What I should be doing and what I am doing = two different things… but just need to write… So yesterday, I do believe was an evening of unexpected responses – a couple responses were ones received and one I “sent”. I had a big discussion with two of my favorite girls last night about the power behind the “sent’ message by text, in their instance. When I receive a text/email sometimes it is difficult to interpret the feelings behind the text/email. I can’t see the face, hear the voice, or see body expressions. It can easily be misinterpreted, and gave them specific examples. I even gave them an example of a personal response on the phone. Mary had called me and she thought I sounded in a bad mood, but in fact, my rushing was so I could just wrap up and get done for the day. When I called her back, she said you sound like you are in a better mood. I said I wasn’t in a bad mood before just juggling about 10 other things. So even though she heard my voice in a response she could not see what I was doing = misinterpreted response.
Yesterday my first unexpected response was from Jim inviting his family out for a night of family fun – no misinterpretation… only pure joy. No cooking… heading for wings in Pittsburgh which also meant happiness for Sam (Toys-R-Us) and Mary (Mall) especially since I got her BFF Melissa to come too.
The second response was one she received. I usually am the devils advocate about text that maybe things were misinterpreted. She always hates that. However, by doing that it opens her mind to the other side. But this time, she was clearly hurt. I completely understood. Often times, she has me read her text to be sure that they should cannot be misinterpreted by the receiver. I read the one sent prior and I believed it to be typed and sent with a pure and honest heart without hidden agenda. The other problem I have learned with me and text is I want an instant response; however, just as every other communication, sometimes the response needs thought, the receiver maybe pre-occupied and not best time to respond, or sometimes there is nothing to be said. Perfect example was text she sent was day prior… response received day later… her response back none. I told her when she did not get a reply the day earlier they may not have received it or may not have been able to respond. Sometimes it is easier to be silent than to keep the text flowing back and forth to add to the fire. I am not often speechless, and she hates when I am, but I didn’t know what to say. Sometimes it hurts when you get an unexpected response, from someone you love, especially when you put your heart out there. We talked about how her initial text the day prior spoke for the testimony of her life, coming from a family that enforces asking forgiveness. I told her I was proud of her for that, and wish I knew a way to fix the unexpected response back. More conversation happened, but that will have to be another blog.
The third response was one I sent. I had received an email, that I sort of expected to receive, but did not want to get. I had read it earlier before our family night, but knew if I responded then it would be out of rush and not thought. I wanted to just say NO to the question… and maybe that would have been wiser. However, once I came home I sat and typed a response with SEVERAL edits. I felt I needed to stand up for my personal needs in the situation. I love to be flexible and help, but have learned over time that can place me in that constant expectation to change. The change can then become morphed into my role. I honestly have never said NO in this situation before. I always go with the flow and adjust and change. This morning, I gingerly opened the email, and no response back. The problem with a slow response back is I don’t know if I will even get one, which means I do not know what the other person thought. I am sure it will “cost” me at some point. I do not have regrets about my response; however, some guilt for not saying yes. I even started it by saying not sure how to respond… and ended with I am sure this is not the response you expected. But, oh the uneasy feeling I have of the silence on the other end.
I think of dear friends – one cousin who received the notice that the lump was positive for cancer who had a double mastectomy… one friend who received the notice the lump was positive but thought treatment would be minimal; however, when the surgery happened it became more extensive and treatment plan changed – unexpected response from doctors… I have another friend who gets her results from her biopsy today… and another friend who gets her results next week… I think back to Samuel’s diagnosing and though in my gut I knew the response – it still hit me like an unexpected response.
I am in the middle of a book about prayer (a blog later) and how I wish I would have prayed over the response before hitting send – I guess that would be the only piece of regret, so now of course I pray for a good response. One of the guidance I always give to friends/ family/patients when waiting for a result is to pray for the best and prepare for the worst. But, in hindsight, that really is hypocritical. When I pray to God, I should just pray for the best and expect nothing less of him. Does that mean it will always work exactly like I prayed? No, but when I prepare for the worst, it may mean that I don’t trust him to give me the best (OUCH!), and I never thought about it that way! Granted, the answer I wanted may not come when I want it (i.e. years of infertility), and may never come, but as I mentioned in my previous blog – it may be because there is a GREATER STORY He is trying to write!
I think my testimony continues in my response to unexpected responses. Do I praise Him through the storms or only when life is smooth sailing? My testimony is seen everyday by my children, and they learn from that. I need to learn to pray intentionally over the small things – including my responses before I hit send or open my mouth – so I don’t sit now with some regret for not doing that with my email. I also need to pray intentionally for the best answer, because my God is capable of things beyond my imagination (and Sam’s – which is one of the best imaginations I have ever witnessed – lol).
Isaiah 55: 9 ” “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts”