Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Mama On: Minding Your Own Business

"When people choose to sleep, it's not your job to wake them up."

There are some people, like the guy who shows up at your gym in the burmuda shorts and black dress socks. You know that somebody told him it was a bad idea, but he chose to do it, anyway. Well, that's largely what this principle of Mamaknology is built upon: knowing when to keep your mouth shut. People are going to do what they are going to do, and you can't always stop them -- especially when they enjoy the madness they leave in their wake.

My mother liked to call it, keeping your own counsel. But, the truth of the matter is, whether you keep it to yourself or not, some people (even you and me from time to time) are going to make bad choices. At its best, making a bad choice will teach a lesson and make us better people. At its worst, making a bad choice can be life altering and dangerous.

So, as Mamaknologists, it is incumbent upon us to learn the difference between being supportive and becoming an enabler of stuff that's just flat out crazy. Somebody who works fulltime and won't pay their bills? That's crazy and we all know it. People who drink and drive, then try to convince the world (including the police) that they are not committing a criminal act? Accept that if you want to -- just don't ride with them. Women and men who take up with (and keep returning!) to abusive mates -- I'm not even going to say what I'm thinking.

But take it seriously when people around you elect to live lives that you wouldn't want to have to justify to Jesus -- or your mama. If they choose to sleep, it may not be your job to wake them -- but you don't have to stick around to make the coffee when they finally decide to wake up, either.

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