Saturday, July 28, 2012

Within Tripping Distance of My Ego

I was feeling so spiritually evolved.  I agreed to help a colleague who's helping students who are collecting clothes for the needy.  She needed storage space.  I have a room which used to be my very small office when I was Assistant Chair, but now we use it to store records and artifacts and other documents which may or may not be important some day.  Along with a big file cabinet, we have piles of boxes lining the walls, but there's still a bit of floor space.

I showed the colleague the room and explained the importance of what's being stored and why it's important to me that it not be rearranged; some of the material is confidential, so we can't leave students in the room by themselves. 

The colleague turned to a third colleague and, with her back to me, said, "Is there another room I can use?"  Not a thank you.  No graciousness of any kind.  No acknowledgement of me.

I wanted to punch the colleague.  I wanted to take back my offer of space.

Instead, I went to my office to calm down.  This colleague has a reputation for her imperious manner.  She tends to treat people like manure-covered stable hands.  And I thought I would be treated differently?

Then I started to beat myself up for these "I'll show her!  I won't let her use my space at all!  Let her find some other idiot who will put up with her attitude!" thoughts.  Again, I tried to calm down.

Here I was, thinking I was so spiritually evolved, only to trip up against my own ego--and how little it takes, to bring me into tripping distance of my ego.   How tough it is to forgive myself, each time I discover that I am not Mother Theresa.  Sigh.

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