Today I had my feelings hurt. Today was a crappy day.
I left to run an errand at lunch and saw a blind man tapping his cane against the sidewalk. He wasn't near anything. No crosswalk. No mailbox. No entrance anywhere. Clearly he was lost. People were passing him by left and right, looking at him, but not helping. I approached him and and asked if he was looking for the crosswalk. "I'm just trying not to obstruct the crosswalk," he said, laughing uncomfortably. I felt something drop in my stomach - the crosswalk was at least 100 feet away. So I told him. "The crosswalk is to your left. About 100 feet." He thanked me and seemed uncomfortable, so I left. But I couldn't stop looking over my shoulder. He wasn't moving. I turned the corner. Why didn't I just grab his arm and bring him to the crosswalk? This is what I kept asking myself. But I felt awkward. He didn't seem like he wanted any more of my help. Maybe he was scared because he was lost. I of all people should know what it's like to feel scared so much so that you're frozen and can't react.
So that was on my mind as I walked back to my office. I ascended the steps to the revolving door of my building, where a man wearing a white cap with print was exiting. He had earphones in but I was the only person around. As he passed me I smiled as if to say, "Good afternoon," when I heard him say, "She thinks she's attractive, but she's just plain ugly." I kept walking, knowing full well he was talking about me, before I turned to look at him. But his back was facing me as he continued to walk and mumble about how I was ugly.
I know I shouldn't take it personally because clearly this guy was a nut job. But how could I not take it personally? When someone tells you that you are ugly, it stings.
So my question, as I asked at the top, why do people say hurtful things to someone who they don't even know? What was it about me that made that man feel the need to insult? Was he a little off his rocker? Just got the urge to be mean? Why would I get offended, you ask, by a perfect stranger? I wish I could say that it didn't' bother me, but it did. Mostly his comment made me sad and made me wonder what goes on in a person's mind sometimes. It makes me sad that people can be so negative and callous. I'm not looking for compliments, I'm not. I just don't like being talked to like a piece of garbage by a complete stranger - by anyone for that matter - who does?
Sorry that I'm not my usual positive self tonight. I just feel sad and discouraged. I hope that tomorrow will be a better day....