Anything from a white lie, to your belief that you have a right to respond negatively to someone because they have hurt you, can test your integrity. Reactions, grudges, greed, and unforgiveness can all compromise our integrity. Webster’s dictionary lists integrity as a noun, but I have to say it often feels like a verb. As it seems like an action that we are supposed to take.
I consider myself to be a fairly reasonable, loving person. But there have been many moments where the “not-so-nice Kimmy” wants to be unleased. Especially when it involves my children. Recently, my daughter and I were lucky enough to be at a concert in which my oldest son was performing. (Yes, a proud “Ma” moment, and if you follow me on social media you’ll understand why).
This was the last time this tour that we would be able to watch him, so needless to say, we were excited. Just as the show started, we found ourselves surrounded by two couples…. two intoxicated couples. We were not at “that kind” of show, and I was with my young daughter.
They were bumping into us and spilling alcohol on us. Not fun. After two nice attempts to ask them to be careful and multiple attempts by security, our mother-daughter experience was becoming something we had definitely not expected. I remember during all of this, my daughter kept looking at me, watching how I would react to these people. I think she was expecting me to unleash the other Kimmy, and believe me, I wanted to.
But as hard as it was not to react, I realized there was a bigger lesson here than just an unpleasant experience. These people went out of their way to bother me, and while I set my boundaries with them, I didn’t allow them to provoke a reaction. It was not easy at all, but I hope the benefits for my daughter to witness that little drama will only help her when adversity comes her way.
Especially when outside influences constantly try to undermine your self-control. Nothing or nobody should ever be worth giving up a part of who you are. And, ironically enough, you have to learn to just “shake it off”. Remember, as much as we parents are watching our children, they are watching and learning from us. Make it matter, and model integrity to help mold them for life.