We all have our little pet peeves, you know, things that kinda drive you nuts. It might be an open cupboard door, or a milk jug put back in the fridge with half a swallow left in it. Maybe someone left wet towels on the floor or even worse, dirty clothes when the hamper is…right there! Honestly, these things don’t really bug me. I mean, they bother me enough that I just automatically fix them so they are a bit of a peeve I guess. For me though, the real pet peeve….labels. You know how when you buy something and it’s got this huge label identifying the company, probably has the bar code for scanning at the cash register, and it’s right there. You know. RIGHT THERE! In your face every time you look at the thing.
Those who know me have undoubtedly heard me say, “You own it now. You paid for it. There is no reason to keep that label on there. Let’s just take it off. It’s OK. It’s yours!”
I’ve been known to take shelves off of walls that had stickers on the bottom of them, or spend an hour peeling the HUGE, half worn off label from the top step of a step ladder. Sorry Barb & Nadine but really, don’t they all look much better?
I recently had an occasion where I so desperately wanted to peel a label off, two actually, and I was gently reminded that it was fine. It was fine just how it was. This travel mug came into my home last weekend and my need to peel off not one, but two labels, went into overdrive. OK, so it wasn’t my mug, but I was washing the dishes and it was in with those dishes. That gives me peeling rights doesn’t it? I mean really! Coffee is undoubtedly going to dribble down over the label, it’s going to be washed and rewashed. The label is going to start peeling and making the whole mug look worn. Wouldn’t it be so much easier just to peel the damn labels off now and have it over with?
Again I was gently reminded that, not only wasn’t it my mug, but it was just fine the way it was. The label didn’t have to come off. It wasn’t a life or death issue. It was a label. A piece of paper with glue on the back. That’s it. Just a little piece of paper.
So, I finished the dishes, dried out the travel mug, and took it to the dining room where I took these photos. I realized that this wasn’t just about label, not in this instance anyway, it was also about making adjustments. I’ve always been very independent and have lived on my own for a number of years. I’m use to doing what I want, when I want, and having things how I want them. Yet this calm voice simply said, “It’s OK, you don’t have to take that off. It can stay there,”and I listened. Yes, I rushed through washing the mug, to avoid my urge to peel, but I overcame it. I realized that not everything has to be perfect, or my kind of perfect, and I can let go of a bit of that control once in a while. I
I’m sure that mug will be in my sink again this weekend. I’m also sure the label will have started to peel. Will I resist the urge to help it along? I believe I will….the big label anyway. I don’t think he’ll notice the little one missing.