The scene pushed my buttons

I

A crowd had gathered and I heard her before I saw her angry red face. Spittle flew from her mouth along with her words.

“They’re babies!” she yelled over and over. “Control your children! They’re babies!” (Sea lions with pups lounged on slabs of rock below. People climbed all around them.)
Why would you let your children throw rocks? What is wrong with you? They’re babies!”

Does this woman have children of her own? I wondered.

From the outskirts of the circle I saw a rotund blonde climbing up the cliff towards confrontation.

She was yelling back—something about a bird. The original self-righteous yeller refused to stop yelling long enough to listen.

Somebody in the crowd said, “Straight from the trailer park.”

My family kept moving up the coast. I’ll never know what really happened—before, or after.

My buttons were pushed on both accounts. I didn’t like the idea of children throwing rocks at sea lion families and I really didn’t like the screaming woman who was creating a scene in front of families, human and sea lion.

My challenge was to recognize the negative emotions rising inside of me and to let them go.

A little farther up the La Jolla coast we saw seal families basking on the sand of Children’s Beach. There was a rope cordoning off a large area of sand and surf, intended to give the seals some space. Wouldn’t you know a crowd of people had ducked under or stepped over and stood within feet of the seals?

Again, my buttons were pushed.

My challenge was to recognize the negative emotions rising inside of me and to let them go.

Will humanity ever change?

I don’t know.

What I can control….is me.


What pushes your buttons?

Do you mindfully choose your reactions?


What if we all lived by this idea…You are not here to fix the world. The world is here to fix you. ~Mike Johnson