The Backseat of the Bus

Being a self-sufficient, single woman with no children for the majority of my thirties, I have been allowed to be—shall we say—selfish. There is no mistaking the fact that it has been “all about me” for quite some time now and honestly I have, admittedly, had no problem with that.

Life is pretty simple and things tend to go “my way” when I am the only one making the decisions and calling all the shots… for myself. For example, I have thus far used some form of the words “I” or “me” NINE times in this entry. See what I mean? (OK, make that 10).

So if being in the driver’s seat has been my status quo for so long — you can only imagine the adjustment that might be required if or when the time comes that said seat should be forfeited for any reason.

With the recent loss of my fiance’s mother, I have found myself in a brand new seat. As I struggled, after the first two weeks, at the advent of my new seating assignment, my mother said to me: “Joanna, it is time now for you to take a backseat on the bus.”

Of course she was referring to being the support person for someone whose needs are far greater than my own. Her words have been such a perfect reminder of precisely what my role is right now. And her wisdom and way of thinking has inspired me to fully embrace the responsibilities that accompany the view from the back.

It has been from the vantage point of this new place that I have begun to “see” many new things for the very first time.

I have seen that…

  • It is much easier to push than to pull, therefore helping someone from behind rather than in front.
  • I am capable of caring more for another person than I ever dreamed possible.
  • Suddenly I have all the strength I need to do what is necessary for the other.
  • The world exists largely in that which lies beyond my own reflection and it is a whole lot bigger than I ever thought it was.
  • I can be much more useful offering a hand in someone else’s journey when I am not so focused on the drama, flaws or calamities of my own.
  • The obstacles I thought were mountains usually are mere molehills.

So as it turns out — the view from the “back of the bus” really is the one that offers the best perspective of all.

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