When They Go Low, We Go High

At this point, most people will recognize that quote as part of the speech Michelle Obama gave at the Democratic convention to endorse Hillary Clinton in 2016. While I am pretty level when it comes to how I feel about Mrs. Obama, that quote as always meant something to me. It is a reminder of how I have had to live my life almost every day as an adult. That while some days I want to lose the ever-loving mind that I can’t, that… I shouldn’t because that is what would be expected of me. Today, my husband reminded me of that. The funny part is he actually said the words while I was huffing through the kitchen pissed off.

I know what the quote means to me, but before I sat down to actually write it out I figure I would do a Google search to see what it actually means.

“‘Going high’ doesn’t mean you don’t feel the hurt, or you’re not entitled to an emotion,” she explained. “It means that your response has to reflect the solution. It shouldn’t come from a place of anger or vengefulness. Barack and I had to figure that out. Anger may feel good in the moment, but it’s not going to move the ball forward.”

Michelle Obama

As I write this, I am pretty annoyed and pissed off. Not upset. But definitely angry. I am someone who believes in treating people the way you want to be treated. It is a pretty simple way to go about life – I think. I try not to shit on people because I myself do not want to be shit on. At this point in my life, I consider myself an adult. A responsible, adult. I take responsibility for my actions and my mishaps. Time and time again though I am reminded of how many people who do not live their lives that way. I’m sure they T H I N K they do.

I was in the midst of sending out a pretty straight forward text message to someone who for the umpteenth time pushed my button. And to sound like a complete child, it’s not fucking fair! Why do they get to act a certain way but I always, always, always, have to take the high ground. It is actually exhausting. Before sending the text though I did send an email that probably should have waited until my cooler head prevailed, but I didn’t because I am an emotional person. And honestlys I am just tired of the bullshit.

Prior to my husband telling me to go high when they go low, he told me the text message I was so wanting to send was not really appropriate.

I had my fit then read Mrs Obama’s explanation of her quote. Which means I can be angry and my anger is justified. And because of that my response to them has to be justified. While it would have felt good to send that message – to give a piece of my mind. For someone to know I am not an idiot, I see what you are doing. But sending that message would not have helped the situation and now that I have calmed down I see that.

The moral to the story is to take a deep breath before responding to anyone, anything. My father has always told me this also – never respond or make a decision while experiencing any intense emotions. Sometimes I forget. Sometimes I let my emotions get the best of me. Sometimes there are people that just bring the mean out of me and then they are surprised to see it.

Think before you send. And remember that just because someone treats you like a POS does not mean you should return the favor. Go high. Be better.


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