“Your sacred space is where you can find yourself over and over again.”
― Joseph Campbell
This story starts out with the best of intentions as I suppose many stories do. My partner is the most thoughtful gift-giver. He should rent out his services. It’s incredible the way he pays attention to the smallest of details and arrives at a gift that brings me to tears every single time. This is neither a complaint nor a brag. It just is who he is.
This year I attempted to be just as thoughtful. I searched the internet for an album that he wanted and was hard to find: The River by Bruce Springsteen. I found said album and a few others that I thought he would enjoy, and ordered them for Valentine’s Day.
And yes, we celebrate Valentine’s Day nearly nine years into our relationship. A holiday based on Love is just my thing.
On Saturday, the items were set to arrive but we were away from the house all day. I forgot to check for them when we returned home. When, I woke on Sunday I went hunting. The internet said they were at my house but the items were nowhere to be found. Immediately, I panicked.
Our neighborhood is next to a not so good neighborhood (assumptions are bad news)
I thought for sure the items were stolen and I burst into tears. I was on the warpath to find these items. This was my year to be thoughtful! We filed a police report, we went to local record stores, I filed a report online to get my money back. But, the worst part, is that my day was ruined. I desperately wanted to give him these gifts.I somberly watched the Super Bowl (Beyonce slayed!) and slinked off to bed. I was a grumpy muppet all day.
This morning my mail carrier called having received word I reported the items stolen. He told me to check my backyard, next to a back porch (a decorative porch we never use or look at). There, on the porch, were the records. Mind you, never once in three years of living in this house was a package ever placed in that location. But, nevermind the details.
Wonderful, right? Yes, but I can’t help but think of how reactive I can be when things don’t go the way I planned. As I reflect today, I could work on not letting events derail me so much. I could be more patient and wait to see how things unfold. It is more important to me to be a good partner as opposed to a vengeful monster, which is how I spent my day yesterday. I mean, how thoughtful is a gift if I’m ranting and raving about it?
The records will spin tonight and my sweet partner will not “I told you so” to me, as he often could. I think he knows I spend enough time flogging myself for my emotional reactivity. I definitely don’t need help.
This is when self-compassion is the hardest.
I should of… Why didn’t I… Of course…
Always learning, right?
“Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet.”