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random observations, thoughts on life, humorous stories....from the studio while I paint.
Rating: 2 votes, 5.00 average.

"Want the Rest?"

Posted 10/04/2010 at 01:28 AM by superkat
Updated 10/04/2010 at 05:12 AM by superkat

I had an epiphany today. It started out badly, as I spent the twelve hours prior to 8am under observation at RGH for PVC's (premature ventricular contractions). With an artificial aortic valve, it's 50/50 on whether the episode turns into a heart attack or not. Luckily, no, honestly, I did a lot of praying, with some meds and fluids, they were able to bring my blood pressure down with a follow up on Thursday with my cardiologist. But that wasn't the ephiphany cultivator. I drove myself to the hospital because there wasn't anyone else around to do so. My health, and possibly my life, depended on no one else but me. And while my doctor's stood in the hallway outside the room and pointed at me, frowning and shaking their heads, I had some time to think. What else are you going to do? Had it not been for my cell phone I hid under my pillow and some decent text messages with a dear friend too many miles away to help, I truly would have been completely alone with myself....and the blood pressure cuff. Prompted by the friend's insistence that I have some tea, I asked the nurse for a cup....and a turkey sandwich. I was starving.

When I had devoured the sandwich, there were a few small bits of bread still on the plastic wrapper it came in...and it brought on a memory. It was when my daughter was little (and that was a while ago) and I was trying to teach her the value of sharing. It wasn't an easy task, especially if it was something she didn't want to part with. Like a milkshake, or a cookie, or....quite frankly, a turkey sandwich or broccoli. (She was, and still is, a special girl). She would gobble up whatever she had so quickly, I could barely get the words in. "Remember to share." And by that time, all that was left was a few good sized crumbs, at best. And she would sheepishly look at me, knowing she had forgotten, and hand me the napkin, or plate and say, "want the rest?" And I would give her this incredulous look and remind her that if she cared about the company she kept in the future, she would learn the value of giving first. It taught her to be the woman she is today, charitable, forgiving, loving, caring and generous. As she continued to grow, sometimes she would remember, sometimes she wouldn't...and the whole scenario of the crumbs and "want the rest?" became an inside joke for us...even tonight, as we shared PBR's, 1.00 burgers and a couple games of pool at LUX, she left a tiny bite of her burger on the napkin, nodded towards it and said "want the rest?" and gave me a wink. It made me laugh....and while we shot an embarrassing game...i started processing thought in regards to this....and THAT, inspired the epiphany.

In reality, "leftovers" are rarely looked upon as favorable in regards to food....or more importantly, relationships. I would never invite a friend to dinner, sit down, eat in front of them and then give them my plate after I had finished taking what I wanted and say, "want the rest?" I wouldn't have any friends....or if I did, I wouldn't keep them very long. As it relates to relationships should be pretty clear. Personally, I'm a "giver". I was raised in a family where that was the norm. My parents, not wealthy, but comfortable, would give freely of their money, time and compassion without blinking an eye. They impressed upon my brothers and then me, the extreme importance of sharing, not only material things, but things of a more lasting nature. They taught us that in order to be truly handsome, or beautiful, it had to start inside. They also taught us, my brothers probably better than me, that there is a cut off point, that you must learn to recognize, before you give so much that there is nothing left for yourself. I remember watching the Jerry Lewis Telethon for MD and the phrase, "give 'til it hurts." That was my family. That is me.

Today, however. It hurt a lot. The stress of giving so much to others with very little in return finally got to me....and my heart. The "want the rest" may be a joke between my daughter and I, but it is not a laughing matter when it comes to relationships. I have settled all my life for those who spend time with me to fall into the "want the rest" category. Just once...I want the whole cookie. If I need to fight to keep a relationship where the party's time is so divided that everything fails or that their attitude changes for the worse, then I am wasting my time. And it made me realize that I only have one "whole cookie" friend.

Which is one of the main reasons I drove myself to the hospital. My daughter and I haven't spoken in a couple of days because of a breaking point we both reached simultaneously. I had saved the crumbs for the only 100%, positively, absolutely, one in a million friend I have....my daughter. I gave so much of myself away, (what is the biblical expression, "don't throw your pearls to swine...") that it was Mandy who was doing exactly what I taught her to, feeding me first. And under normal circumstances, friends feed each other. Without the balance, it will not last. The key to success is recognition.

And I struggled with this revelation. It seemed to be, in itself, contradictory to everything I had been taught...but at the same time, it made perfect sense that I had finally come to that point that my parents tried to teach me to recognize. Actually, the more I thought about it, the more I realized that they must have taught me well...because here I am, 47...and just now hitting the point of "giving too much".

I have never, in all my life, devoured a shared plate with a friend and left a shameful crumb for them. I have never said, "want the rest"? when I was finished taking what I wanted. I have never offered leftovers to those whose relationships I value. There is no question that if I take it upon myself to be a friend, it will be the kind that my upbringing taught me to be. However, it has become clear, that there are people out there that will take advantage of that. Once I remove my rose color glasses, things become a little more what they really are.

So tonight, I gathered what was left of me...the crumbs from the road that I have traveled, and on the walk home from LUX with Mandy...I started to cry. This beautiful woman who I raised to be everything that my parents taught me to be...who accepts me for who I am unconditionally...KEY WORD...unconditionally, walking beside me...completely appreciative of my time, but tired of picking up the pieces...so lovely...so honest..and I stopped and I hugged her so tight I think I realigned her back. I looked at her and said, "want the rest?" She knew what I meant. There's not much left of me. Silly women. Standing in front of the German House and crying. And she said, "I'll take the leftovers, Momma...because you did the right thing. You shared."

And now, a new plate has been set before me. I marvel at the presentation. I anxiously await each tasty morsel....

....and I pass the plate to my friends....

It took 47 years to run out of "food"...I think I'm in good shape for the next 20.

Peace,
Kat
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Comments

  1. Old Comment
    Mmckibben's Avatar
    NEW AVITAR!
    Posted 10/04/2010 at 08:09 AM by Mmckibben Mmckibben is offline
  2. Old Comment
    Posted 10/07/2010 at 11:24 PM by Mmckibben Mmckibben is offline
  3. Old Comment
    superkat's Avatar
    holy cow. that's intense.
    Posted 10/18/2010 at 09:59 PM by superkat superkat is offline
  4. Old Comment
    Mmckibben's Avatar
    It's a forty minute drive away just to the base of the mountains!
    Posted 10/18/2010 at 11:20 PM by Mmckibben Mmckibben is offline
  5. Old Comment
    superkat's Avatar
    seriously? then that fire is ENORMOUS. good grief. that would scare the livin' bejeesus outta me.
    Posted 10/20/2010 at 11:12 PM by superkat superkat is offline
  6. Old Comment
    Mmckibben's Avatar
    that's why it's called the four mile cannon fire.
    Posted 10/20/2010 at 11:13 PM by Mmckibben Mmckibben is offline
  7. Old Comment
    Mmckibben's Avatar
    there were 4 other smaller ones.
    Posted 10/20/2010 at 11:14 PM by Mmckibben Mmckibben is offline
 

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