Conflict & Kindness with Lori Portka

Good Morning Lovelies, Happy Monday! I am so jazzed to share the ever-so-beautiful & lovely Lori Portka with you today! She is an amazing artist, writer & just an all-around awesome & soulful human being. The story that she is sharing with us today really hit home for me. I have been extremely conflict-avoidant all my life too, for so many reasons. Not only because of my shyness & the fear I had of the other person’s reaction but also because I genuinely dislike making anyone feel bad. I’ve put up with so much over my years out of fear & feeling like I needed general acceptance from the people in my life that I’ve let some of them walk all over me. As I matured, I gradually became stronger in letting people know when they did something that didn’t sit right with my heart, whether I interpreted wrongly or not, keeping it inside was poisonous. I am still a work in progress & this post let me realize that I am not alone. Thank you so much Lori, for being brave & sharing your story today – you always have a way of making my heart sing YES! with your art & with your words. You are so, so beautiful. Big love to all of you, xox, Amanda

art by Lori Portka

Conflict & Kindness

I felt angry toward my friend.
I told my wrath, my wrath did end.
I felt angry toward my foe.
I told him not, my wrath did grow.

William Blake

I am extremely conflict-avoidant.

I always thought that on some level, this made me very kind.

Recently, I learned otherwise.

I have a dear friend who is part of the same cooperative art gallery as me. She called me one night with what I (incorrectly) perceived were threatening questions regarding one of the co-op policies and my connection to it. While on the phone with her I felt fear, anger, frustration, and confusion. I denied all of that within me. I was nice and kind.

In the weeks that followed, I stewed with anger every time I thought about our conversation. This is not an experience I have often. I adore my friends, I love this particular friend dearly, and like I said, I am extremely conflict-avoidant. So I pushed the anger down and then was angry at myself for having any lingering anger. Madness!

But I am learning to be true and to honor my feelings. The trouble is I did not honor myself or my friend, in this case. I said nothing. And when I ran into her by accident, and it was nearly impossible for me to pretend to be the way I usually am around her. I was passive aggressive, giving her short answers and little eye contact.

“Are you mad at me?” My beautiful friend asked me with the most concerned voice.

I can still picture the expression on her face. She was me when I was little.

Oh no. Had I become my mother? My mom is super loving and a good mom to me but she does not handle anger directly. When I was younger I was constantly wondering, “Mom, are you mad at me? What did I do wrong?” I found myself trying to “fix” the problem when I didn’t even know what the problem was.

I wish I would have called my friend after we talked on the phone, once I processed my emotions. “I didn’t really love the conversation we had, but I love you. Can we talk?” That would have been kind.

Later that night, after a big lesson learned, I sat in meditation. I poured kindness over myself. It is okay, I am learning. I sent kindness to my mother. She has always loved me with her whole heart and I have always known this to be true.

And I sent kindness to my friend. She is pure light and love. Thank you, sweet friend.

Lori Portka is a full-time artist, doing what she loves, in hope of spreading a little happiness around. She is sweet and compassionate and is learning to say “no” when “yes” does not feel right and accept (and even embrace) the non-optimistic, angry, spitfire part of herself. She travels as much as possible, and loves animals with all her heart. Connect with Lori through her website and etsy.


Related Posts

If you enjoyed this, you might also enjoy these