Monday, November 26, 2012

Humbled & Apologetic

While waiting in line at a local Starbucks this morning I did something to someone that was not only uncalled for but unjustified. While no words were spoken, sadly my snarky attitude did all the talking for me.

As I pulled up to the drive-thru window to pay for my frappaccino, the barista said, "Your drink's been paid for by the woman who just left and she asked me to give you this note." I was shocked expecting something equally obnoxious in her note (and wouldn't blame her one bit if she did) but here's what it said, You're welcome . . . Happy Holidays! Take a moment to slow down and relax. No need to get upset. Have a safe and wonderful day.

After leaving, I pulled into a small parking lot and scanned the larger lot to see if she'd parked somewhere nearby. I wanted to thank her and more importantly, apologize for my rude behavior but she was long gone.

While my behavior bothered me, the fact I couldn't apologize to her in person bothered me even more so. When I got home I immediately pulled out the local newspaper, which has a section called The Vent where people email short comments on just about anything. I sat down and emailed The Vent the following, To the woman in the maroon Toyota Highlander with Nittany Lions and Parrothead stickers waiting in line at the Doylestown Starbucks on Monday -- thank you for the frappaccino and your kind note. However, and more importantly, thank you for the reality check and your kindness and generosity. You didn't deserve my attitude and I didn't deserve your gesture. Please accept my apology.

I hope she reads The Vent and sees my apology. More importantly, I hope she can find it in her heart to forgive me. Not only was I humbled by her gesture but she taught me a lesson I hope never to forget -- attitudes often speak louder than words.



Kate I said...

Wow did nothing that each of us hasn't done many times, but just haven't been "lucky" enough to have been called on it in such a profound way. She may or may not see the ad but you're likely putting out a much different energy into the world which is enough. I really, really love your response!

And thanks so much for sharing this experience... I appreciate your candidness and I for one, have been made more aware of how the subtle effects of my attitude can effect others. You're so right...our frustrations are our own to deal with. A good reminder for the upcoming season of so much self imposed stress and frustration! ((hugs))

Anonymous said...

Beautiful! Thank you for sharing this with us. I believe she had already forgiven you and that's why she wrote the note. :)

Hugs, Sharon