The Other’s View

It was Tuesday, 5 days after my surgery, and I was back at work. My wife helped me cut an old t-shirt up the side so that we could tuck it under my sling. The top two buttons of my overshirt were the only two that could be buttoned, as the rest had to dangle over my sling. I felt ridiculous.

Later that morning, I called the surgical center and asked whether or not I could take the sling off in order to dress myself. I was happy to get the OK, so I spent some time in the bathroom taking the sling off for the first time since surgery and putting a shirt on.

Then, I put the sling back on and returned to work, no longer having to feel as if I looked ridiculous.

Something interesting happened when I got back into our shared workspace. For the rest of the day, I took note that none of my colleagues had noticed the change. It was as if nothing happened.

How many things in our lives do we worry so much about, that others do not even notice or observe?

Then it struck me! Even if a colleague or two had noticed I no longer had a shirt dangling over my sling, they wouldn’t have given two shits. I let myself get consumed by something that doesn’t matter, and wondered how much time I waste self-absorbed like that, fretting over the most pointless stuff.

Since then, when I think about it, I try and observe others and if there is something about them that I would worry over. Sometimes there is, and I think something like, “that would bother me if I had a stain like that on my shirt. But I could care less that it is on his.” I doubt anyone else cares, either.

Fun fact: using this power of observation, I observed quite the anomoly late last week. In a meeting with 4 other people, I noticed I was the only one right handed. Everyone else was left!