As I brought the girls to the bus at the end of our driveway this morning, I was greeted by a passerby who offered to help. I assured him the driver and his rider could manage and thanked him for his help. I turned to talk to the driver only to notice a few minutes later that the passerby had not left but was watching the whole loading process. I gave him (albeit curious mother lion) eye contact, and this was our conversation:
"I didn't mean to be rude in offering help."
"I didn't think you were being rude; that was very kind of you to offer to help."
"It just makes me so angry to see this."
"What makes you so angry?"
"Your kids. They shouldn't have to be like that. What did they do to deserve this? I mean, I believe in God, but if He made us in His image, why did he make your girls like that? I've had a rough couple of years, but I have all my faculties. It isn't fair that your girls have done nothing and have to be this way."
(And now I am thinking he may have his faculties but not his filter. I should have had my coffee before 8 this morning, and I should really have my dad on speed dial.)
"Well, be thankful you have your faculties, and don't let this anger determine your day. My girls are well cared for and loved. They are off to school, and they are happy."
"Yeah - I bet they are happier than pigs in....."
(shit? He never finished that sentence. And I wondered if this was the time and place to really dive into birth, design, and direction. I feel as though I skirted around answering the questions he was asking, but I wasn't convinced he was really listening. It was as if he was focused on his anger over my kids' inabilities. For whatever reason at 8:07 in the morning on my driveway.)
"Hey, no one is perfect, sir. We all have our struggles."
"Well, seeing your kids makes me so angry."
"(seeking-right-words pause) I hope you have a good day, and I hope you don't stay angry."
And then he left.
It was probably one of the more frank convos I've had about my kids. Most people tilt their head, turn their eyebrows in, cluck their teeth and offer sympathy. This guy was flat out angry. I appreciated his direct attitude because anger is definitely one of the emotions I wrestle with in this journey with our girls.
We have such a set idea in our heads of what it means to be made in the image of our Creator. I don't think we quite grasp His colourful mosaic - or the fact that we live in an imperfect world. I am thankful that God's arms span beyond our anger and all the other emotions that come with this complicated life.
Peace to your homes,