Grace for Others: Bilateral Payback

We all have off days; days when we don’t feel stressed, agitated, fearful, irritable…you know the drill. These are days when we aren’t who we want to be. They are the moments of evidence that our inner critic files and brings back to remind us of our limitations – the hard fact stuff that is irrefutable and weighs heavy on our heart and mind. I had a recent moment like this.

I was dealing with a couple of difficult situations on the same morning that I had booked a blood donation with Canadian Blood Services. My mind was a bit preoccupied as I drove up to the building and parked my vehicle. I had completed my pre-screening ahead of time, and arrived 10-minutes early for my appointment, as per my standard practice. When I walked into the building, I removed my boots and turned to the door to my left, when I heard a voice behind me say, “good morning, do you have an appointment?” The question caught me off guard — not because of the message, but more likely due to its location. It was coming from the “out” door.

I turned to see a young man in a medical mask and smock, standing behind a small table with an appointment binder on it. “Did you have an appointment?” he repeated. “Yes, my name is David White”, I replied.

He looked down at his binder and then looked up at me to say, “You’re early. Would you mind leaving and coming back?”

I looked at him, then down at my boots (as if they had the answer) and then returned my gaze to the young man and said, “sure.” I put my boots back on, exited the building, climbed in my vehicle and drove away. My blood pressure was rising, I was agitated and indignant. I was embarrassed by being caught off guard and not knowing how to reply. By walking up to a building and missing all of the obvious signs of change. My head had been down, and I was not present to the moment. My self-talk was not at its best. I was muttering in my mind, the words of a conversation that I can not recall – but in a tone that I can’t forget. My ego got the best of me, and my essence did not get the chance to shine.

Grace: “the safe space where we take 100% accountability for our actions, reconcile our mistakes and then move back into alignment with the delivery of promise”.

I can’t deny that was me. I won’t justify my actions with a position of having lots on my mind (There are reasons that are not excuses), or referring to “stupid” COVID-policies, or lack of training, or whatever. It was me that drove away from Canadian Blood Services, not leaving my donation behind to help others, and getting all flustered and indignant about being asked to wait 10 minutes. Ten minutes.

Own it. Denying it doesn’t work. Your spirit knows you’re lying and it becomes regret and shame, or maybe worse yet, arrogance.




Release it.

I would go back and apologize, but in this case there is only a need to rebook. However I need to learn from this – and I think I have.

This past week I needed to stop by a store for some bird seed – the local racoon has been enjoying our buffet far too much. I sat in my vehicle for 20 minutes, waiting for the doors to open. I was second in line, standing respectfully back 6 feet. When the door opened, the man ahead of me began to enter the store directly, but was met with a lady in a white smock, medical mask and spray gun. She had started to speak to him, but he had been caught off guard and missed what she had said, so she repeated. “Sir, I need to spray your hands before you enter the store.”

“What?”, he retorted.

“Sir, I need to spray your hands before you enter the store”, she repeated, again.

“I don’t want that stuff on my hands”, he replied.

“Sir, if I don’t spray your hands, you can’t enter the store.”

“You better have some good battery chargers in there for me”, he responded indignantly.

Without looking up, and from a physical stance that looks like full-on weariness following a 12-hour shift, she replies, “I have no idea what we have in the store. Next, please.”

The man proceeds into the store, and I step up for my turn. I look at the lady, extend my hands, palms up and say, “Hit me!”

I don’t think she smiled or chuckled, but that’s okay. I may not have alleviated much from her weight, but at least I didn’t add any.

Grace is like that. It’s weightless. It its a gift of reciprocity. Inhale, exhale and let yourself be. You are better for others and feel better of yourself. No need for the ego to defend itself. Just be the essence of who you were created to be.