Interesting experience this morning. Was driving home from dropping my son off at school. Pulled up to a stop sign where I turn right 1/2 a block from home. There was a woman walking toward the corner coming from the left, there were no vehicles, so I did a rolling stop (which I shouldn't, and don't normally do) being lazy so I didn't have to stop and wait for her. She was not at the corner, was still walking, and frankly if I'd stopped, I still don't know if she would have been at the corner. I was being lazy and not a particularly good driver.
But I as got out of my car, the pedestrian was within earshot and I heard her talking quietly. Normally I'd think the person was a little crazy, but this time I just thought she was on a cell phone - it's hard to tell these days. As she passed my house and I was entering my front door I realized what she was saying. She had said something along the lines of "nice rolling stop" and then "pedestrians have a right of way, too, you know". By the time I figure it all out I was in my house.
Okay, granted, she was pointing out my bad driving. I'll accept that. It was not something I was not aware of or hadn't noticed at the time. I had made a conscious decision at a familiar (not busy) corner to not fully stop the car and to not stop for a pedestrian who was not yet at the corner, let alone in the intersection crossing. It was borderline. I doubt a cop would have even waved a finger at me, but I was aware of what I did.
What gets me in this situation is the negativity this poor woman is carrying with her to feel compelled to, under her breath, make such comments. How sad that she feels first that she has to notice other people's indiscretions (which I often do myself, and it's sad - because we are NOT all perfect ALL of the time), but how sad to have that much hate in you to have to say it out loud towards, but not TO the person you are aiming your negativity at.
Now, for this morning, I have to try really hard not to let that negativity drag me down into that anxiety spiral that I can end up in. If I do end up there, I'll likely have to take a pill. I hope not, but I'm aware of my patterns.
More and more frequently, I've been wondering if my anxiety and depression are either exacerbated or caused but an empathic ability to feel other people's emotions. It is something I'm starting to think is the case and that I should look into. I do often know what other people are feeling, even if they don't. And I find myself feeling emotions that are not my own - or at least don't seem to come from my experience. So I'll continue looking into that.
For now I can just hope that this woman isn't as hard on herself as she is on total strangers - although I suspect she is. And I hope she finds her way beyond that habit, because it will damage her beyond repair. And it will affect every person she comes in contact with. Oh how we can hurt others.
P.S. Then I log onto Facebook and find these (synchronicity!!). Literally within the first 10 posts, these are there: