A Tribe

“How’s that working for you?” my friend of 40 years laughed.

“About as well as telling kids in high school that smoking isn’t good for you,” I replied. We laughed together, remembering that time.

People want to be told to wear a mask about as readily as anyone wants to know the dangers of smoking as they inhale.

It comes across as arrogant, even though I extended both out of gross naïveté. If only they knew! Of course, they would do better!

NO. They all ready know. They make their own choices.

It’s great to be reminded of who I am and what I have control over – only me.

On another note, speaking up does help define yourself. People have avoided me and pull their masks up around me. Not a bad thing in this time of Covid-19. I admit my approach probably hurt some relationships and that I regret. It also clearly shows who they are.

At the same time, others have come out of the woodwork to help.

As my favorite theologian Mr. Rogers said referring to a crisis. “Look for the helpers.”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-LGHtc_D328

Sometimes, they show up without looking. I had two people come out of the woodwork (and totally different departments) to assist me loading large items. Both have more than 20 years experience and they told me doing it alone is difficult. (Hell, I know!) But it is affirming. I am so grateful for them and told them as much.

I needed assistance finding an item, so I approached another gentleman. He walked me to the area to find what I needed and en-route said, “I’m glad you asked me, Cat.” Really?

“Yes! There are a lot of mean-spirited people here. I just don’t understand that,” he went on. Wow. I am not alone in this quagmire. There are kind-hearted people in this factory.

Guess what? I reminded the friend from junior high, I wouldn’t have found you if I hadn’t spoken my truth 40+ years ago. It defined me and it brought us together, a friendship that has lasted over thousands of miles and quite a few years. Definitely better than most.

Oh, I have made myself a tribe
out of my true affections,
and my tribe is scattered!


I have many friends to thank, some in the area, some on the West Coast and some in the Midwest who gave me honest feedback. Keep the focus on you, the only thing you can control. Let the rest go.

Thank you to my tribe for reading and responding with honesty. I look forward to hearing from you. All.

Love out!

By Catstrav

Reindeer handler. NDT tech. Mother of four. Aspiring astronaut.

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