To be honest, I really started enjoying math when letters were introduced to the equation. You should have seen my amusement when we were introduced to Algebra and asked to find x. I enjoyed the complexity of working out the equations, finding x, y and other letters that the teachers felt we needed to find. It got more difficult as we progressed of course, but that never made me like it any less. If anything, my consolation was that I was assured that I was not going to get a 0 because the teachers marked the steps as opposed to the answer only. You know, that processes of breaking down the steps to the solution of what the value of x and y (among others) is. Anyone feel me?
Anyhow, it’s been a rather interesting month already. I am learning so much about myself this year. Could it be the age? Ha! Let’s not go there. One thing I figured out about myself a while back and which I needed to reevaluate is that I am a very defensive (or self-justifying) person. I’m sure I have mentioned it here before, back when I was very actively blogging. Someone once called me out on it and it was a big shocker for me. When they did I probably got pissed off, perhaps because during the dispute I was wondering, “But what did I do that was wrong?” I have ammunition, because I wasn’t the one on the wrong and I had my defenses ready on why I was not. Self-righteous right? Pretty much.
It didn’t occur to me then that’s the way I was, because mostly I would try my very best not to be on the wrong. And so when I am caught on the wrong side of things, I try to get off that bandwagon as fast as I can, because I never thought of myself as part of the problem. And if I can just prove why I am not a part of the problem, then I am good. But not really, because then I would make the other person seem like they’re villain in this dispute, while I come off as the saint, which I evidently am not.
This realization affected me, although I wasn’t able to just shake it off right away or figure out how to apply it in the way I handled situations, it was a part of who I was. I was used to dealing with things that way. The good thing though, was that I was aware and so when I was about to ask, “But what did I do that was wrong?” I would change my approach and try to figure out what the overall problem was and how we can try and work around it. I tried my best not to lift myself off the situation, but instead because I am a part of the problem, also be a part of the solution.
Fast forward to today when I am mature enough to understand what that actually meant. It could have been the fear of being on the wrong, because in front of your seniors/elders you want to come off as a goody-two-shoes and perhaps avoid punishment or reprimand. And so when you’re found on the wrong, you want to prove to them that you didn’t do wrong, even in situations where you did wrong. A case of, “I didn’t eat the sugar when you have sugar particles all over your face.”
And over time it occurred to me that wherever you are and a problem occurs, then you’re a part of the problem. You might not have been the one who’s done it or who has caused it per se, but the fact that you’re in that environment, that means that you’re a part of it. You can’t just lift yourself off from the equation, you have to be a part of the process in finding the solution. Assuming that the solution is the x or the y in that equation, if you remove a number before it’s time to remove it, the equation is incomplete and therefore the solution will be insufficient. But if the process includes you being lifted off for the solution to be found, then that’s okay.
This has helped me deal with issues both at work and at home, because when I am not so fast to remove myself from the equation, I am patient enough to evaluate the problem, what caused it, what part I played in making it happen and how we can solve the problem. And because I wouldn’t want it to happen again, figure out what not to do or what to do next time to ensure that it doesn’t happen, at least not that way. I still struggle to do so, and so it’s one situation at at a time and constant reminder to self.
Everyday there’s an opportunity to learn, about yourself, about your family & friends, about your environment; basically everything within and around you needed for your existence and your role in it all. And the best we can do it, is have an open mind at all times and be willing to learn and sometimes even unlearn and then learn some more. This can only happen when you’re at the center of it looking around the different aspects of your life that affect you (or vice versa) in one way or another.
Today’s post reminded me of the day that we had a blackout and outside was the full moon in all its beauty and glory at the center of it all. A befitting quote to go along with it,
The moon is a loyal companion. It never leaves. It’s always there, watching, steadfast, knowing us in our light and dark moments, changing forever just as we do. Every day it’s a different version of itself. Sometimes weak and wan, sometimes strong and full of light. The moon understands what it means to be human. Uncertain. Alone. Cratered by imperfections. ~ Tahereh Mafi
Have a blessed week ahead.
Signing Off ~~~ *Kawi*