The Road To Seattle – Week 3
We arrived in Portland last Tuesday and jammed in as much exploration as possible from the minute we got here! My aunt and uncle and cousin showed us their favorite spots all over their amazing city. We enjoyed Greek food and cupcakes and rode the streetcar, explored bookstores and walked EVERYWHERE. We have been so busy and have slept so good and so deep each night.
We spent a day on the Oregon Coast before heading out for Seattle which was awesome. We hiked and hiked and got so cold! And had oh so much fun!
Now that we are in Seattle we are doing all the tourist stuff. Exploring parks and the locks and the market and just soaking in all this fun chilly summer time weather. Bradyn’s favorite part is that the rain doesn’t stop us. He thinks it’s amazing that we just put on our hoods and keep walking or playing or doing whatever. At home a little bit of rain means you retreat indoors until it’s over. Here it just means you get wet.
Insights from the road -
People do what works for them. You have to do what works for you.
After my most recent workshop, we took a little detour to hang out with a friends family before the main event in Seattle.
It turned out to be the least fun but most thought provoking segment of our adventure so far.
My intuition had been telling me that this side trip was not a good idea for months. So much so that I never really committed to it and even at the last possible moment was on the fence as to whether we where gonna make the stop. But feelings of “responsibility”, “friendship” and trying to meet someone else’s “expectations” won out.
Lesson 1 – Intuition is a good thing. Doing something just to make someone else happy rarely is. This is a lesson I have learned in the past and keep getting little refreshers on.
There was also a bit of hope that this visit would be different from previous visits and we would all enjoy ourselves.
Lesson 2 – Historical evidence is a good gauge of how things are going to go. When history and your gut are telling you not to do something – LISTEN.
The upside for both of us – We arrived and things were fun. The child of the house is Bradyn’s age and they were both excited about the prospect of playing. The visit was built around the kids so we spent a ton of time going to local parks and getting time in the fresh outdoors, which was awesome!
The downside for B – Bradyn’s playmate had a hard time controlling his temper. When things where good they were great. When things were bad, he would SCREAM things like “YOU’RE ANNOYING ME!” or “YOU’RE SO MEAN” directly in B’s face. He would also scream things like “Get away from me” or “If you don’t then I won’t love you” to the adults in his life. All in all it was some pretty alarming behavior.
The downside for me – My friend was in a constant state of rant for our entire visit. The rants ranged from relationship stuff to family stuff to parenting stuff. In each rant my friend played both the part of the victim and the part of the super hero interchangeably.
You know the rant style – “So and so is such an awful person, they don’t appreciate me and they do this and this annoying thing and they are basically bad people that take and take and hurt me over and over but they need me and I saved the day by….”
A majority of the rants were little monologues that needed no response but the few times there was an open spot at the end of a sentence that seemed to be the appropriate place for me to speak, it was made clearly apparent that my role was to listen and possibly nod. My thoughts and ideas where not wanted or welcomed.
I spent some time walking the line between wanting to show up for my friend and listen as needed and pondering the guidelines of healthy friendship.
Finally we had a tense conversation that will probably be our last where I voiced the thought that friendship involves each side talking and listening equally and maybe a bit of focus on positive subject matter would be awesome. Both ideas were quickly discounted.
B and I packed up and left early with a smile.
Lesson 3 – People do what works for them. On some level the parenting style and the ranting is working for my friend and who am I to say it’s not the way things should be?
All I can really say is that it didn’t work for B and I. We are moving on with our journey in a way that works for us.
What about you? How do you deal with people that you want to remain friends with but making it happen is so much harder than you think it should be?
Till next week.