WHEN A NUISANCE BECOMES A BLESSING Savannah Dee

Have you ever been annoyed or frustrated with someone, only to realize later that this person was just trying to do something nice for you? If so, you'll love this great story by Savannah Dee, in our new book about the power of gratitude. Savannah writes about how something initially irritating to her became a sweet reminder of how fortunate she was. In her story, "Two Seconds on the Microwave," she shares:
I have a touch of obsessive-compulsive disorder. OK, perhaps it's more than a touch. I can be plain old neurotic. When I use the microwave at work and the person before me has not cleared it, leaving 45, 10 or even just three seconds on the timer, it annoys me. It's a silly thing really, but it's inconvenient that I have to push "Reset" prior to entering my desired amount of time. Besides, it's the principle of the thing: It should be cleared.
When the same thing started happening at home, I was annoyed. My boyfriend John stops by to use my kitchen during his lunch break since he works right by my apartment building. A few weeks ago I was about to put a bowl of soup in the microwave when I noticed there was a "2" on the screen indicating it had not been cleared after John used it at lunch.
Didn't he know these little things bothered me? I let it go and forgot about it until a day or two later when I noticed a "1" left on the screen. Day after day there would be time left on my microwave. It wasn't a big enough deal to focus on it more than a couple of seconds, and I honestly forgot about it quite quickly, but I still experienced a moment of "Ugh! Men!" each time I discovered the microwave timer had not been cleared. Why was John doing this to me? Was he trying to push my buttons? Then the other day, I received my answer.
John came over in the evening to have dinner with me. I was about to place a bowl of vegetables in the microwave, when once again I noticed the "2" and finally had my opportunity to give him grief about his new bad habit. With what I hoped was a lighthearted smile, I said: "Hey! What's with you leaving time on the microwave all of a sudden and not clearing it when you're done? Are you trying to drive me crazy?" I wanted to use a playful, fun tone while also letting him know I found his new routine irritating.
John's brow furrowed and he looked confused. And then he explained: "If I press stop before the time is up, the microwave only beeps once instead of three times. I don't want to wake you." I had recently begun working the night shift and sleeping during the day. While John was making his lunch in the kitchen, I was asleep in my bedroom at the other end of the apartment.
I felt my face redden with embarrassment and for a moment, I was speechless. Humbled, I walked over to where he was standing and wrapped my arms around him. I gave him a kiss and said, "You're a wonderful man."
Now, when I see two seconds left on the microwave, it's a reminder to appreciate the thoughtful, caring man I am blessed to have in my life.

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