Today, a monster was lurking in the Pine Centre Mall. Its name? Carly’s Mexican/Irish temper. Have you heard of it? Sightings are rare, but after much provoking, it will render its owner tearful, spouting at everything in Spanish if possible, and generally just spiraling out of control.
I think it was a combination of multiple things I’d been only slightly pissed off about (with myself and others) in the past few days, but never had a chance to actually address them, and then I was made to work for 4 hours during a deeeeeeaaaaaaaaddddddd time of day with a co-worker who I like but is socially awkward, and then I started dropping valuable things that needed to not be dropped.
That’s when I started getting annoyed by every…little…thing.
There was our deaf-mute lady customer, who I normally do not have a problem with, but today her gargled laughter sent shivers down my spine and her smile made me feel like I was the next thing she wanted to eat.
And then I got sick of potatoes, down to the very sight and smell of them. Which is not helpful in my line of work.
And then my co-worker was either speaking in way that I couldn’t hear or understand her, so she had to repeat everything – until I could hear everything properly but she kept repeating everything. I felt like the dullest crayon in the box, the dimmest lightbulb; the, well, you get it. I wanted to scream.
Even though the monster never quite surfaced out loud, it was doing a Godzilla in my heart. I felt so gross. And I wondered, is this who I really am? I began to get discouraged that perhaps I was the master at putting on a grand “sweetheart” play for everyone to see, but in reality, I was the next Joan Crawford.
As time crawled by, my first co-worker left, and my second co-worker came on for her shift. She’s a lot better to work with, but I was still trying to hide what was going on inside of me. Then, somehow, we got onto the topic of church denominations. She said that she’d been with her boyfriend for the last 3 years and if they ever got married, she knew she’d never get divorced because he came from a Catholic background. She claims that she doesn’t believe anything, but it was still comforting for her to know that about him.
Then she asked me the Question:
“What do you believe?”
And it was like the storm had been spoken to: “Peace, be still.” I suddenly felt like I had a purpose for being there at that moment, and that perhaps God could even still use me and my words despite all my failings of the previous hours.
As I shared my faith with her, she didn’t make fun of me or say I was stupid. When I said that I was a Christian but that I tried not to be a hypocrite to it, and that I didn’t believe going to church made you any closer to God, she nodded her head respectfully. And then I offered to answer any questions about God or the Bible she may have at any time, and she didn’t scoff. She smiled.
And for me, it was like: Oh yeah. That’s why I’m here.