Thursday, May 24, 2012

My Mom is the North Star

This was in an email this week from someone I love:
My manager wanted to know my opinion. I said to him, “Do what is right!”

He countered, “I hate it when people put you in these kinds of positions.”

I added, “This isn’t about popularity. It’s about doing what is right."
Let me say here: Geez, Louise! Do the right thing.

It was interesting that I got the above email this week, because just this morning something came up with a friend of mine. This friend is a good person and I cherish our friendship. My friend told me about a situation and said, "Should I just do ____ and repent later or should I ask first?" Because I wanted my friend to understand that it probably wouldn't affect anything to ask first, we walked through everything together. My friend was stuck between a rock and a hard place in the two options being considered. Just as I was about to give my opinion, my friend said, "Let's come back to this."  (I think my friend already know what I would say.)

An hour later we came back to it. My friend said, "Okay, I'm ready now. What do you think I should do?" I replied, "What's the right thing to do?" My friend sighed heavily and said, "I knew you were going to say that." I said, "What would your mother say?" My friend's response: "You're gonna get in trouble!"

Some people grow up with mothers who say to them, "You're gonna get in trouble!"  I'm sorry for them.  A mother shouldn't teach a child to do what may or may not get them in trouble.  She ought to teach them to do the right thing, even when it's hard.  She ought to teach them that in both word and example.

My mom is the latter kind of mother.  I'm trying to be that kind of mother and friend.

But there is no one who is as honest and true as my mom.  Right is right, and if it's right, that's where you'll find my mom.  She's so true that sometimes it frustrates her when people try to hedge around the truth.  She doesn't understand them.  It's just in her to be that way.  She has always been my moral compass--true as the North Star--and I wish everyone had that wonderful blessing.

Because guess what?  Sometimes doing the right thing is really hard.  Sometimes doing the right thing is unpopular.  Sometimes doing the right thing might get you in trouble.  But right is right.  Always.  Wouldn't the world be great if everyone just chose the right, without worrying about their precious image or who might get ahead of them or what someone else might think?  Wouldn't it be great if other people didn't beat you up (literally or figuratively) for doing the right thing?  Yes. Yes it would. 

Well, if you choose the right, you will be on my mom's side.  You wanna be on my mom's side, trust me.  If my mom is on your side, you are in a safe camp.  If everyone was on my mom's side, the world would be a better place.

After I learned that my friend's mother would say, "You're gonna get in trouble" I responded, "My mother would say to do the right thing.  Period."  I walked away, because we also have to let people make their own choices. 

The Right won this battle, and it turned out that the two options we discussed were completely avoided, and a third, better option was found.  Win-win-win.

Thank you, North Star!


Kim and Preston said...

You always put it in perspective! I am so grateful for a mom that taught as your mother did! No wonder why you are so have a good mother who taught you right:)

Coles Fam said...

Can I just say I love you and your mom?!