As of late, life has handed me many lessons about standing up for myself.
Historically, this is not my strong suit. I have tended to give in, to put the desires of others ahead of my own. I have been a pressure cooker, building up steam and exploded when the steam broke through. When I have stood up, it has been in a damaging sort of way.
Life hands us the same lessons over and over until we learn them. I am getting tired of this lesson so I will try to learn it well this time. I will stand up for myself as necessary, but in a dignified sort of way. In a way that preserves bridges.
I did it with the orthodontist, even though at first I wanted to burn that bridge. But I didn’t. Instead I wrote a thank-you note for giving me the help I wanted when I asked for it, and kindly but firmly turned down her many offers for alternative treatments. Now our relationship is over, but on good terms. It feels good.
Tonight I stand at a similar crossroads: I can choose to stand up for myself with dignity or I can burn a bridge in the passion of a moment. Alan and I chose to discontinue our sessions with a play therapist we were seeing for Mia to help her with some anxiety issues. Although we do like play therapy, the therapist herself left much to be desired. It was stressful. So much that it gave me two days of a massive headache and a stiff neck.
Instead of responding to her email in which she asks why we ended our sessions, I am keeping quiet. I am letting myself simmer down. I will look to my wise people for advice. Maybe I will respond, maybe not.
Whatever I do, I am glad I stood up for myself. And I plan to leave the bridge intact.