In the past, I have made various resolutions for each New Year, including to lose weight, exercise more, eat more healthy foods, etc. I know that most if not all of you have ridden that same train, only to find that it never actually arrived at the station. The disappointment and discouragement is real, and sometimes it ended up depressing me. Dr. Jim Denison had an excellent article today about the history of resolutions (it was based on false gods), and advice about keeping them.
In spite of this article, I am still not making a resolution this year. For the past several years, instead of an action, I have been choosing a word to focus on for the year. Last year was thankfulness. This year, my new word will be kindness. Don’t you think that all of us could use a little more kindness in our lives? And I base it on Jesus’s commandment to love others. Just be kind, even when people are not kind to you. Just be kind! Yesterday, I had the occasion to put my new word into practice before the New Year even started. Honestly, shouldn’t I be practicing it every day? But I must confess that some people push my buttons and make me want to just tell them exactly what I think of them and/or their policies. Yesterday was just such a day because I was at a doctor’s office. Not my regular doctor because I am still in Maryland visiting family, and add to that the stress that we had a death in the family late Sunday afternoon. I was suffering from all of the symptoms of a sinus infection headed for my lungs, and since I have been taking care of the two and four-year olds, I waited until their nap time to go to the local urgent care center. The girl at the desk acted like she was doing me a favor checking me in. Seriously?!? Nevertheless, I maintained my calm and smiling demeanor, did as she asked and continued to be polite. Then, I met the nurse who was okay, just not very friendly. I was asked to do a peek flow test, almost impossible if one is in the middle of an asthma attack as I was. Still, I followed her directions and managed to continue to be kind to her. Then, the big test arrived in the form of the P.A. who could not believe all that I was allergic to and all of my health conditions and said so loudly from her desk in the hallway where anyone could hear. Talk about HIPPA violations! She then diagnosed me and asked what I usually received for my current symptoms. I told her and then she debated with me about them. At that point, I was ready to tell her just to give me the medications I needed and let me out of there. I had been there for almost two hours, jumping through their never-ending hoops. First, a breathing treatment with another peak flow test. Then, a solumedrol injection. Then, more ranting from her about my meds (from the centralized desk in the hallway, again) and finally dismissed. I maintained my cool and told her “Happy New Year” in spite of the fact that she showed no such politeness to me. When I say she dismissed me, that is exactly what she did; she handed me my papers and said nothing. Nothing! I could not get out of there fast enough so that I could vent to my husband about the lack of professionalism in that office. But…big but here…I did not treat her the way she was treating me; I treated her the way I would have liked to be treated. So, my word for the year is “kindness.” Do you have a resolution or a word for the year?