My hard time started around one in the afternoon.  It began with an anti-gay statement someone made, pointedly, in my presence.  Between then and three thirty, three more things that are difficult for me to handle happened.  All this in a heat wave.

I was in distress from the first happening, and I had decided a while ago that I’d try to look at my distress in terms of my character defects.  Today’s character defect is “being discouraged.”  I certainly was discouraged.  I could look at these situations, and my distress, through the lens of I guess almost any of the character defects, but that’s overwhelming.  So for today, it is “being discouraged.”

I was talking this over with Carole and we wondered why “being discouraged” is a character defect.  Some situations and some times seem to call for discouragement.  The dictionary says discourage means

to deprive of courage, hope, or confidence; dishearten; dispirit.
If I have lost courage, hope, confidence, heart and spirit, certainly I’m dwelling in a character defect or two.
Being discouraged seems to point to a lack of acceptance.  My continuing struggle is that, at work and other times (like with my children), I am called to try to change people.
I briefly discussed one of the problems of the day with my boss.  He said something along the lines of “they will always be with us.”  The people who take advantage and who try to get over will always be with us.  Some stay for a long time and others move on quickly, but someone always takes their place.  Dealing with these people and these issues is a not-fun part of my job.  I do it to help as much as I can to create a good environment for the people we work for, for the clients.
I have to learn how better to keep heart and spirit present when these things pile up on me.

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