Thursday, November 20, 2008

One-Two Punch

I am a fighter. It’s in my blood. My dad is a fighter, too. He once told his boss—to her face—that he didn’t like her. I think it made her respect him more.

Through all my years of fighting for what I believe in—whether it’s that my curfew should be extended to 1:00 or that global warming does exist or that George W. Bush should not be allowed within 100 yards of the White House—I’ve discovered that the people I put up my dukes most with are the people who listen.

I still have a lot of the same friends I grew up with, and I’ve learned over the years that there are a lot of fights just not worth having with them. We all have areas in which we refuse to budge. I know whose heels are dug in, and I just won’t fight as hard or as often with the people whose feet are buried.

But the ones who show flexibility…those are the ones I will battle with until the end. Because I’ve watched them see my side in the past. I’ve watched that light of understanding flicker in their eye. I know that if I explain and argue and point out facts or inconsistencies, these people will digest what I’ve presented and possibly change their minds.

So it is virtually impossible for me to quiet the fighter when it comes to this group. Many of them, I’m sure, wish they could be part of the other group. The folks I leave alone. To that, I say, it’s your own fault for being open-minded enough to listen to me in the past. I wish I could put down my sword and take off my armor, but I cannot do that when I know at some point, you may pick up your own sword and begin fighting by my side.

11 comments:

charlotteharris said...

we can learn so much from arguing opposing points of view. i definitely value my friends with differing opinions, because sometimes my mind is changed for the better too.

Lara Watkins said...

Nicely written. I love the fighter in you, it's one of your best qualities!

Nilsa said...

I've always been one to play devil's advocate. I think it's relatively easy to explore both sides, so long as you do it sensibly. I'm all for asking questions that pull for the other side ... it's called opening up a dialogue. I think we'd get along just fine.

brookem said...

i think a good heated discussion can be really ... enlightening. im always open for talking out/hearing out both sides.

Wow, that was awkward said...

We'd be great friends IRL.

Alysha said...

I just caught up, so I want to say "Happy Anniversary", so glad you had a great time in St. Louis, of course they loved you! You are fabulous! And finally keep the fighter side of you alive. Its important to stick up for what you believe in, just remember to keep the love at teh end.

justrun said...

Right on. Knowing who you can argue with and who's worth arguing with has to be one of the most valuable lessons we can learn.

Big Sister said...

Sometimes the people you may choose to do battle with, feel just as passionatley about their stance, and maybe they hope you will put your sword down, and respect their side. It's not always about winning, if you hurt people during the battle.

geekhiker said...

Is that why you debate me so intensely in our e-mails? Interesting...

Michael C said...

That's a very insightful self examination. I've found as I've gotten older that I don't fight for much of anything like I used to. Keep fighting when you feel strongly enough - it's very noble.

varietyisthespice said...

One of the big lessons I've learned as I get older is choosing my battles. I used to just fight all of them, but after awhile, it's just exhausting, isn't it? You're right about arguing with those that will eventually budge. I'm definitely the same way! The fighter in you is what makes you stand up strong.