Monday, March 05, 2007
GO TO BED FOR GOD'S SAKE! thus sayeth the Lord.
But the LORD replied, "Have you any right to be angry?"
“Maybe it’s just me.”
Have you ever thought that? It’s just the tiniest acknowledgment of responsibility. Maybe. I’m not sure but there is a slight possibility that this is in some small way potentially my fault perhaps.
The other night we were driving home from dinner, we four. As per usual the conversation was all over the place and 99% nonsensical and just trying to keep track of the discussion required a roadmap and a translator.
At some point the babbling turns to me, specifically my anger when daboyz stay up late.
Let me remind you that daboyz are seventeen and eighteen years old.
One more important bit of additional background that you need is that my parents have warped me in many ways, one of which was a strictly enforced 9:00 p.m. bedtime until I moved out to get married at age nineteen. This caused such developmental hazard that to this day I consider nine the witching hour and feel alarmed and afraid to find myself awake at such a time. I head for bed at 7:30 just to be sure I’m asleep lest the bogey man get me. I am now biologically incapable of being awake past nine because of my upbringing. You are about to see why this is vital information.
Daboyz stay up later than 9:00.
Every night I awaken around 2:00 a.m. At this point I invariably realize that my bladder is full and from here I proceed to pretend I can hold it until morning. At 3:00 a.m. I decide that my kidneys are going to explode and there’s nothing for it but the trek down the stairs to go to the bathroom.
It is during this sacred ritual that I will, on a regular basis, find one or more boyz wide awake watching television or on a laptop or just sitting around being awake. At three a.m.
It’s downright unGodly.
So as we’re driving home daboyz decide to bring up my sporadic rants at three in the morning when I “catch” them unasleep. In my own defense, I usually only sigh disapprovingly these days.
Daboyz feel my anger is unfounded as they do not stay up to the wee hours on school nights, are never tardy to class and have suffered no ill effects for their folly.
Why, they asked, do I get so angry about them being up late?
I had a few ideas flit across my brain before I had to admit the truth, “Maybe it’s just me.”
Maybe there’s no good reason to be mad. Maybe it’s just a stupid thing I do that I need to knock off.
Angry is kind of a serious thing to be. I have overused it myself.
And there’s lots of kinds of angry. Stupid angry that you just should knock off. Justified angry that you need to express appropriately. Angry that is justified that you need to not express and instead choose grace to cover over. Insert your own favorite flavor of angry here.
Regardless, angry is a serious thing to be.
I’m starting to think that “Maybe it’s just me” is probably a pretty good first reaction when angry starts asserting itself. Perhaps that would provide a moment, an hour or a day to consider the question that Jonah had to answer...
Have you any right to be angry?
And if so, so what?
I’m going to work on praying in response to anger before acting.
I suspect there are an awful lot of times I’m going to find out that it is, after all, just me.
But I still think daboyz should go to bed.