I'm Still Standing*
It was an innocent enough question, and since it came in a nonthreatening environment (work) during the course of routine duties (work), I just as innocently answered it.
Too late did I realize that it was the Beast that had asked the question. The whole thing was just another ploy to fling wide the gates of my tortured psyche. And fling they did. The Beast lost no time dredging up every inadequacy, regret, failure and shortcoming I'd ever experienced, sharpening them to razor-sharp points and hurling them at my emotional core. I fought back, bolstering my shields with the advice given me by trula, susan, parched earth opals, chosen fast, or, lucky and other commenters.
I'm sorry, guys. He went straight through those shields like tissue paper.
The struggle went on for hours, and was made worse by the fact that every soccer mom and office dad in Greensboro chose that day to come wandering into the store looking for the latest whatnots and gewgaws to drop money on. Kinda hard to battle the Beast when you've got to select a smile, put it on, and make the customer feel that they're the most important person in the world at that moment. At least it is for me because I tend to wear my emotions on my sleeve.
Lunchtime was a blur as I spent most of it trying to put down the Beast's latest incursion. He'd used the intervals of my having to deal with customers to good advantage; now he was bringing up regrets from my old high school days. The girls I made cry through my immaturity. The grades I would've gotten had I not been too busy trying to be popular. The friends I lost, and the enemies I gained. The loves I lost and the fights I lost worse. The time I wasted. The things I said and did that are by now too late to take back and make amends for.
About midafternoon, I was wavering under the onslaught and thinking that a tall, frosty glass of Drano would just about hit the spot when I heard it.
Coming over the store speakers.
The first strains of Elton John's "I'm Still Standing"!
God, I needed that! I latched on tight, and sang along with the track, something I typically don't do because I can't carry a tune in a bucket, but I didn't care. I needed something to lash the Beast with, and that fit the bill nicely. Fotunately, no one needed to page anyone right then.
It took until about halfway through the song, but the Beast finally fled howling back into his corner. It was over, for the nonce, and I had won. Just.
I've really got to find time to see a good shrink...
*With apologies to Sir Elton.
I was mentioned... that was me right? I feel so loved! :)
Take all those things you've done, those bad things, sad things, and pay back God by being nice to your customers. Think about it. You might not be able to go back to those people, but you can "make it right" by doing good to those around you in the here and now.
Man, I've got to catch up... what's the job? *goes back to read*
Before I read your post I was looking up motivational quotes for another purpose. I will leave you with this one I found.
"Nothing is predestined: The obstacles of your past can become the gateways that lead to new beginnings."