“The Wisdom to Know the Difference,” is the title of a book by my night stand. I’ve read it a few times. I actually like these “life lessons” books (along with all sorts of other kinds of books!).
Last night as I finally got into bed (my “birthday” was a crazy work/kid day) I glanced at the book and suddenly heard the title in my mind. The Wisdom to Know the Difference – Wow! Amazing six words!
Having wisdom is a goal I think we set and likely never fully achieve (thankfully, I suppose). And often when I think I have the wisdom in a particular situation – I usually don’t, which is why thinking you have wisdom is different from actually letting go and allowing wisdom to happen.
Yesterday, someone contacted me at the end of the day to say “Happy Birthday.” It was someone who I know just said it because they felt a duty to do so. The communication seemed strange to me and I was unsure how to respond. At first, I ignored it … hoping it would just leave my mind. But it didn’t – so I responded.
When I did, this person told me what a loving, peaceful and kind person I was and that they just wanted to recognize my birthday. When I was younger, I may have fallen for that message. I may have felt guilty or that I had been too quick to judge. But in that split second, I looked down and saw my hands and I realized — I’m not the gullible 20-year-old person I used to be. I’m old(er). I have hand wrinkles! I have wisdom to know the difference between authenticity and not. I just sat there and let that feeling permeate my being.
I have the wisdom to know the difference.
We all do. We have the wisdom to know a toxic message from a real message. We have the wisdom to know when something is just not right. We have to wisdom to be able to walk away from the negative and move toward the positive.
Yes, I’m all about spreading love, peace, joy and I do forgive. Sometimes I forgive when it’s not in my best interest … we all do. But we have the power to wish people well in their lives, hope that they find the right path but know that we’re not responsible for the choices they make nor are we responsible to clean-up their mess. This is true even with our own family members – as difficult as that might be.
Sometimes, the hardest love to give is the toughest love. We can live in the land of poor-me or we can wake up, use our wisdom (and no matter how old we are — we all have it) and make a change. And that’s a decision based in wisdom!
I’m looking forward to another interesting year of life lessons — most of which I likely won’t learn in a book!
Have a great weekend!