I could feel her trying to find something to scold me for. I needed a label. “Right there, no there! To the right. Not that! Right THERE.” I couldn’t figure out which label to grab, and I started laughing. Silly me! I think I said something self-deprecating and went up to the counter. She had a lovely sparkly ring, and I am often distracted by sparkly objects. I complimented her ring, and she flashed a brief smile. She complimented my ring, too, which had just been shined so it looked extra sparkly. I felt a small crack in the door of conversation and I blew the door wide open. Next thing I know, she’s sharing with me how much excruciating pain she’s in because she has carpal tunnel and a slipped disk in her back. She can barely walk without a cane! I told her that I had carpal tunnel and had much success with physical therapy. This chit chatting continued for another minute or two, and then she looked at me. Her eyes were glistening; not crying but on the verge. She said, “I thank God that you came in today.”
Which leaves me with these thoughts:
When a person appears evil or mean or bitter, what might be going on in their life that makes them so unhappy?
When a person appears evil or mean or bitter, it’s not about you. It’s about them!
What possibilities are there when we show an ounce of kindness to somebody who doesn’t have it in themself to do the same?
I look forward to going to the post office now (without the dog, of course).