Wednesday, October 19, 2011
Be careful what you offer
I started this blog for various reasons. One was my own upbringing. I have one of those " aunts". She knew every etiquette rule but never understood love, compassion, or elegance. I remember setting the dinning room table for dinner with a ruler. Imagine the stress when we had company for dinner.
Well, she is at it again.
My mother is flying from Houston to Philadelphia. She has not seen her sister in four years. She told my mother that she could stay with my aunts oldest son. That was until three days before she was to fly out. Imagine this, there isn't room and to top it off there isn't any time to spend with her.
My aunt offered something that was not hers to offer, her son's house. That is being presumptuous. Not elegant. To compound the situation her son had other plans.
The part that makes my blood boil, they haven't seen my mother for four years and yet they can not make time to see her? It's not like they have not had a months notice that she was coming to visit.
I do not have a close family and I was so angry at my aunt for her behavior I was going to call her and give her a piece of my mind, hopefully a piece I didn't need. Thankfully a piece of my brain did work, I remembered I dont have her phone number.
I removed myself from her life years ago. I saw the kind of person she was. She was only ever interested in appearance. There didn't need to be substance if there was appearance. She would act like the family had money. Great meals when we had guests, living in the most prominent neighborhoods,wearing the best clothing, new cars, you get the point. It looked good from the outside,except when it was only the family. Dinner at her house(we were never guests) was canned soup and sandwiches, one piece of cheese, one slice of ham, half leaf of lettuce, I am not kidding. The clothing, secondhand (the only thing I learned that was beneficial).
This may read as a rant and it is, but it also has some great points about elegance.
I needed to remove the "ugly" from my life to find my elegance.
If you offer something to someone make sure your not overstepping your bounds. Never say " oh she doesn't care", they may very much care. Think of their feelings, at this point just be respectful and ask. Kids are really bad at this, "what ever my parents have is mine" they hit up the closet and the bank account.
My aunt overstepping her bounds inconveniencing her son and hurting her sister, sadly she wont care nor will she learn. My friends think it's funny, I'll call before stopping, I will ask if something fits their schedule. One friend got annoyed, " just stop in" but I explained I was being respectful and I had no desire to stop in just as she was getting out of the shower!
So this afternoon, the daughter was the friend with the "shoulder" to cry on. Yes I would love to call my aunt, but it would be futile. In your life there are people like that. There is a scripture in the bible that comes to mind, not casting your pearls before swine. People with animal behavior will not learn by your example, they arnt looking for it. They a fine with themselves it's the world that has a problem and self improvement is for the weak.
Elegance is refinement, ongoing refinement.