Thursday, August 30, 2012

"Someone Else"

Now that summer's over I'm getting all nostalgic about finishing work, moving out of my parents house, and going off to school again. It feels a bit like my first year of undergrad again, except now I have less hair and a much longer resume.

Today I was helping to clean out rooms that had been used all summer long. When people move out of a room after several months, there's a lot of crap left over. See, people pick up all their stuff and then there's ten random things left on the floor so they leave it for "someone else". Today I got to help be the "someone else".

I got into this thought cycle where I was mad at people for leaving all their crap behind. Then I remembered what it feels like to leave camp at the end of the summer and how exhausted you are and how you just want to get out of there. Then I felt like I shouldn't be mad anymore. Then I thought about something else until the cycle repeated. Which just got me on to thinking about how people with a lot of empathy usually end up being servants of others or just feeling guilty about not working all the time. If you can see that others are having a hard time and empathize with them, but you can also see that others are not helping because they are tired and you empathize with them, the only conclusion you end up with is that you should do something. You should be the "someone else" that people leave things to deal with.

I ended up being "someone else" a lot this summer. I'm ok with this, but I wish people would leave less stuff for "someone else".

Postscript: Someone is going to send me a snarky message after I post this about how they've been "someone else" for me, so to be proactive let me say thank you to all the people who have been "someone else" for me.