Monday, January 18, 2010

Manners 101

I grew up with the adage "if you don't have something nice to say, don't say anything at all". I’m not sure if I should thank Thumper and Bambi or my parents for that little gem but I've used these words of wisdom my whole life. They have been a positive influence in my day to day happenings because I hate hurting other people’s feelings. However, it seems that manners have gone by the way side these days. Are they no longer taught? Have we all forgotten what we were taught when we were young?

When I was younger, I thought most people had manners and it was the minority that did not. I still believe that most people say "Please", "Thank you", "Have a Nice Day" and "Excuse me". But there is more to having manners than that. How often do you see gentlemen holding the door for ladies or helping them out of the car? Do you see people in crowded buses or trains giving up their coveted seats to the elderly or the mother carrying a baby or the guy in the cast? When someone trips and falls, is there someone coming over to help them up instead of standing back and laughing? As I think about this, it’s been awhile since I’ve witnessed any of these acts of kindness and good manners. How about you?

What brought this up? Well, it started last week when I was asked if it bothered me that I was getting older and loosing my hair. It was such a strange beginning to a conversation that I was taken by surprise. I answered politely no, and said that there were reasons behind the hair loss and I was hoping to have it return very soon. Unfortunately age happens to all of us and there is no stopping that or turning it around. Plastic surgery is an option for some, but not for me.

Then today, some pictures were seen of me, taken 10 years ago as engagement pictures. I heard "oh, you're so different now. You looked so skinny and happy then". Wow. How did these two people think that was going to sound when they said what they said? Did they think I had lost my eye sight and was unaware that I had lost a lot of hair volume and gained some weight? Was I really that miserable that it needed to be brought to my attention because obviously I must be in some kind of denial? I guess what may be at the root of this is that it bothers me that these two people felt these issues needed to be brought to my attention at all.

I’m pretty sure I’m going to be over this quickly, but I feel I have to say PEOPLE, THINK BEFORE YOU SPEAK! Now go out there and make it a better day. I’ll be able to laugh about this later, I’m sure.

1 comment:

Elise Halladay said...

I can't believe people. What those individuals said to you is truly appalling. I can't believe anyone would think that is o.k. to say to someone. They don't know YOU, they don't know your life or what you are going through. I am so sorry that people say hurtful things. When I saw you last week I thought you looked gorgeous and happy despite the hardships. And I look up to you for that. You are a strong, AMAZING person. I have always loved you and looked up to you. Stay strong!