November 6, 2015 by phicks2012
Actually, I’d finished up with errands (feed store, hardware store, dollar store, gas station. etc) and wasn’t scheduled to pick Jason up from the duplexes — where he was manfully changing out a window a/c unit and putting the sort of finishing touches perfectionists like him tend put on yard work — for about 30 minutes. I knew, from past experience, that he wasn’t going to be done when I got there, but I also knew that I really didn’t have time to go home, or to shop for groceries, or to save the world.
I also knew that if I showed up early I’d wind up standing around trying to find something to do. Jason has a way of wanting to do everything himself — that perfectionist thing again — and will start vibrating with frustration if I touch anything he plans to work on himself. Hey! Don’t get me wrong! I do very much appreciate the fact that I have a helper that self-motivated, and would much rather have that problem than to have an assistant who loafs around waiting to be ordered to help. Been there, done that. However, there have been times when I’ve paced the floor with nothing to do for hours and my back starting to ache from standing around on a hard surface, feeling as though I were just “in the way”.
Me: “Why don’t I just take the vent off and replace the furnace filter?”
Jason: (Starts shaking his head, drops what he’s doing, and starts the filter himself, all the while making me feel that I’ve interrupted what he was doing to begin with)
Me: “Jason, I was going to do that myself!”
Jason: (Impatiently) “Just…just let me do it.”
Me: (Sighs and gives up)
The funny thing is that every once in a while he’ll actually WANT me to do something, but it’s nearly always something I really should NOT be doing — oh, like fetching big buckets of water (when I have a pulled back muscle) — or CAN not do — like trying to touch up shoe molding in a dark room (when that means getting up and down with that pulled muscle and focusing on details that I cannot see due to currently poor vision). Go figure!
So there I was, sitting in a parking lot with a blank sheet of scratch paper, a pen, and time on my hands, wishing it was late enough in the day to call and annoy a friend without cutting into their work day or family time — though I knew the ones who mattered would be okay with that anyway.
Instead I came up with the following list:
1) Listen to your rants even when they get boringly repetitive.
2) Offer to kick ass for you, and even if they don’t mean that literally you know it means they’ll have your back.
3) Make you laugh when you’re down or frustrated.
4) Stand up for you when other people say negative things about you.
5) Believe in you even when you aren’t sure you believe in yourself.
6) Are willing to work out differences, because your friendship matters.
7) Don’t automatically believe it when other people tell them you’ve said or done something to hurt them.
8) Tell you the truth, in a caring way, when you need to hear it.
9) Are happy for you when something good happens for you, even if their own life currently sucks.
10) Allow you to be imperfect.
So, what do you think?