Friday, January 31, 2014

Giving You Crap

Asalamu Alaykom and Jummah Mabrook,

You ever feel like people are giving you crap?  Of course you do!

Sorry to put it so plainly but there aren't too many polite ways say it nicely.  When you are getting dumped on, it feels awful.  I've been talking lately to a like-minded sister and we've been trying to figure out how to navigate the messes other people leave for us.

At first, I told her that there must be something wrong with us.  Obviously, we are simply viewing the situation incorrectly.  If there is enough positive thinking, I reasoned, then we would see goodness eventually.

Then, as if on cue, I had three people abso-freaking-lutely crappity-crap on me very publicly.  Everything happens in threes, doesn't it?  Noooo mistaking those moments.  Their actions were uncalled for behavior.  I thought back on my previous assumption of the problems only being my perceptions.

Back to square one.  So, the truth is that something people are giving you crap.  I thought about what my role is after that happens.  After all, I'm not here in this life to simply take other people's crap.  Yet, I don't want to throw it back at them for then the whole world becomes a crappy place to live.

While I was turning over these interpersonal relationships over in my head, I kept living my life.  I stayed open to the answer.  It literally knocked on my door.

When I opened the door, it was my husband and two friends.  He was laughing.  He had Al-Kabeer and Al-Shwier;  "The Big" and "The Little".  These are the two goats from the roof.  They had come down the steps for a visit.  El-Kid was delighted.  Though he's asked me for a dog like his Christian friends, I've reasoned that he has goats (and we get to eat them later).

I was enjoying the moment until I realized that, in their excitement, the steps were littered with droppings.  Yep, I'd been getting shit all week at work and now I was getting it at home too.  My first reaction was, "Oh, shit,"  which you can understand.  I thought how messy our marble steps were going to be after a parade of feet came through.  No, I would have to clean up after the goats.  Obviously, I was not happy to drop what I was doing to deal with someone else's problem.  I was angry.

When I thought of what I needed to find as a pooper scooper, I started to remember something.  I had actually wanted some goat poop.  Why had I forgotten that?  Ya, I had researched it as fertilizer.  It was recommended for its high nutrients and lack of smell.  At the time I found that info, I had tried to envision myself on the roof, walking amid straw, trying to gather it up.  I couldn't imagine it so I had put off that idea.

Now, here I was getting a virtual delivery of the stuff.  I laughed.  It was a fertilizer delivery service that I had scoffed at.  Why hadn't I seen that?

I grabbed a plastic cup still in the garbage along with a discarded chip bag.  I went up and down, cleaning those two flights of stairs and filled the cup half way.  My husband appreciated the cleaning although I'm not sure if he grasped the reason for the stuff entering into our apartment.

I went into the salon and took my fledgling tree.  This is the only plant left.  I then turned the pot upside down.  Those roots sure were crowded!  I decided to re-pot it into the big pottery bowl.  A layer of dirt I had (from one of my previous plant victims) went in first.  Then I put in the free fertilizer.  Next, went in the plant and another layer of dirt.  I packed it down and watered it.

That was a week ago.  It might be my imagination, but I think that the leaves look greener now.  Could that really have been what the plant needed?

God gives us analogies all the time.  If we can't learn the lesson the first time, then we are given many, many, oh-so-many retries at getting it right.  I think I get this one now.

People will give you shit.  It is what it is.  Don't candy-coat shit.  Don't blame yourself.  Their inability to keep their crap inside is a part of their nature---like an animal who can't control their sphincter.  Spending time figuring out why they did it is a time suck.  Trying to get them to see how they erred is as sensible as me talking to the goats.  Flinging back their upset to them with harmful words or actions would make as much sense as giving the goat droppings back to Al-Kabeer.

Keep yourself clean.  Getting angry or getting even doesn't help.  Go about your life and see how you can use what you've been given.  It's all from God.

 If you are connected with The Creator, and you acknowledge that everything emanates from Him, then you can still benefit from whatever is given to you.  Sure, the person might not have a good connection to God, or a good connection to you, but that doesn't stop YOUR connection to God.  Having God as your most important relationship means that you trust what the world is giving you.  Trust God; don't place your trust in the people around you as you never know when animal instincts will come out.

This is true for all of us.  We all have an impulsive side to us which is not healthy.  To be a believer means that we submit to a way of life which is clean and pure.  When we let our lower selves rule, we risk dumping on someone.  Do not dump onto others as you would wish them not to dump on you.

The world is messy.  Relationships are messy.  Staying clean is optimum.  When you are given shit, use it to grow.



Khaki said...

Assalamu alaykum Yosra!

Love 'n light to you, always.

zain said...

Assalamualaikum sis,
I'm glad I'm not the only one.
I love this post, I have been feeling all these things lately....complaining and feeling hurt definitely does not take away what has happened. Like you say, It is an opportunity for us to grow and is part of a bigger plan...May Allah help us see his plan for us.