It’s Shark Week y’all ~
When I was in college, I got in a car wreck and, apparently, the insurance company for the guy that ran into me – sending me to the hospital by ambulance where I got over two hundred stitches – wanted to give me some money so I would not sue them for a whole lot more money!
I was getting ready to graduate from college, get married and enter the “real world” so I did what every down-to-earth, logical girl would do. I bought scuba gear!
Not long after my husband and I were married, we decided to take a scuba diving trip with his sister and brother-in-law to Cozumel.
This was BC – Before Children – back when we both had incomes and no kids to suck our paychecks into a vortex each month. My sister-in-law booked us at her favorite hotel that she raved was a “great deal.” I should have thought twice about that since they did have kids and their paychecks were already being sucked into the vortex.
The lovely Hotel Aquilar provided us, for a mere $12/night, a mattress curved like a banana, a fan that sparked, a shower that required footwear due to the mold and a girl selling “bottled” water in a jug that we watched her fill from the faucet outside our door. The up side – we were not going to be spending much time in our room. We went to Cozumel to DIVE!
On one of our first dives, my sister-in-law motioned that she wanted me to see something. She was gesturing excitedly and pointing into a small cave. Then she gave a sign where she wobbled her two fingers on either side of her chin. Since she had been diving for years, I was excited to see what she had found. She guided me in the direction of the cave and then wobbled her two fingers on either side of her chin – excitement showing in her eyes. I swam into the cave to see the exotic creature she was so excited about and almost swam into a SHARK!
I tried not to wake the “sleeping” shark and paddled backwards in a panic. My fins were stirring up sand and my tank was clanging into the walls. I bumped into my husband who had followed me into the cave to also see the “chin wobbling” creature.
SHARK! I swam a safe distance away. My sister-in-law looked puzzled.
Once the dive was over and we were all back on the boat, I questioned her.
“What the heck is this?” I asked as I wobbled two fingers on either side of my chin.
“I wanted you to see the Nurse shark,” she innocently replied.
“Shark!? THIS is the international sign for shark,” I said as I made a fin sign on my forehead with my hand.
“But it was a Nurse shark and they have barbs on the sides of their mouths like this,” she defended as she gave me the two wobbling fingers sign again.
I shoved my hand into my forehead and said, “ SHARK! This means shark!”
“But Nurse sharks can’t hurt you,” she insisted.
“I still prefer to be alerted to sharks. All kinds of sharks. So next time, whether it’s a sleeping, harmless shark or not, always start off with “Shark!” And I made a fin sign on my forehead again.
I swam into the cave expecting a funny looking fish with wiggly things on its chin. I was not expecting a shark!
How many times do we plow ahead in life expecting one thing and then are met with another ~ because of poor communication or expectations? How many times is a text or e-mail misunderstood because the tone is missing and an expectation exists about what the person wants to communicate? How many times are our feelings hurt because our expectations were not met?
It happens all the time. We have expectations of how someone will respond – often due to our own hurts, past experiences or insecurities.
Expectations and communication can be tricky. Often, expectations cause miscommunications.
I have had to work at balancing communication with expectations.
For years, when I would say to one of my daughters, “the sky is blue” she would hear, “the sky is purple.” And vice versa when she would communicate with me. For years. So now we have expectations of how things will be communicated. Even in text messages, we hear a tone from years gone by. But we are learning to balance our communications with our expectations so that we do not have miscommunications.
Do you have trouble communicating with a certain person or type of person? Maybe expectations are coming into play.
Miscommunications. Expectations. Communications. Expectations.
Words kill, words give life; they’re either poison or
fruit – you choose. Prov. 18:21 (Msg)