I like to think of myself as a really nice girl, and I am. But even nice girls slip once in a while.
I was called to participate in a focus group on hearing loss. If there was anything I was right for, it was this. I got paid handsomely to say, “What did ya say?” for two hours.
When I got there waiting for it to start, a fellow focuser came in sitting across from me immediately jumping on her phone. I was already having discomfort from the ambient noise buzzing out of a huge heating system making it difficult to hear.
Her loud conversation piggybacked onto that, compromising this nice girl.
I tried containing my irritation flipping through magazines, counting to ten, but after fifteen minutes of her flagrant unconsciousness, I had had enough.
“Excuse me, do you think you can maybe take that in the hall? It’s really disturbing me?”
She gave me a sidewards glance without even taking a breath clearly not caring one way or the other. Then two more people came in also a little taken aback by her behavior so finally, she ended the call.
The recruiter then came to call the roll, and this woman wasn’t on it. There was some error made, and they never confirmed her for the group. I thought she was going to cry.
When she got up, I really noticed what tough shape she was in. Heavy, bent over, used a cane…a train wreck concealed in a body. Her clothes were in need of a good clean while the rest of her just required plain care. My shame over losing patience washed over me.
We’re not all culturally, or necessarily even civilly, together. Some of us have serious threads hanging in those areas. I’m blessed to say I don’t, but I need to recognize others who slip in front of me.
I thought about her a lot the rest of the day. How hard it must be walking, communicating, hence what that phone call was probably all about. Having to fight your way through life’s…you weren’t confirmed for the group, not to mention missing out on the money.
There are no accidents. I was meant to be assaulted by her manic phone call to remind me to take pause before taking offense.