Close up Hands Tea x

Sit a bit and hear some observational stories I’ve been steeping.

Do as I say, not as I do.

Growing up, there were plenty of times I was told, “Do as I say!” A phrase usually blurted out in the heat of the moment by adults who had neither the time nor patience to elaborate why, they just wanted it (whatever “it” was) done and done now… no questions asked.  Many times I believe it was also uttered with the unspoken understanding that I was not to follow in their footsteps.  A “Do as I say, not as I do!” decree, less a discipline issue, and more of a plea that I not make their same mistakes.

Then again, there are your plain ol’ garden variety hypocrites, ones that usually hold court from a loftier realm than the rest, with their “Do as I say, not as I do!” lives.

You’ve seen them.  Politicians, celebrities and religious figures that espouse family values and moral decency who smile for the camera with their “Do as I say!” twinkle in their eye, until their unsavory private peccadilloes are ultimately revealed to the masses, such as: People who claim to have gone green but fly about leaving terribly muddy carbon footprints; People who support movements like Rock the Vote, then don’t vote themselves (maybe not even registering); People who lead others to follow a particular dieting, vitamin or exercise regime for profit then don’t practice what they preach; People who do a gigantic sparkling dog & pony show in the name of all things moral in the public eye, yet live their private lives however they darn well please, figuring nobody will ever know.  It is sad when they are discovered to be “Do as I say, not as I do!” people, to leave their disciples weeping once they discover that their heroes have feet of clay, with kingdoms partly strong and partly broken, while others waggle their naughty-naughty finger at them.

Sure, it’s oh, so easy to point out from our Monday Morning Quarterback Barcaloungers, but it’s not so easy to walk in those uber high morality heels methinks. 

At some point in my maturation process it became important to me to be a woman of my word and actions.  I might be a lot of things (sassy, snarky, loud and clumsy… to name but a few) but I feel it is extremely crucial that I not be a “Do as I say, not as I do” woman.  I’d like to be more than just a character — I want to be a person of character.  I want to live a life of honor and honesty, and only partly because living any other way is a high maintenance gig that I couldn’t keep up with (speaking from early life experience, once telling another kid the whopper of the “I’m a twin” lie). If you don’t tell the truth, the details one has to keep track of are draining.

But trying to walk the walk and talk the talk of a person of character is rough, taking years and often involving plentiful tears.  It isn’t always easy to toe the line of Doing What’s Right.  For me, it is a daily task akin to Sisyphus rolling that rock uphill: Might not be getting anywhere, but ya still have to do it.  Strange as it may sound to some, I want those that love me to love me for all the right reasons, honor being one of them.  So, I try to live my life as more of a “Do as I do” human being (especially for my kids), in a manner that brings no shame or humiliation my way or in the path of those I love. 

Except for the occasional face plant moment where I say something stupid or trip on my own two feet.  When that happens, it does sort of bring the “Do as I say, not as I do!” ruling to a whole other level, don’t you think?  Hey, kids!  You don’t want to be this!

Hmm.  Sort of makes me wonder if this is the message Charlie Sheen’s been going for all along. 


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