2010 has been the year of excuses.
2010 has been the year in which I have learned, irrevocably, that in all but one case, “I give you my word” finally means something else entirely these days.
To all but one person who has said this phrase to me this year, I am now convinced that “I give you my word” is code for the following: “Anything that I say before or after that statement is null and void, and I have as many excuses as there have been Sunrises for why it is so”.
If I had $100.00 for every time I have heard this phrase and the ensuing excuses this year, I could invest the lot and live off the interest alone, quite comfortably.
“But Mistress Savannah, things happen and…”
Do you know what an excuse is? I bet you don’t. An excuse is a testament to a failure on the excuse-giver’s part. It is also an example of bad behaviour prettied up to look like something else. In some cases, people don’t even know that they are making excuses. But they are. In some cases, what people think are legitimate reasons are also excuses when you strip the words back and look at the centre.
I do not make promises lightly. I never have, and I do not make promises very often. If I was ever to ‘give you my word’ (and I would be tempted to avoid that phrase now that I know what it means to most people) then you would know that, even if I died before fulfilling that promise, I would have set things up to ensure that such a promise was kept.
Now, that is not to say that I do not follow through on something without that promise. I do it all the time, and this Blog post touches on that, today.
This post goes out to two people I have never met. This is for you Marie and Jess.
You see, these two beautiful strangers gifted me with something that others had promised me this year, but never delivered.
Neither of these beautiful people gave me promises. In fact, when I was first approached by Marie, her main concern was that I would be angry at her offer! They did not say “I give you my word” at all. Instead, they just said that they wanted to give something and went on to do just that; they gave an utterly unexpected gift.
Yesterday I was talking with my son. He was upset about something and I didn’t understand. He is full of fire, and guts, and strength, my son. I raised him to have those qualities, and he has them in abundance.
“MUM! WTF??!” he as good as screamed. I had queried what he was saying. “So many people talk the talk but they don’t walk the walk! But there are people out there who aren’t like that! They talk the talk and walk the walk and so do you! You always have!”.
I stared at him in so much confusion that I probably looked like I had early onset dementia.
“No I don’t”, was my reply. “I just get the job done”.
I am pretty sure that, at that point, he contemplated bashing his own head into the door jamb out of his frustration with me, but he didn’t. Instead, with almost infinite patience (and through gritted teeth) he said “Exactly! WTF do you think that saying means?!”
To be honest, I had always thought that the saying was talking about something much louder than what I do. I go about my business quietly, without bluff and bluster. I just get the job done and, until my son’s words to me yesterday, I never once thought that saying applied to me.
But I think he is right. I guess it doesn’t always have to involve big talk at all.
His words got me thinking about what that saying really means, and my thoughts turned to the three people that I have spoken of in this Blog Post. I now know three people who talk the talk and walk the walk, and I have immeasurable respect for them all!
I may not make promises. Maybe I don’t need to? I don’t know. All I know is that I just get the job done.
I am incredibly thankful for knowing these three people, especially at a time when I am feeling tired. They all inspire me.