(May 8, 2018) My mom is 85 years old and she is aggressive. And, she taught me how to be aggressive, too. It’s how she taught me the right way to treat people.
Her aggression shows up mainly in three areas. Three things that she passed on to me and our entire family. Watch out for my family. I’m telling you, we’re about to get up in your faces…
The Agressive Behaviors
Not just nice. Not just civil. GREGARIOUS. My mom will talk your face off, and she will enjoy every minute of it. And, she will make sure you enjoy every minute of it or she will die trying. She will seek you out and make sure you feel loved by the time you leave her.
This was a hard lesson for me to learn because, unlike my mom, I’m an introvert. I really like my alone time. I need my alone time after socializing. But, when I’m out, I’ve learned how to be gregarious. My friend’s husband told me that I was the worst introvert he had ever met. Ha! I’m a socialized, gregarious introvert. It can be done!
I read a tweet the other day from a guy who was complaining that in the morning he’s minding his own business and people keep saying hi to him. Buddy, you better stay away from my family. We will ruin your day. We will greet and talk you into the ground. Sorry, not sorry. The world is a divisive place. And, if you are actually mad at someone for saying hi to you in the morning, then you need us more than you know.
My mom grew up in a very small, homogeneous town in Southern Missouri. I’ve always been a bit surprised by how naturally inclusive she is. I think she is a textbook example that discrimination is a taught behavior and not something you’re born to exhibit. She loves everyone and she is going to include you in as much as she can. And, she wants to learn about you. More than you even want to tell her.
She does not discriminate. Are you a fully tattooed? My mom is going to talk to you. Are you a random person who looks lonely? My mom is going to invite you to eat with us. Were you raised completely differently than her? Great, she wants to talk to you about it.
My family is all like this. Even the introvert. I used to make my friends mad when I would invite people outside our group to go out with us. The more, the merrier is my motto. And, it comes directly from my mom. Include everyone you can. You never know what it might mean to them.
One of my family’s favorite stories to tell about my mom happened when we were at brunch one Sunday. We were standing by the restaurant’s door waiting for a table. My mom was holding the door open for everyone. As people passed, if they said thank you, she would look at us and say, “lovely.” If they didn’t say thank you, she would look at us and say, “rude.” Lovely. Rude. Lovely. Lovely. Rude. It was hilarious and so my mom.
My family would trip all over ourselves to say thank you to the person holding the door. And, then we’d probably track you down later and say thank you again. Again, it’s not enough for my mom and my family to be cordial, we are going to be aggressively polite. And, isn’t that a nice way to use your aggression. Kill them with kindness.
This is our family. Such an aggressive-looking bunch, right? Now, come over here and let us hug you. Right now. I’m serious.