"Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing." Prov. 12:18
When I was young, I had a terrible problem with running my mouth. My moms 'popular' punishment of washing my mouth out with soap happened at least a few times a month, but it didn't help. I just plain had a lack of self-control when it came to talking back. Somedays I wonder why that 8-year old part of me never learns.
Maybe it was 'one of those days'. You know, when you wake up feeling crabby, but truth is, that isn't really an excuse. My morning went fine but my afternoon just went downhill, starting with when I had to call Verizon to deal with a billing issue. Mr. 31 and I finally got cable and internet in the house after all these years. It's been 3 months and we haven't been charged the correct amount yet. Talk about frustrating. On this months bill they charged us for a package we don't even have! Anyway, I call to take care of that and after being on hold for 20 minutes the woman who answers the phone verifies all my info and then says that, due to her system being updated, she can't help me and I'll have to call back. Me call them back.
I started out being patient and kind. Really, I did. But not only could she not help me, she couldn't transfer me to anyone else. I don't use it often, but I have a business-woman, no-nonsense edge of my personality and it kicked into gear right about now. No, I wasn't going to call back, we were going to take care of this right now. Did she really want me to believe that Verizon updated its system at 2 p.m. in the afternoon during business hours? You get the picture.... I probably wasn't the most pleasant customer she had that day. Afterwards, (and no, we never did resolve the issue, still waiting on that one) I felt a little guilty. I should have been kinder. I should have been more understanding. I should have taken a deep breath and remembered how un-important this was in the scheme of things.
Why, oh why, don't I learn the first time?
Cue 5:00 p.m. I rush home from work and am busy throwing together a quick dinner so I can get to my evening class on time. Mr. 31 and I are chatting and he mentions that he stopped by the bank today to pay the mortgage and they charged him a late fee and he isn't sure why. Unless he doesn't realize it, all bills have been on time. Can I call tomorrow and double check on it? (Let me quick mention that as long as we have been married he has taken care of the bills and I don't even give it a second thought. I like it that way.) I should have said 'sure, no problem, babe!'. I should have remembered that I love him for being so responsible and regimented and said, 'hmm...sounds odd...but lets look into before we jump to conclusions.' Instead, I jump like a crazy woman. I bang my fork on the side of my bowl and say, 'WHAT??? Do you know how important the mortgage is??' <sigh> You can imagine my tone of voice, right? And, without rehashing the whole ugly situation to you right now, lets just say I proceed to freak out and be a very ugly person for several looooong minutes.
Finally, I call our bank. It is a 3 minute conversation. She pulls up our account and says oops, they made a mistake and yup, we are perfectly fine and no big deal, they will just apply the extra to principle. <giant gulp> Do you know what I felt like as I hung that phone up?
I apologized to Mr. 31 right away. One thing that marriage has taught me is that saying you are sorry immediately, when you realize your mistake, is the best thing to do. And saying it with sincerity, of course. Which I was -- sincerely sorry that I had said all those sharp things - and Mr. 31 is a wonderful person, and of course, he said 'its okay'. But really, saying sorry can't erase what came out of your mouth, or how you acted. And I know that I was out of line and let my tongue cause hurt.
UGH. So yeah, I am feeling pretty crappy right now. Maybe I'll take two slices of that humble pie....