Annie has good reason to feel worn down. She's been a substitute teacher in New York City public schools for years, trying to reach kids who simply seem not to want to be reached. I think she's also developed a thick scar over the murder of her son. Shot down in the street by a Hispanic youth, Robert symbolized for Annie everything that was right in the world, and his death symbolizes everything that is wrong. She's tired of always being good.
I get that. Especially today. I spend most of my work day helping people. Being kind and understanding to patients who are sometimes cranky and rude. I try to remain positive and happy. It's tiring. By lunch, I'm feeling pretty worn down, and by quitting time, I have used up all of my princess points. I don't want want to help anybody.
When I pulled into my driveway this evening at 9:30 p.m., I was in a foul mood. If I had opened my mouth, I would have said something mean or angry to my wife or daughter. So, I decided to shovel for forty minutes. Snow had been falling all day.
I pushed piles of the white stuff, swearing and muttering. I was not Mother Teresa. There were f-bombs flying and lots of muttering. I probably looked a little deranged. However, by the time I was done, my foul mood had improved considerably. I didn't say anything mean to my daughter or wife, and I wasn't contemplating calling in sick to work for the rest of the year.
That's God's love number seven: Saint Marty didn't go all Jack Torrance on his family.
|Block your ears, Mother Teresa.|