My values # 3 Dependable

“When the night has come
And the land is dark
And the moon is the only light we’ll see
No I won’t be afraid, no I won’t be afraid
Just as long as you stand, stand by me”    Ben E. King

I have always considered myself to be reliable, dependable and trustworthy.

Through the turmoil of my life being turned upside down by my husband leaving me, my being reliable on everyday issues was truly tested. Being punctual, answering emails, paying bills on time, returning phone calls, having a neat and tidy house, keeping appointments, remembering birthdays ……. these slipped way down on my list of priorities as I battled with my grief. As I slowly emerged from the haze, however, some of the issues continued. It was as if I was questioning the merit of placing such importance on what I now deemed ‘trivial’ issues. It was as if I was saying to myself  – ‘You have lost trust, joy, your companion, your direction in life, your dreams for the future, your life’s work and your financial security. What does it matter if you are late? Who cares if you do not sweep the kitchen floor? Does it really matter if this year no-one gets Christmas cards?’ At the same time, I was concerned that I was losing part of myself, part of who I had been, part of my character and reputation.

Then I thought more in depth about the meaning of being reliable, trustworthy and dependable.

To me, being reliable is acting in a consistent way – predictably on time, neat, well-groomed, always keeping appointments – with the emphasis being on consistency rather than any particular admirable human trait. A car can be reliable. Someone may be reliable without necessarily being trustworthy or dependable.

A trustworthy person, on the other hand, will always keep confidences, will remain loyal and faithful and will keep promises. They will not lie, cheat, steal, or ever behave in an unscrupulous manner. They will always be honest and truthful.

Being dependable means showing up without being asked or reminded. You will just be there. You show up for work, social gatherings, your children’s events, your mother’s birthday. You will always do the right thing. A dependable person is reliable in mood and temperament. Not all over you one minute with affection and warmth; then cold, aloof and withdrawn the next. You know where you stand with them. A dependable person will express their emotions in a mature and healthy way, never belittle anyone, or gossip in an unkindly manner. A dependable person is a pillar of strength, someone others may lean on at a time of need. They listen with understanding to others’ concerns. They support others in grief. A dependable person does not collapse in a crisis. They understand that they cannot control events but they can alter their own responses to events. Where a situation may lead others into panic or disorder; they remain calm. When times get tough, they would never cut and run. A dependable person is unfaltering like a solid rock in their values and principles; steadfast in their beliefs. They will stand up and do what is right. They do not let circumstances dictate their behaviour. Instead their values, ethics, morals and sense of purpose drives them.

The more I thought about it, the more I realised that I was still living by these values. My reliability may have slipped on some trivial matters, but I have remained reliable “when it counts”. With absolute certainty I have remained trustworthy and above all I have remained dependable. I have always been and will always be there for my children, my family, my friends, my neighbours and my work colleagues. If any one of my loved ones was hurt or in crisis, I would drop everything and go to them as I have always done. I am still that “pillar of strength” – someone others may lean on at a time of need. Whilst taking much courage at times, I remain dependably calm and level-headed. I am unwavering in my core beliefs. My home remains a sanctuary of peace, comfort and relaxation.

I remain a rock of strength.

11 thoughts on “My values # 3 Dependable

  1. What a beautiful post Elizabeth — and, you turn up here, sharing your strength, encouragement, your truth and light — and that is also an indication of who you are.

    PS — the lines you quote at the top — I know when you look online that they show as attributed to John Lennon but they were actually written by Ben E. King. He released Stand by Me in 1961 and it became his first big hit. 🙂 I’m posting a link of a rendition of it that we created at the shelter where I used to work — clients and area musicians came together in an amazing project and then, at the concert where we released the recording — Ben E. King happened to be in town and came and sang it with everyone — it was amazing! 🙂

    • Thanks. I have changed the credit on the post to Ben E King. Thanks also for the link to this version of ‘stand by me’. It must have been great to have actually had Ben E King there at the time. What a fantastic inspiring rendition that is and what fantastic work you have all done at the shelter! Truly inspirational. 🙂

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  3. Elizabeth I love this and all your other posts. It is the difficult things that test our character and you seem to have remained true. What a beautiful testimony to the strength of the human spirit!

    • Thanks Diana. I am currently going through a difficult stage of this difficult life-change – hence my posts have dropped down to one a week as I have become fairly exhausted. Focussing on the positives and the things that I have NOT lost (one being my own character) keeps me going. Sometimes I crave having a day-to-day ‘normalcy’ where concerns over getting to an appointment on time or keeping the house tidy were my only issues.
      Being the eternal optimist, I know that the glass is still half full and that time will (eventually) come again!

      Thanks for always stopping by. It means a lot to me and I am so grateful to you for your kind words.

  4. Louise was right on track, as usual, in directing us to your post this morning. It is strong, and solid, and a wonderful reminder of what really is important. When life throws us tremendous blows, as it so often seems to do, it can be really hard to find our way again, to get back to who we are and want to be. Thank you for reminding me of what matters, and what I want to take care to be. I am also going to send this link to my daughter, who just like you is trying to find order in her now single life. Thank you!

  5. Thanks Diana. I am currently going through a difficult stage of this difficult life-change – hence my posts have dropped down to one a week as I have become fairly exhausted. Focussing on the positives and the things that I have NOT lost (one being my own character) keeps me going. Sometimes I crave having a day-to-day ‘normalcy’ where concerns over getting to an appointment on time or keeping the house tidy were my only issues.
    Being the eternal optimist, I know that the glass is still half full and that time will (eventually) come again!

    Thanks for always stopping by. It means a lot to me and I am so grateful to you for your kind words.

  6. Do you know what an inspiration it is to come over here and read these words you have just written! To never allow another to degrade and define us is one of the truest mark of courage I know Elizabeth. I am so sorry that you had to go through this difficult journey but I am sharing in your joy and celebrating the person that you are and continue to bloom in spite of it. You ARE a rock and a pillar of strength. I am honoured to know your beautiful soul. With love, Sharon

    • Thanks. It means a lot to me that others have taken the time to read my post, and listen to my message. Thanks for your kind words of encoragement. Yes, I am determined to survive despite these setbacks and become a better person in the process. Have a good weekend 🙂

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