I tried to stay calm
Restoring peace at work and in our family
My daughter works at a salon.. My sister-in-law happens to work at the same salon. She treats my daughter as if she was her own daughter. She is always trying to be “helpful” to the point that it drives my daughter crazy.
For instance, my sister-in-law will call me at home if she sees a customer waiting for my daughter in the hallway, asking if I could call her to remind her. This drives my daughter absolutely nuts, she says: “I know I have an appointment, because I’m the one that set up the appointment.”
One day my sister-in-law called for about the 10th time, because she found a customer waiting in the hallway. I hesitated to call my daughter, but I texted her. A few minutes later she called and was very upset, saying, “Mom, she does this to me all the time; she drives me nuts…” Although I was driving to an event, I tried to listen to her and yet keep my peace and not be rattled by the conversation. I felt I had to love my sister-in-law, even with her irritating habits, and seek reconciliation. By staying calm, I hoped to help my daughter do the same.
Finally we hung up. I tried to keep my peace as I arrived at the event, knowing that in the meantime my daughter was texting my sister-in-law and asking her to “please never call me again to remind me about a customer waiting.”
A short time later, my daughter called back and apologized to me for her angry outburst. She repeated that she just couldn’t handle her aunt’s unwelcome help, which in truth bordered on her being a “busybody.” Again, I tried to keep my peace, remembering that these unpleasant things happen and to have a greater love.
A few days later, I called my sister-in-law to invite her to check out a gym by my house. It was just an excuse to see if she was okay about what had happened, even though my daughter had to finally be firm with her. I was concerned that she would have hurt feelings about the whole thing, but she was fine.
Later in the evening I mentioned to my daughter that I had seen her aunt, and she said, “I know Mom, me, too. I called her to see if I could buy her lunch.” I felt that my staying calm helped my daughter to get over being upset, and we both had made an effort to love my sister-in-law, despite her being “too helpful.” In trying to live the Gospel, unity was restored all the way around — at their job and in our family as well.
— Janie Carter, Texas
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