In personal situations, sometimes I feel very strongly that I'm right and you're wrong. It's very hard for me to see that you have your own point of view, that you don't mean me any harm, and that your needs and concerns are as valid as mine. I feel pretty sure that the way I see things is the way they are, and the way you see things is confused. Sometimes I'll even spend time arguing with you to help you see clearly.
Practicing Metta meditation during this time feels counterintuitive and impossible. How can I wish you well and happy when you're so annoying? How can I want for you to be happy when you don't even know the best thing for you?
But sitting silently and repeating the phrases of lovingkindness, returning again and again to this moment, the barrage of my opinions and viewpoints and certainities starts to lessen. It doesn't seem as urgent or important for you to agree with me. In fact, maybe it doesn't matter at all. Maybe what matters is that we can hear each other and wish each other well and still see things differently. Maybe we'll come to a compromise or one of us will change our minds. Maybe we'll let the matter drop and remember how much we care about each other.
Just because I'm a Buddhist doesn't mean I'm immune to feeling frustration, resentment, and crabbiness. What it does mean is that I know the antidote to difficult feelings, both mine and yours, is meeting them with awareness and compassion. May we be safe, be happy, be healthy, and live with ease.