Cup of Sunshine

As some of you know, my dear husband, our two youngest kiddos, and I recently moved into an RV…full-time.

 

Yep, that’s right!

 

We now live in a home with a foundation of big rig tires and a living room fully equipped with a steering wheel.

 

This decision was super-fast and a little impulsive just like almost all our decisions. We think everything is a good idea! We see an adventure and we leap. This is us. My hubby lobbed the idea and in less than a month we were proud (and a little stunned) owners of a motorhome.

 

Sooooo many times after taking this leap I thought, “What have we done?!” So, I threw myself into research. I watched ALL the YouTube channels. I read blog after blog, and I listened to podcasts incessantly. RV life is an entirely different world and I was determined to be prepared!

 

All the preparation was fun, but some was purely entertainment. My sister recommended I watch the Robin Williams movie, RV. I thought I had seen every Williams movie, but somehow this one was never on my radar. So, I added it to the queue for family movie night.

 

My kids LOVED it! My hubby began to have reservations about our new lifestyle. And I gleaned a friendship message!

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The Munro’s embarked on their very first RV vacation. Along their journey, they repeatedly and regretfully crossed paths with an unusually happy family, The Gornicke’s. After being ditched a few times, The Gornicke’s eventually realized The Munro’s were just not that into them. Jeff Daniel’s character, Travis, the father in the Gornicke family, turns to his wife and says, “We ain’t everybody’s cup of sunshine.”

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I love his attitude! He is so very right! We can’t be everyone’s favorite!

 

I was way too old when I finally learned that lesson. I am an idealist. Most of my life I believed I could be everyone’s best friend and I tried so hard! When others did not agree, I was crushed. I questioned myself and wondered why. With age, I’ve learned that Travis Gornicke was right! We may be a perfect ray of sunshine, but others might enjoy a different type of weather…and that is okay!

 

But that is not the greatest lesson gleaned from the movie. The Gornicke’s continued to show kindness and generosity even after they had been rejected. In the end, The Monro’s survived their trip because of The Gornicke’s.

 

The Gornicke’s didn’t let The Monro’s change them. They remained kind, generous, fun-loving, and sunshiny people. They didn’t have to be accepted to be friendly.

 

Rejection doesn’t have to change who we are.

 

Rejection only alters our expectations of the one doing the rejecting. (Even then, we ought to hold on loosely to our perceptions of people.) As the Gornicke’s experienced, sometimes the ones resistant to friendship come around.

 

Other times, we may need to move on. However, I believe we often bail too quickly.  So, how do we hang in there when we aren’t appreciated? How do we keep showing up with our generosity and kindness when we’ve been ditched, ignored, shamed, and labeled?

 

Here are three quick thoughts on that!

 

  • Dig Deep and Remember… We may not always have been the sunshiny selves we are today. We may have cast the first stone or pointed our finger before. So, be patient with the haters. We’ve been haters too.
  • It’s Not About You… You’ve heard it before. It’s worth saying again. Everyone is fighting a battle you know nothing about. Sometimes their resistance to you has nothing to do with you. It may have more to do with their own internal war.
  • Believe The Best… Maybe you weren’t ditched. Perhaps there is more to the story. Maybe your interpretation of things was negative and you are giving up too soon. Give your friends the benefit of the doubt! We all have a lot going on. We get distracted. We send mixed messages.

 

Now, don’t get me wrong. Sometimes in friendship you have to know when to let go. Just don’t bail too soon. They desperately need your cup of sunshine and do not even know it yet.

 

What about you? I love to hear your stories! Have you ever hung in there when you thought a friendship was going nowhere? What happened? How did it play out? Have you remained friends?