A friend once told me about a brunch she attended where they had ordered a cinnamon roll to share with the table. One of the gals reached over and took the center piece for herself. I think I audibly gasped when I heard this. Could not imagine what possessed this woman to assume that was okay. I have shared this story with others searching for the wisdom and why of it. Some people said good for her taking what she wants and others felt similarly horrified at her brazenness. It has taken awhile, but I've since realized it was actually not about the woman or her motivations, but rather what it brought up for me. I’ve read the airplane placard about putting one’s oxygen mask on first countless times and can accept the sound reasoning of such a thing. Have blessedly never been tested and while I would hope that I c/would follow instructions it has generally not been my orientation in life. Neither for the proverbial placing my mask on first or claiming the soft gooey center of the roll. I saw doing for self as selfish. Blessedly I no longer subscribe to this thinking, but how far does the pendulum swing?
I find the heart of my coaching work is helping my clients discover what they value and using those values as a rudder as they set off down their respective rivers or rapids depending on the day. Without fail it is soon illuminated that they also need to find their value separate from “other.” We are a society of hungry ghosts in varying degrees. Gaping maws looking for our next fix.
While this inquiry is not entirely about the cinnamon roll it is also not not about the cinnamon roll. That I was writing this in a cafe that served cinnamon rolls it seemed fitting, nay required for research, that I order one. One where I can have the center to myself. Thing is it was way too sweet. Made me think I'd rather share it. After much swirling I’ve come back around to the important of sharing our centers. Perhaps it's not about scoring the best part of a thing, but rather the shared experiences. I say this not to mute or condemn individual striving or achievement. Or suggest the exactitude of measuring out portions so everyone has exactly the same as the way, but what about also celebrating the communal. For me it was about not wanting to elbow or knee my way through or to a thing. It was likely more about being considered the "good girl" and demurring so others could have and then privately feeling shocked that they took what I offered up. Notable exceptions are beating a crowd to the bathroom in public spaces, but I come by that honestly as I am my father’s daughter and we do not generally handle lines well.
Somewhere between taking/going after what we want and knowing that it is not necessarily the thing of a thing that fills us up.
I do not have the answers and am just being with the inquiry today.