Rage and the Blame Game

I don't feel like writing right. Actually I don't feel like doing much of anything, and least of all process my rage. It's a silly thing, Courtney's tire went flat yesterday, I told her to pull into the nearest gas station and see if it would air up, giving no instructions after that. I was on my way to guitar lessons and figured the leak wasn't so bad that she couldn't hold enough air to make it two miles.

A miscalculation.

She, trusting her husband, tried to air it up with all the quarters she had, then drove it home, altogether flat.

So this morning, after dropping her off at work, I throw on my snowsuit and brave the 9 degree pre-dawn darkness. I go for her car jack. Lo and behold, a small leak in the trunk apparently coated the mat with water and refroze, trapping the jack below. By now my 'tude is beginning to percolate.

I get the jack out of my car, get the wheel off, then I head down to Montieth tire, where I spent $200 just two days ago for a couple of tires on my own car. I lug the tire in, hand it off and sit down in the small waiting area where two men are having a conversation, or rather one man is telling the other man about his seven cats and his time in the navy and how he was an alcoholic but then just decided to stop drinking. The other man sheepishly says, "Huh –I'm not sure that's how it works for everyone." My rage is working its way toward a boil. I pretend to read a short story, afraid I'll get locked into a nodding session with the cat man. So much for enjoying a good story while I wait.

After twenty or so minutes of pretending to read, I get called to the counter, "I got bad news and I got good news." Replacing the shredded tire is $130 at another location, $110 if I wait till tomorrow morning. Had I cancelled a guitar lesson or two and taken care of it where the tire went flat it would have been $40 tops. I never caught what the good news was.

"Want the tire?" he asks. I sigh and nod. I could probably save twenty bucks if I went to Wal-Mart but Montieth does good work, I've heard stories of them slashing prices for down and outs. And I'd rather keep the money in the community. But it's not the money that nags at me. Thanks to Dave Ramsey, what would have at a different point in my life been a crisis is now only an aggravation. No it's not the money –it's my mistake that has me in full blown rage as I pull out of the lot.

I hate the feeling of incompetence. I lash out, cover it up, find ways to pass off blame. My mind cycles through a list of ways Courtney could have prevented this, a hundred ways she owes me something. The poor girl. I formulate ways of framing the conversation that might make her feel responsible. The more I realize how childish I'm acting, the more angry I become.

511 words later. I'm feeling a little better. Confessing our transgressions and weakness seems to be the best way to avert the rage.

Thanks for looking in on my therapy session.

May He guide you through the wilderness. May He protect you through the storm. May He bring you home rejoicing at the wonders he has shown you.