“There is a time to let things happen and a time to make things happen.”
Hugh Prather in Notes on Love and Courage
How do you know the difference? When to let it be, just leave things alone and wait patiently, carefully, thoughtfully? And when to step in and get the blazing job done?
Well, if the house is on fire or someone broke their leg…..for sure do something. Yesterday when Aimee and I were having a walk (actually Aimee was having a carry because she had decided not to walk. Getting older is the pits), a large sweaty man of maybe 20 or so was talking loudly, shouting actually, waving something around in the air that I thought was a cell phone and pacing back and forth on the sidewalk near us. A slight woman dressed in summer shorts and sleeveless black T shirt came from somewhere shouting and calling after him. She had blood on her neck. She had a male friend with her who was trying to calm her and handing her tissue or something white to, I figured, help clean and stop the blood.
She was outraged and absolutely not willing to let it go. He friend was encouraging her to stop and settle a bit.
It did not occur to me to do anything, as in call 911. I did wonder if I ought to intervene in some way, but had Aimee to attend to and really didn’t feel especially safe to do so anyway. Very soon 2 police cars with lights blooming skidded up to the curb beside Aimee and me but around the corner from where I last had seen these people. They had what looked like a rifle to me.
Someone decided to do something. I didn’t. Who was right? Both of us I expect. I don’t think it was my scene to be playing a role in other than keeping my dog and myself out of it all. But I am very glad someone tried to intervene and I hope everyone turned out to find safety.
How to assess? I really do not know. Intuitively this felt like someone else’s story and I was surprised I had even a view from the edge. My own need for someone else’s drama was nil. I have more than enough going on in my own life. Just getting my 14 pound dog home in the heat, carrying her a mile or more, felt like enough for me. But it does give cause for wonder….when to step in…..when to let well enough alone. When is it simply none of my business.
Something I offer you to think about, to be curious about, to look for clarity in what you believe and value: do you step in when needed? Do you step in when best you not? It really is okay to leave some things undone.
- I am grateful Aimee finally decided to walk a bit of the way home yesterday in the heat when she was simply too tired to do the job
- I am grateful I had the wisdom to stay out of a mess that was not mine to be trampling around in.
- I am grateful for today which has become a delicious day of writing
- I am grateful for the beer I am having that is quenching my hot summer day’s thirst.
Love and wisdom, Nancy