Exquisite Transitions

Exploring the opportunities and gifts of changing times

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Facing the Bully

By both example and predisposition I have typically avoided confrontation. In fact, when I was a teen and I  started to stand up for myself, I was actually discouraged from doing so by my mother “for the sake of harmony,” and told to apologize when a family member spoke inappropriately to me. (She has since apologized to me for insisting I do so.)

For a number of years now I have had the opportunity in small ways to stand up for myself, and interestingly there are still people in my world who are more interested in “how it looks,” or “whether its important enough.”

Again, I accepted a paradigm that ‘walking away’ was the higher form of handling these situations. And I suspect that idea is still true, however, I sense that like learning to accept and express anger (another transition I have made), first one must bring something which has been out of balance, into balance.

Standing Out

Standing Out

So today I had a more vivid experience of facing the bully. I apparently made a serious miscalculation at the deli counter at our local supermarket by failing to take a number. There were two people behind the counter and only one customer on line–I didn’t see a need to take a number. Well apparently the lady who came up behind me several minutes later, while I was still waiting to be served, didn’t see it that way.

When her number was called and she was going to begin ordering, I made it clear that I was next and had been waiting, despite not taking a number. She somehow bought into the idea that having the next number trumped actually being there first.  She responded by cursing me out and calling me a Bxxxxx.

Not having much experience in dealing with such individuals (thankfully), I was taken aback, but energized from an internal source to stand up for myself. And despite subsequent thoughts and names that have flowed from my brain in reaction to her attacks, I was able to maintain a civil level, while not backing down.

When she told me to shut my mouth–I take it she was not used to people standing up for themselves and would just cower at being called names–I said I would open my mouth as much as I wanted. (Childish sounding, I know…but that’s how it came out.)

The point was, I would not be silenced by this bully. And somewhere from within there was an Editor at work that filtered all the nasty things I might have said,  but didn’t, and kept the tone level, enabling me to be Me without reacting to this bully by turning into her. I am very grateful to that Editor. Interestingly though, when I was out of the moment, the Editor disappeared and the thoughts started flowing. I guess that’s one way of working it out LOL.

Being a person who reflects on my own actions and words I have questioned my engaging in this encounter and how and what was said. While I believe the day will come when I can choose to turn my back and not engage a person like this, it seems very clear to me that for now, it is imperative that I find my voice–correction, that I use my voice–to stand up for myself.

I say use my voice because in dream state I have done this in very much the same way repeatedly over the past number of years. Just as today, it came from a part of me that was strong, centered and not given to lowering myself to the level of the consciousness I was encountering.

Until today, I have not had the opportunity to use my voice, my physical body, my waking mind, to engage in this way. So while it wasn’t exactly pleasant, I feel that it was a healthy and necessary step to transition from acquiescing and appeasing to refusing to diminish myself so someone else can feel better about them self.

I look forward to the day when my knowing is so secure that I can choose to walk away and let the bullies play their games by themselves.

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