Marshmallow Covered Titanium

Something that I’m working on:

It has been brought to my attention that my desire to be a pleasant companion, and to make space for the foibles of others, can be interpreted as deceptive. This is a problem, since I do not wish to deceive anyone. I try to be straightforward… and kind. I also tend to be silent when perhaps I should speak. It’s so hard to know when to speak and when to be silent!

I always wanted to be a lady, growing up. And I emulated many of the mannerisms of my grandmother, who was a Southern lady. She was very often silent when she found something that vexed her that she didn’t feel right dealing with in full. Now, push her? Forget about it. You’d find out that that sweet voice covered stubbornness that wouldn’t shame a mule. But the ladylike restraint of self, covering with polite lies… You know, I really DON’T think her favorite piece of chicken was the back! But when everyone sat to dinner and that was the only bit left… guess what she ate? And made much of, too.

Old-school manners. You can read the same sort of thing in the Little House books, with Ma Ingalls. Even Pa Ingalls did it – when the winter of famine came, praising the “pure” taste of potato with nothing but salt to bring out the flavor. No one *really* thought that he wouldn’t rather have a proper meal or butter on his potato…

I think it’s just too old-school. That sort of thing used to be taken for granted as good manners, not truth. We’ll all put ourselves out of our comfort zones for the comfort of those around us, particularly our guests, and there’s a subtle game played where you always, always offer your best to those around you. Does anyone remember how rude it was to reach for the biggest piece of *anything*? And that you ignored poor behavior on the part of a guest unless it was extreme, only remembering not to invite them back? I’m not going to confront you because you displease me! I’m not in authority over you! You’ll lose my trust, or the pleasure of my company. If you regard those things lightly… well. I probably don’t want to associate with you.

Now people expect you to advocate for yourself. I don’t do that particularly well. I can set limits, but I strongly prefer to wallpaper my titanium backbone with plenty of marshmallow so the people around me are comfortable. Make no mistake, being covered in candy doesn’t mean that my backbone is made of caramel instead of metal! But how do I communicate this???

This really is the real me. The marshmallow is as “me” as is the titanium. I don’t like it when people around me are uncomfortable or angry or sad. I have a strong need to ameliorate those emotions. Asking me to cause them is asking quite a lot. I like to go deep with people. I like to know the real them. I find that making people comfortable rather than challenging them tends to set up a better environment to go deep. People tend to feel safe with me.

I’m an old-fashioned girl in a modern world – and I’m not speaking the same language.

Help!

(Bloglink to “How to be a lady” over at TC: http://traditionalchristianity.wordpress.com/2013/07/12/how-to-be-a-lady/)

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16 thoughts on “Marshmallow Covered Titanium

  1. magistratrium

    I tend to be the same way. If I’m too confrontational from the first, people don’t ever get to a point of comfort and trust so that I can truly confront them in love.

    Reply
    1. hearthie Post author

      Exactly! I learned how to fluff up the marshmallow when the titanium scared people off (around 13ish). Now it’s part of who I am.

      Reply
  2. Sis

    I like this Hearthie, Christ tells us to sacrifice ourselves to love others, but so many others see this as a sign of weakness instead of strength. They’re wrong! They’re all wrong, fight formthe important things and let everything else go…like chicken.

    Reply
  3. userdand

    Christ had numerous opportunities and certainly the authority to be direct and without mercy. On all but a few occasions, metaphor or example was the tool used instead. It would seem to me your choice of behavior places you in good company.

    Reply
      1. userdand

        Are we drinking our tea and behaving tonight, or are you and Sis getting into trouble?

      2. hearthie Post author

        I am reattaching the waistband on my new skirt after it stretched out and my husband yanked it down to my bellybutton and told me to go fix it before he pulled it completely off – without unbuttoning it. :p

        Sis and I live far too far away from one another, more’s the pity. 🙂

      3. userdand

        My kinda guy! Did he stretch it out constantly pulling at it just because he likes looking your belly button? Why does this sound like an empire waist dress instead of a skirt. I am trying to picture a skirt with a waistline much above the navel and can’t get an good mental picture. One of those things where you have to see it on because it doesn’t sell on the hanger perhaps.

      4. hearthie Post author

        TBL has a picture, worn as I’ll wear it. Before the taking-in process, but I doubt there will be much difference that you’ll see the way I’ve styled it. This stuff is really, really stretchy. Gotta remember to stay away from fabric like this in the future. Bother!

      5. userdand

        Kind of like working with jersey knit fabric. Way too challenging. How much in the bust, waist and hips is enough and not too much or too little. Can pretty much an educated guessing game I suppose.

      6. userdand

        Okay. Took a look but too painful to comment on Blogger. I like it and see why you wanted to go on the diag. Who would have thought a weave would have had that much stretch, and what do you mean, “argue?” By the way. Sis made trouble. She went for a run tonight but then came home and ate four pieces of toast. Poor baby.

    1. userdand

      It probably took just as much effort, if not more with the cheap fabric and you have less to show for it. Probably over no more than $4 difference too. Don’t you just hate that?

      Reply
      1. hearthie Post author

        Weeeeellll since the pattern’s a fabric pig, and this fabric didn’t cost me more than $10, even for this much yardage… actually it’s a good bit cheaper. But yes. I’ve learned my lesson. And I prefer to have my clothing last longer than a season.

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