Jenna started dating a new man. Like many women, she was a little frustrated with all the losers that had come along before. She thought she’d put this one to the test. She wanted to see how good he’d be to her.
So when he called her up and asked her what she wanted to do, she told him she thought he should take her on a little trip.
“Hawaii would be nice,” she said. “You get us the tickets. And find someplace nice for us to stay when we get there. I don’t want to be in a cheesy hotel.”
He had enough money in the bank. The trip, she thought, would be exquisite and luxurious. She envisioned the first-class air travel, the limos, and the home he’d rent complete with maid service and a cook.
When the day of the trip arrived, they took a taxi, not a limo, to the airport. And when she boarded the airplane, he led her back to coach. When the flight attendant came around asking if people wanted to rent movies, her boyfriend shook his head and went back to reading his book. She had to dig out the four dollars to pay for the movie.
She sat scrunched up in her seat, all the way to Hawaii. When they got there, he took her to a time-share condo. Then he drove her in the rental car to the grocery store and said, “Pick out what you want to cook.”
Throughout the vacation she spent a lot of time stewing in her head, but when they got home, she decided to give him one more chance.
So when he called her up and asked her what she wanted to do Friday night, she said she thought a movie would be nice. She hung up the phone, then dressed up and did her hair. She thought maybe he’d take her to a nice theater.
He picked her up, then drove to the nearest Blockbuster. “Go in and pick out whatever video you’d like to rent,” he said. “Do you want to watch it at your place or mine?
The moral of this story is twofold and simple. The first lesson is if you know exactly what you want, you need to spell it out clearly. The second is that it’s better not to expect people to take care of us. Even if they agree to do it, we might not like how they do the job.
While it’s nice to have people love us and do things for us, it’s better to plan on taking care of ourselves.
God, help me remember that it’s my job to take care of myself.
From the book: More Language of Letting Go
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