Sunday, June 2, 2019

Let People Do What They Wanna Do So You See What They'd Rather Do

I recently took this photo of Willa. She's laying in the sun that's pouring through our windows. Yawning. About to take one of her many daily naps. Before posting, I thought, "If I were to add an eye roll to this yawn, it would completely represent how I feel about..."

People not following through.

But more so, those who precede not following through with this single sentence...

"I owe you (big time)…"

Back in my very early 30's, I was a lead teacher for a preschool classroom. I adored my students. They loved coming to preschool. I had earned the respect and trust of their parents.

Sadly, the woman who owned the preschool at the time had a very dark and shady past. A few months after being hired, little by little, this all surfaced.

Long story short, less than a year after I was hired, the preschool spiraled downward rather quickly. It was inevitable that the doors would be closing. Throughout this time, several parents begged me to continue services in my home. It was late Spring. Their children would be enrolled in kindergarten that Fall.

I set up my home and provided daycare/preschool services for 3 of those kids.

At the same time, I was also beginning my work at home career. That was no easy feat because I had to go through training and proving myself.

My hours for childcare/preschool were 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. My hours for my other job was 5 p.m. until about 2 in the morning.

Amid all of that, I was in a relationship with someone who felt it was my duty to take care of all housework and the cooking. Often times, when I unplugged around 2-ish in the morning, I would complete the housework that didn't make too much noise.

For many months, I kept that schedule. On the weekends, I worked 12+ hour days at my work at home job, tended to housework, cooked, and tackled outside work because...


I had a close relationship with all of the parents and the kids and I loved spending time with all of them.


As the months went on, my kind and generous nature began to kick me in the ass.

At first, it was tiny infractions like dropping off their child early or picking them up an hour or so late.

I would get a call at the last minute that sounded something like...

"I have to be to work early, can I drop off (child's name) a half hour early?"


"I have to work late and it's mandatory, do you mind feeding (child's name) dinner? I'll be there as soon as I can."

Okay. Fine. Not a problem.

It didn't take too long for things to progress.

"I have to be in an hour early all this week. Can I drop off (child's name) an hour early? I'll make it up to you."


"I have to work late all this week and run errands after. Can (child's name) stay for dinner? I'll bring their pajamas so they'll be all set when I pick them up. I owe you big time."

It went on and on and on. Eventually, the parents were relying on me to take care of their kids well after dark. And, it wasn't because they were working late.

I had parents dropping off their kids on the weekends too.

I lost count how many times I heard...

"I owe you big time."

"I'll pay you extra."

"I'll be here when you need some favors cashed in."

Blah. Blah. Blah.

I never saw the extra money.

Those "I owe you big time" never surfaced.

About a month before the Fall school season began, I had to make a business trip to Texas for almost a week. The reason for the trip was a huge accomplishment for myself. I had busted ass to get that position and the generous raise and benefits that came along with it.

When I informed the parents of my achievement, they weren't too excited because my trip would inconvenience them.

I'm not going to lie. I was completely crushed. 

When I arrived back from my business trip and was fully employed with the media company, they were even less thrilled.


Because I was no longer available to accommodate their extended hours. And, mind you, again, I never received a penny extra (despite promises) or was on the receiving end of those dozens of "I owe you big time."

When their kids started school, a couple of the parents asked if I would be available for school vacations or snow days or evenings or weekends.

Could I have swung it?


Did I make myself available?


At that time, I told myself that I would not put myself in that same situation again.

Have I?


It's in my nature to give people the benefit of the doubt. I wear my heart on my sleeve. If someone is in need, I do what I can. Always there to help out. Forgive. Forget. Be the better person.

Lisa too. We are 2 peas in a pod.

You would think that at our age we would have learned by now.

But, the process of learning continues until the day you take your last breath.

Over the years, we've lived and learned. We've become wiser. Stronger.

The moments when we fall for the same song and dance have become few and far between.

However, when we do it tugs at our heartstrings and emotions because at this point in our life, we are supposed to have everything almost fine tuned.

The operative word is almost.

Living and learning and the growing pains of life never ends.

Although our tribe has gotten much smaller and we are very careful about who we trust and let in and do stuff for...

Occasionally, we mess up.

We are human.

Just like you and you and you.

When we get to this fork in the road, it's difficult.

That's where we are at.

As the saying goes...

"Let people do what they wanna do so you see what they'd rather do."

That will answer all the questions you have.

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