Tuesday, March 20, 2018

SLICE #20: In which I am not a very nice person.

Tuesday night. Eight o'clock.

Three of us are walking out of Spanish class.

I have had a 14 hour day.

I am tired.

I still have several more hours of work when I get home.

My head aches, as it always does after Spanish class.

I have done way too much thinking.

A woman approaches us.

Her car is dead. She needs someone to jump her. She has her own jumper cables.

D, one of my classmates says that she is driving a Hybrid car and doesn't think she can jump people.

C, the other woman walking out with us doesn't have her car. She is riding home with D.

I know I should offer to help, but I am so tired.

Before I can say anything, D jumps in.

"Our Spanish class is right in there," she says. "I'll bet someone in there can help you."

I wonder who might be able to help.

I picture L. She usually leaves her two small children at her sister's a few blocks away, then dashes away afterwards to pick them up. 

I think of Bex, our instructor, who has bronchitis and has coughed her way through class.

I slide by quietly without saying anything.

I know I should offer to help.

But I don't.

Instead, selfishly, I get into my car and drive away.

Wondering why I don't offer to help.

Wondering why I am not a little nicer.


Michelle said...

Oh, Carol. You need to be a little kinder to yourself!!! You give and give and give in so many ways throughout your 14 hour days. We cannot save or help all people in need. You must give to yourself too and in this moment, you needed time for you. Give yourself grace. Support was offered to her. Say a prayer that she received the help she needed. And the next time you can give to someone in need ... do so with all your heart. You know you are a very nice person ... I love all your comments! :)

Emily Culbertson said...

Sometimes it's just not the right time. That's what going on here. You are a nice person, I'm sure of it. Teachers who write and comment and want to part of the awesomeness of this challenge can not at the same time be Scrooge. It's just not possible. You are a human who is out of giving for the day. We can all identify. It happens to us all.
Thanks for sharing your not-so-shiny moment. It's good to read some honesty today.

Purviben Trivedi-Ziemba said...


You did not offer help as you are a human- one who fails sometimes and get up next morning. It is OK not to always help.

Do not be so hard on yourself.

Tamara said...

We all have our limits, and mine would be waaay before 14 hours with work still waiting at home! I hope you will forgive yourself, and that you get tomorrow night off!

Cathy said...

When our cup is already way too full, it can be hard to give a yes. I'm sure she found someone to help and was on the road in no time. Everyone needs a little space in their day to breathe.

Elisabeth Ellington said...

Another powerful and provocative piece. I always know when I visit your blog each day, I've going to have something to chew over for the rest of the day. I would have done the same thing as you did, I think, and then wonder afterwards why I couldn't find just a little more nice within me.

Rebecca Gomez said...

I think we've all been there. Consider this an opportunity for growth.

elsie said...

In this day and age, can we trust that people who seem to be in need, truly need help? I've read where and elderly lady says she needs help, then when someone goes to help, the helper is robbed by an accomplice. I'm afraid I've grown quite jaded and after dark makes it all the more scary. You are nice, you do much for many. This is not something to beat yourself up about.