During my marriage, my husband and I were at a party together for one of his male mentors.
We were all in the middle of a conversation, when I noticed an elderly gentlemen, about eighty, sitting all alone, watching the activity, and hoping that someone would sit and talk with him.
I asked about him and my husband’s friend said, “Oh that’s my dad. He doesn’t really know anyone and he’s a bit shy.”
I immediately excused myself from the conversation and went to sit with him and keep him company.
Later that night, when my husband and I were driving home, he admitted something to me.
“When you left to sit with my friend’s father,” He said. “I turned to my friend and said snidely, “Oh what a good little enabler. What a lovely little people-pleaser. She’ll save him!”
My husband paused here, embarrassed and said, “Do you know what my friend said to me?”
I waited… not sure what I was about to hear.
“He said that you are a kind, thoughtful person, and he appreciated how sweet you were being by making his father feel welcome in the group.”
I was not smug or self-righteous.
I did not use the moment against my husband.
We had both learned a lesson regarding choices.
I knew that my choice was not related to enabling, or people-pleasing, it was my higher spiritual self, choosing to be compassionate and present for another human being.
I had not chosen to go sit with our friend’s father to please anyone or make an impression: I had chosen to sit with my friend’s father because it was the right thing to do, the loving choice.
My motives were clear.
And my husband learned… that he had used poor judgement in his choice of words; his motives were suspect and so… he made an immediate amends.
We ended our night on good terms with each other, both of us reminded, that when we make a choice we must check our motives, and listen for our own unique inner voice of guidance that will ensure we are walking firmly on our spiritual path.
“Dear God, thank you for guiding me in all of my day-to-day choices. Help me to keep my motives focused on love and compassion.”