A couple of weeks ago, we took our annual trip to Ann Arbor to move our son into his campus apartment. Before we left to go back home, we ate lunch at one of our favorite restaurants. As I walked in, there were a number of people forming a line to put their name on the waiting list for a table. I was third in line when suddenly, this women pushed right in front of me. I was hot, tired and hungry; however, I wasn’t about to get into a pushing match over who got there first. I decided to just let it go.
When the pushy woman got to the front of the line, the hostess informed her that she would need to wait 10 minutes for a table. The woman moved to the side and I was now front and center. I waited for the hostess to tell us how long we would be waiting, but instead, the hostess grabbed three menus and said, “Right this way”. The woman looked shocked as she watched us get seated at our table before her. I whispered to the hostess how the woman had pushed in front of me to get seated first. She replied, “then it worked out the right way”.
“What goes around comes around”. This time the saying really held true, but how often does it turn out the other way? When I was young, my mother used to say this to me when I was disappointed with an unkind boyfriend or something that didn’t seem fair. At the time, I truly believed her but as I got older, I realized that it doesn’t always work out that way. Individuals can be downright cruel and ruthless and they don’t necessarily get what’s coming to them in the end. It’s just a reality of life. It doesn’t seem fair, but it happens nevertheless.
My son has a job where he gets commissioned on what he sells daily. The employees are pressured to meet their sales numbers on a regular basis. He discovered quickly that the reason some of the worker’s were doing so much better than him was because they were adding items to the customer’s bills without informing them of the charge. Management routinely looked the other way while this happened since everyone wanted to make their quota. My son stated that he refused to reach his number using this method— he would rather make a lot less money in a scrupulous manner. I was proud of him for making this decision although it irritated him that his honesty translated to a much smaller paycheck.
Last week he called to share that an employee had been fired. Apparently the District Manager made an unscheduled visit to the site and discovered 10 pre-printed client forms filled out with the extra costs already included. All it took was one client to complain to management that he had never agreed to the added fees. My son felt validated— he was rewarded for being an honest employee. What goes around comes around.
Many times in your life you will do the “right thing” and your behavior will go unnoticed. You will witness others taking part in downright ugly behavior that will appear to be rewarded. The truth is that you have a choice as to how you want to live your life. Living it with honesty and integrity will not always win you the big prize. However, when you look in the mirror at the end of the day, you’ll feel good about the person looking back at you. Not everyone can say that. And in the end, I believe what goes around, comes around.