…the behinder I get.
That was one of my Mom’s favorite sayings as I was growing up in my little mountain town, and the longer I live, the more accurate that statement becomes. I have had several reminders of that recently, ranging from annoying to real pain in the hindquarters, noting earth shattering or life threatening, but definitely annoying. The truth is that it makes me aggravated with myself when rushing something causes a mistake or omission that requires me to start over again, and I am the only person in my life whose aggravations seems to be free of consequences. If a business aggravates me, I carry my custom to their competitors. If another driver annoys me, I have faith that the universe will retaliate on my behalf to maintain its equilibrium. If it is a family member, there is penance, or if the aggravations is deliberate, even punishment. Me? What am I going to do, take away my TV privileges until I complete the project? I guess in a manner of speaking I do just that, but it really just adds to the aggravations load.
Self forgiveness is a skill I am still working to acquire, and it is one of the more difficult. If someone in my service makes a mistake, they have an opportunity to do penance and be forgiven, and in the penance and external forgiveness get permission to forgive themself. If I make a mistake that causes another pain, I can take action to try to redress the issue, heal the injury, and prevent the event’s recurrence. In these acts I suppose I am doing penance, can seek the forgiveness of whomever I wronged, and I am able to forgive myself. I have written in other posts about the slave’s “Hampster-Wheel-O-Doom,” a psychological phenomena wherein a submissive convinces themself that they are not worthy of serving, and ways to break that cycle. The question on my mind is, “How do those of us who are the leaders of the families and heads of households break the cycle?” So far, strength of will has sufficed for me, but if I’ve learned anything in the last half century its that while my capacity to screw up is for all practical purposes infinite, my will power and stamina are anything but.
I’ll continue learning and growing, and who knows, maybe one day I’ll learn to forgive myself, but I hope that it never gets easy. If it is too easy, I’m afraid the motivation to keep learning and improving will die away too, and that would be the real tragedy. Maybe self forgiveness is supposed to be hard for that very reason. I don’t know, but I do know I’ll keep looking for the answers, and until I have them will move along doing the best I can with my head held high, and trust my family to catch me when I slip.
What else can a Master do?