Saturday, March 27, 2010

Hate is such an ugly thing

I wrote of an ex-employee that I had bumped into last January in a local store that didn't seem to like me much and how it affected me.

I ran into her and her husband yesterday. This time, Judy was with me. I stepped into a waiting room where they were standing. I said Hi to her husband and she was standing with her back to me. I sat down while I waited for the receptionist and watched as she leaned over and whispered into the ear of her husband. He looked over at me and then the two of them walked outside and waited there. I was shocked.

I turned to Judy and asked her if she remembered my tale of the cashier who didn't seem to like me. She did. I said,that is her. Judy watched and saw just what I did. That this woman seemed to hate being in the same room with me and felt better standing out in the cold than to have that happen. I think Judy got a bit of a kick out of her disdain for me. "I just don't understand why she hates me so.", I said to her. "It's her problem, not yours", Judy returned.

We finished up our business and left. They realized we were leaving and started back to the door. I held it for them and said, "Hi guys!". She mumbled something and he said nothing as they walked in.

As we walked to the car, Judy said, "Why did you do that. She obviously does not like you.". "Because I am who I am.", I returned, "I can't hate her because she doesn't like me.".

I mused all the way back to the diner on why this woman hated me so deeply. I don't hate anyone. And I know that I have this deep seeded desire to have everyone like me. You can analyze that all you want, it is just there. The man who I care for the least, who did great harm to my family and this community, I don't hate. I actually feel sorry for him in a way.

As we drove, Judy mentioned that we should ask Toni, one of our waitresses who has a steel trap mind if she remembered her so upon arrival at Jake's, we shared with Toni of our recent encounter.

"I know who it is." Toni said, "She worked for us back when I first started. You fired her.". "Why did I fire her?", I asked. "Because she was mean. She was mean to her fellow employees and to our customers when your back was turned. You fired her because she is what you saw today.". As she shared her memories of events that had happened so long ago, I began to remember them myself. I even recall warning her and how she didn't show this attitude to me but I knew I needed to listen to my employees and the customers who did complain. I do remember her anger when I did let her go.

But, that was fifteen years ago. They say time heals but it most definitely hasn't with her. And, if her angry attitude was anything back then close to the one that I witnessed, I definitely made the right decision so many years back.

I just feel so sad for her. Carrying that kind of anger around in your heart can only darken your heart even more. And I just cannot hope that all will like me, it just doesn't work that way.


Anonymous said...

i think your approach is lovely, very beautiful lesson for everyone
thank you

Jeanie's Jars said...

I think you handled it wonderful. She is the one that suffers and not you. I was always told to hand the ball back gently when it was thrown at me in anger.