Thursday, October 21, 2010

Bleep Happens

You know how they have shooting ranges for people who carry guns? They go out to these places, wear some sort of protective ear covering, and practice hitting their mark.

I woke up this morning wishing there was some some of screaming range. Maybe call it a Rage Range. (I'm only half kidding here.)

A conversation with my husband last night got saucy, and I hadn't seen it coming. In the middle, there was some Bleepity Bleep you Bleeping Bleep Bleep!

Not our best moment.

I wish I felt better prepared for when those conversations happen. I wish I had a level where I could check the placement of my 'bubble.' I get off-centered, and inevitably, that's when one of these conversations will take place. Maybe if I felt more prepared, or even just aware of my internal 'bubble's' status, I wouldn't end up heating up to boiling and screaming as if I were a tea kettle. (Sorry, Tea Kettle. I know you get used as an illustration for a woman possessed a lot of the time, and that's not really fair. I hope you'll forgive me and not take it out on some poor guy's Earl Grey.)

But how does someone prepare for those inevitable conversations? How does someone reel in a conversation before it jumps the tracks and crash lands in someone's heart? After we had exchanged 'bleeps,' we each went to our corners and separated for a few minutes. We needed to cool down before we did any more damage. We frequently take breaks in the middle of arguments. We know that we need to get some perspective, and I usually find myself praying for wisdom and gentleness and humility. Most of the time, when we get back together, we end up apologizing and asking for forgiveness. It's like God aligns our bubbles when we take a break, and we're able to continue from a much more balanced place. I'd just like to know if there's something I can do BEFORE the Bleep happens.

So it got me wondering if the Bleep needed to happen to align my bubble. (probably not, but at 6am, this is where my mind was.) What if I had the opportunity to go into a Rage Range, get in a sound-proof booth, and practice what I wanted to say without any of those disjointed, emotional, insensitive words actually hurting the guy I love? What if I had the chance to work out what I needed to say and was able to figure out a way to say it that didn't break the sound barrier?

and then I thought - hey, I don't need a sound-proof box! I need a girlfriend! Someone who I can spew all my raw thoughts too, who nods and affirms my feelings and then gently guides me into a clearer perspective so that I can have a less volatile discussion with my husband. Isn't that what women throughout the ages have done?

and THEN I thought - well, bleep. I don't yet feel like I have a girlfriend like that here. I had them in TX, but I haven't gotten to know someone here enough to trust them with my messes. I do have this one friend, but she won't be gentling guiding me into a clear perspective. More like shoveling in some more coal for my runaway train.

And so, usually I go to God, and usually it's AFTER I've already screwed up. Which is not working for us. I think I need to call a Time Out earlier in our conversation and ask God to guide my lips and control my tongue. To be honest, my husband does that already. He tries to back away from the chaos that he knows is coming if he doesn't detach soon, but then I judge him and call him a bleep for walking away.

(BLEEP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) <--Sound-proofed rant. See, isn't that effective?!

Why in the world do I do that?! Oh, yea. I'm a wretch. A monster. A human.

but at least, this morning, I'm a forgiven wretch. A forgiven monster. A forgiven human. Because my husband is a forgiving husband.


Chris Freeland said...

New book for ya: "Crucial Conversations" by Patterson, Grenny, McMillan and Switzer.

chloeadele said...

Thanks, Chris. I'm gonna check my library.

Any book suggestions for someone who is really walled up and protective of her heart, but needs to open up and decrease the 'distance' she's keeping everyone at? Or for someone who doesn't have any skills for how to get the thoughts in his head out of his mouth?

Coz I've got these 'friends'...

hartman said...

love you! Thank you for sharing -- know that you are not alone in your feelings.