I wasn’t planning on posting this early in the week, but Y’ALL I CAN’T KEEP MY MOUTH SHUT THIS TIME.
One of my few pet peeves: When people use their title to demand special treatment, when people act like they are entitled to something more than everyone else.
I got to work this morning and noticed that almost all of the closest parking spots in the employee parking were EMPTY. The back row, however, was full. So when I came in, I found out that some providers (obviously not me since I was clueless) had complained that the front row was supposed to be “physicians only”. Who made that rule?
You know who I respect? A humble leader. A leader who has a servant’s heart and thinks of others first. A leader who doesn’t elevate himself or herself above those in a culturally-defined “lesser” position.
But Kristin, I worked hard to get where I am. I sacrificed a lot of money, time, sleep, and brain power to get the title I have today. You don’t get it. My response: Yes, I GET it. You did, and no one is denying that. I fully respect what you did, what you do, and how much you will do to help the people in this community. Do you really need to demand a closer parking spot at an outpatient facility where there should never be a reason for you to have to rush inside? You already get more money, better benefits, one extra day off each week, more vacation time, free lunches, free continuing education trips to Hawaii, and a resume that could land you almost any job you want.
You gotta understand something: I am one of those people. I worked my tail off to get my Master’s by age 22.
But I also recognize that I had some advantages from the start that paved the way. I had a dad who made every life event into a lesson; seriously, I learned about fractions every time we ate pizza. I had a mom who was able to drive me to any extracurricular activity I wanted to be a part of. I had a teacher who encouraged me to win the county spelling bee and excel on my writing portfolio. I had a grandfather who was willing to help me pay for Vanderbilt so I could get a strong education. Obviously, I had to put in a lot of time and hard work to achieve what I did, but my environment was one that was void of many of the obstacles that the majority of people face.
After spending several years in the reality check called LIFE, I have witnessed and been actively engaged with people who are struggling to get where they want to be. They are caring for their own kids, stepkids, foster kids, cousin’s kids, parents, and pets. They are leaving their full time day jobs (which they do for insurance since they barely make enough to buy groceries after taxes are taken out) to attend school for 3 hours and getting home right before their kids go to bed which leaves them feeling sad and guilty. They stay up until midnight because they have to do a couple loads of laundry and homework. They clean houses on the weekends to put aside enough money to keep their kids in daycare. Honestly, y’all, if this was me, I think I would give up on my goal. Of course, one could argue that maybe their goal isn’t worth it, that it would be easier, or maybe that they should, stay home. Regardless, I am not one to make that call on someone’s life. I say, if you feel that passionate about something you are working toward and feel like you’re doing it for the right reason, GO FOR IT! YOLO. But in the mean time, I see your pain and fatigue. I feel your struggle.
So dear doctor, don’t tell me I don’t get it.
Y’all have to excuse the firecracker coming out of me. Feels like “righteous anger”. It’s the same feeling I got when a lady at church told me she couldn’t believe “those kids” were still allowed in the sanctuary because they were a little unruly and that “someone should do something about that for those of us who are trying to enjoy the service.” I ABOUT CAME OUT OF MY PEW. Don’t TELL me you deserve to be here more than them because you are sitting perfectly still with a solemn look, perfect makeup, and an unwrinkled suit. LET ME INTRODUCE YOU TO MY JESUS.
Calm down, sister. Jesus probably doesn’t want you to have a stroke today.
But people don’t get Jesus. That’s what was so beautiful about him. He, “being in the very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage.” (Philippians 2:6) I mean, God came down in the form of a baby who had no home, no fancy clothes, no one cooking for him or waiting on him. He never even asked for any of these things. His focus was a message of love and truth. If that doesn’t define “walk humbly” I don’t know what would.
Jesus noticed one time at a dinner table that the people were trying to sit near the head of the table. He said, “take the lowest place at the foot of the table. Then when your host sees you, he will come and say, ‘Friend, we have a better place for you!’ Then you will be honored in front of all the other guests. For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”
I get it that you earned the spot at the front of the parking lot. But I respect you if, despite your “title”, you choose to live like you don’t even have that “title”. I respect you if you give your spot to the elderly lady whose hips are already hurting at 8 AM, or to the pregnant lady who will be on her feet all day and could benefit from fewer steps. I respect you if you don’t use your power for the sake of using your power.
I’m gonna tell my sister and brother-in-law to move out of the pulpit today. This nurse practitioner has got a message. Just kidding, you two earned that position, so maybe I will just stick to this trying-to-love-mercy-and-walk-humbly blog.
(I can’t end without making sure you know that I am totally kidding in the last paragraph. My sister and brother-in-law (both ministers) are INCREDIBLE example of humble servant leaders and they know how much love and respect I have for both of them. I wish more leaders were like them.)