The date is December 31st, 2017:
My best friend Christine Mucci was celebrating her birthday at 6:30am (like a crazy person) by watching the last sunrise of the year with her friends (come to think of it, it IS a pretty cool tradition [but I’ll never admit it]). I had our friends meet at my house by 6am so we could all drive together to the beach (Awkward moment: they called me to come get them because some strange woman was just sitting in front of my house [still don’t know who it was] but back to the blog). We all arrived around the same time (*lie – I was late) to the beach to watch the sun crack above the horizon. We watched the sunrise, took pictures, laughed, enjoyed the company of our friends, celebrated the birth of Christine, and went to get some breakfast at a local diner – Lester’s.
“It’s like Esther’s, with an L” –Esther, 2017
Afterwards, I said my goodbyes, drove our friends back to my house where they went their separate ways, and I collapsed into a mini coma for 3 hours (*lie – 5 hours). I then started working on a freelance project and got ready for a gig that a friend of the family offered me (I accepted to work on a holiday only because I am poor and it sounded like a good idea at the time [*lie – a friend was peer pressuring me to do it for the money]).
*This was the very moment that David regretted accepting that job.
I arrived at the home to assist a family (strangers/ clients) with their NYE party. I was greeted at the door by the hostess and was put to work doing the dishes, cutting the limes, wiping down tables, etc. My job was to clean the dishes, pick up trash, and serve the guests.
(Note: this wasn’t a bad job, nor a bad family, nor a bad contractor. I went into this knowing full well what I’d be doing, but I didn’t realize how much it would ACTUALLY suck).
As I was doing so, I was thinking to myself “this isn’t so bad.” But then all the work hit me like a ton of bricks when the guests started to arrive.
None of them greeted me, acknowledged my presence, or wondered who I was. I was asked to get them wine and pick up their trash, to clean up their mess and to wash the dishes non-stop for 8 hours straight without a break or food (Note: I realize this sounds like whining and to my friends that are servers I understand this is a daily thing you do, so I’m not complaining about the work it’s the next part that I’m complaining about). The thing that really took me by surprise was the disconnect that the people had, and how easy it was to forget that this is a human picking up after you. (Note: Again, I realize I’m getting paid to do this but interactions are within our primal instinct and to be looked at as a vacuum takes a toll on you mentally. I’m just pointing things out).
*I do have to say, the little boy of the house (8) was the kindest most genuine soul I’ve seen that night. He would introduce me as he passed by to random guests as “That’s Dave, he’s awesome for cleaning up after us.” And it
After the 8 course meal (and all the trash and dishes) was over, I went into the kitchen to clean the dishes so I could at least see the ball drop. However, the hostess of the party asked for me to be outside away from the guests (to clean and break down the tables). I did so without complaint and kept working as I heard the countdown. 55…54…53…52…I took off the decorations, the table skirts, folded the tables, carried them to the garage. 5…4…3…2… and I kept working like it wasn’t even happening (for those that don’t know me, I LOVE HOLIDAY PARTIES, so this was killing me on the inside). And this started a fire within me. But I couldn’t be upset. It made me redefine my self-worth; that I don’t belong picking up after people, and I shouldn’t be treated like trash. Nor should anyone for that matter.
It made me humble and realize something: If we look past the race, the social class, the sexual orientation, the religious belief, the political views, whatever – there is still another human being on the other side of those eyes that are witnessing our actions and behaviors. I never want to get into a position where I have to feel so low again. I never want to treat another human being as a thing. I never want to treat others in a way that I wouldn’t want to be treated.
I am grateful for the opportunity to have worked that event. Beyond grateful for the tip that I received. But what I am most grateful for, is the lesson that came out of it. To be wiser in the way that I treat others. Even if it is their “job” to do something, it doesn’t mean that person should be treated any less of. I already try my best in treating others with respect, but I would like to start going above and beyond when it comes to treating people in serving positions, shoot, in any position. You never know if you are going to be that 8-year-old little boy that restores hope to humanity for someone else.
Just like that sun rising for the last time in the year I realized we are called to be lights in this world. We may go through some dark periods in our lives, but the promise we hold onto is that the sun will always rise again. So go shine on someone else, because you never know what darkness is surrounding them, and when you’re going through your own darkness – I hope someone somewhere can be your sunrise.
“God doesn’t comfort us to be comfortable. He comforts us so that we can learn to be a comfort to others.”