This post is part of my 30 day creative writing challenge. Click here to learn more about the challenge or explore the other posts in this series.
Today I saw myself in another man and hated what I saw
I was in an argument that had absolutely no purpose. An argument, simply for the sake of arguing. Picking sides in a battle because I had to be right, but by the time I noticed, it was already too late.
I was too stubborn to step back and too determined to prove to myself that I was right. Because, well… I was right.
But so was he. Kind of.
And so there we sat. Both right, yelling at each other for no real reason, and then I saw it.
I saw myself.
Looking at this man I saw myself arguing with so many others over the course of my life. Defending my position because I was already emotionally committed to the argument.
Unwilling to humble myself because my macho man mechanism was in full force.
I hated that moment. It made me realize how it must feel to sit on the other side of a stubborn mule like myself. I found myself in the middle of the same argument that I must have had a hundred times before. Almost always as the immovable rock.
So as hard as it is for me to do, I tried to humble myself. I tried to take a step back but I couldn’t fully disengage. I still had enough of the old me left in the tank to try and show him how much like me he was actually being. But it was of no use.
He had no interest in having himself tell himself how much like himself he was acting.
And it was in that very moment that I grew. As if I had hit a psychological growth spurt. As I sat there dumbfounded, caught in this real life freeze-frame of a time, not long ago, when I was the one who was arguing recklessly. Oblivious to the futility of it all.
It was in that moment that I realized how childish I have been all along and quite often still am. It was in that moment that I realized there was no sense in being right if all it meant was feeling wrong.
And so it ended. Another tough lesson in this game we call life, but one we would all be well served to learn. Maybe next time, I’ll see myself in a man and like what I see. And maybe I’ll learn how to be more like him. Maybe I’ll learn to swallow my pride and take a step back. Or maybe, I’ll just do it all over again, like I have before.
After all, do any of us ever really change?
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