I have heard said . . .
crisis reveals one’s true character
. . . and I tend to agree. In fact, after the events of Sunday afternoon, I believe adding an element of crisis during any dating relationship may well make or break a relationship.
Sunday I witnessed a crisis and saw the true character of one’s Beau. Here is how the circumstances unfolded that led to the crisis.
First of all, you need to know that I am grateful to have some of Scott’s friends in my life. Spending time with these young adults helps me make deposits into my storehouse of memories – laughing about Scott’s love for practical jokes as well as sharing his compassion for others. It also makes me very aware of the stage of life he would be now, if he had not left us so very young.
A couple of weeks ago, one of his classmates made plans to come by with her
friend, whom I will call THE BEAU. THE BEAU lives out of state and was coming to town for the long 4th of July weekend. She wanted us to meet THE BEAU – someone she is quite fond of and wanted to see what we thought of him. I have seen pictures of THE BEAU online, heard about the gracious and loving ways THE BEAU treats her, and have personally witnessed the fact that she talks and texts THE BEAU day in and day out. But I really did not know THE BEAU, until this weekend.
I looked forward to the opportunity to meet THE BEAU, watching and listening for any red flags that may go up. My husband and I tried to think of questions to ask THE BEAU that would provide an opportunity for him to reveal something about himself – his values and his intentions – without sounding like future in-laws, which of course we are not (but at times we may seem like impostors).
We sat outside on the patio under the umbrellas, eating strawberries over vanilla ice cream while my friend’s seven year old daughter swam in our pool – a nice diversion that allowed us to talk mostly uninterrupted. Watching THE BEAU interact with my friend was great to see – he seemed to be patient, courteous and thoughtful. He seemed to genuinely care for her well being.
I was equally impressed when THE BEAU began interacting with my friend's daughter in the pool. He offered to toss her daughter in – you know, launch her from the edge into the pool. At first her daughter appeared a little hesitant but then decided to let THE BEAU toss her in. In a couple of minutes, her daughter was begging THE BEAU for more.
So THE BEAU gently gathered her in his arms and told her to count to three. One . . . two . . . three . . . and again she went sailing through the air and into the pool. As THE BEAU leaned to make sure she cleared the edge of the pool, THE BEAU lost his balance. With arms flailing in an attempt to reverse the forward motion, THE BEAU himself became airborne and landed in the pool! Shirt, jeans, socks, tennis shoes, watch and wallet, all under water.
When THE BEAU came up for air, his face displayed a wide grin as he laughed along with us and said, “This feels great! I haven’t been swimming in a long time.” THE BEAU tossed his wallet, shoes and socks on the deck, hung his shirt on the fence to dry, and dove back in – in his jeans! THE BEAU spent the next twenty minutes swimming and diving with my friend’s daughter.
I thought about THE BEAU’s reaction to what could have been a humiliating situation. THE BEAU knew he was there to meet us (i.e., impress us). THE BEAU could have come out of the pool and pouted, embarrassed that he had fallen in. THE BEAU could have blamed the daughter for not letting go soon enough. THE BEAU could have gotten upset that his clothes, shoes and wallet were soaked.
But THE BEAU was not undone by the crisis.
THE BEAU’s true character was revealed in this moment of crisis . . . and I, for one, approve!