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First off, I’d like to apologize to everyone. I’m still behind on comments, blogs, posts, etc. As I said a couple posts before, ’tis the season!

I spent this evening going through our garbage. Yes, you read that correctly. Mom did the shopping last Monday and bought all the presents for our extended family. The only problem was that she halfheartedly unloaded the groceries (see my previous post). She lost all the gift cards and all the cards. When she discovered that this evening, my peace was shattered. Here I was, settling down at my computer, listening to the Star Wars: Attack of the Clones soundtrack, when the door to my study flew open and the banshee was unleashed. After ransacking the house, going through all the bags we saved, checking purses (and the car)… there was only one option. It meant that I, while I was being a dutiful daughter and helping with the groceries, threw the bag they were in away. I could have sworn on my firstborn child (funny, considering I most likely won’t have one) that I did no such thing, but I didn’t care to reason with her logic at that point in time.

So that meant I got to grab a pair of gloves, walk out to the road in my nightgown (living in the middle of nowhere has it’s advantages), lug the giant trash can in, and  sift through a weeks’ worth of garbage. So that’s what I did. As I was picking apart some fermented fruit and questionable objects in ziploc bags, I started to think about the strange things we do for the people we care about. More specifically, the conditions placed upon us by other people.

Some conditions are normal. For example, in my romantic relationships, I demand that the other person not cheat on me. I don’t think that’s too much to ask. Is it? In my friendships, I expect honesty, even when I might not like it. In all my relationships, I expect respect. I don’t think any of these things are unreasonable.

But what happens when things go wrong? One time, I had a friend ask me for a loan. I said no, and it was WWIII up in this bitch. I don’t lend money to people. I keep people and money waaaaaay apart. Way apart. Been burned too many times by trying to combine people and money, so I learned. Is that bad to have that condition? Does it make me a bad person? Not lending money is a common rule in my friendships. I will be there for you whenever you need a kind word, some encouragement, someone to listen to whatever random nonsense you want to babble about… I’ll even drive hours and hours to see you. But do not ask me for money.  Now, if something is going wrong and you have nowhere else to turn, someone might leave something anonymously. Poof! Surprise. Santa must love you.

Another instance, there was a difference of opinion. Thought WWIII was bad? It was the Battle of Edessa and I was fighting on the side of the Romans. What I gathered from this was: So, just because I don’t agree with you… I’m a horrible person? Wonderful. Is it wrong to ask for my own personal viewpoints to be respected? Parts may be wrong… parts may be right. But it’s what I believe. That is another one of my conditions. I demand the same level of respect I give. Is that too much to ask as well?

I don’t think my basis of fidelity, honesty, respect, and consideration for my person apart from my finances is some Earth shattering concept. It’s not as if I demand something I don’t show and give freely with joy.

So yes everyone, that’s what goes through your mind in the middle of the night as you sift garbage to get your mom to stop having a panic attack. You think about events in your life that have pushed you out of your comfort zone and your realm of boundaries. But then you decide that these boundaries aren’t so bad after all and that by observing them, you eradicate drama. And possibly some irate people along the way. No loss there!

Speaking of irate people, I became one of them when Mom walked out and said that the bag had been in her room all along.  She found it most amusing that I’d been going through the trash in order to make everything okay.

The sentiment was not shared.