Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Before I go and make the soup (R.T. is making the chicken soup. I'm making some clear vegetable soup for Bish and I)

Here they are again, the High Holidays, the time of year we look into our souls.

We don’t have to be religious or observant to do this. Actually, we don’t even have to be Jewish, do we? It is an opportunity.

Last year I took this opportunity to approach someone with whom I share a complex, uncomfortable, and unpleasant relationship. I said I was sorry that our relationship was so aggressive; I suggested we made a fresh start; I offered peace, friendship.

It took me a few days to start to doubt the sincerity of his reaction to my words, but his behavior towards me, during the days, weeks, and months that followed, proved to me that he had manipulated me.

It is hard for us to believe that some people do not want peace. When someone doesn’t want peace, we automatically try to work out what we have been doing wrong to hurt them so. It is hard for us to grasp, or accept, that sometimes it has nothing to do with us, or our behavior; that they may have their own agenda and that they may not care who gets hurt, as long as they get what they want.

Many months later, I once again found myself in an opportunity to speak to this person about our ever-deteriorating relationship. This time I was less apologetic. I told him how very offended I was by his behavior. ‘Oh’, he said, ‘It’s not personal.’