Monday, October 29, 2007

An Emotional Reactor

Hi, my name is Lydia, and I'm an Emotional Reactor.

Last week, I saw an elderly man who had fallen and hit his head on concrete. There was blood everywhere (as there is with head injuries), and it was a tense several minutes waiting for the ambulance. When I came home from that incident, I told Jon how much it had scared me. I prayed for the man and his family, and--not able to do anything else--I moved on. However, later that day, I snapped at Jon and caused a huge blowup over a trivial issue. At the end of that argument, I realized that it wasn't the little thing Jon did that I was upset about; it was the image of the man in a pool of blood that was replaying in my mind. I hadn't realized how much it bothered me.

Something similar happened last night. I had several things occur yesterday that could have upset me, including a forum discussion about Registered Sex Offenders in the church. I didn't know that I was upset, though, until I careened right into a confused argument with Jon. Confused, because Jon had no idea where it was coming from. And I didn't either, really, until I could look at it in retrospect, and understand how much I'd internalized the things I'd heard that evening.

So I've realized I'm an emotional reactor. I take things really hard with no initial warning signs. Then, when it comes out, it's an explosion that no one should be around for! I'm sorry to say that Jon has been around for more than his share!

So, how does one combat a problem like this? We all know that the first step is recognizing I have a problem (hence the first sentence of this post). But what after that? How do I become aware of something that has up til now only revealed itself in retrospect?

Well, to continue with the AA 12-Step-Program, it turns out that the next step is (gasp!) trusting in God to fix the problem. Now I feel like the idiot Christian who should know better. So, you can be sure that I'll be bringing this issue to the One who created me, who must sigh every time I get so blind. And as for you, well, if I get upset with you, have some patience and remember that my idealistic heart can't handle all the evils of this world, and sometimes that reaction comes out when no one expects it.


  1. Recognizing our personality flaws is the beginning to great growth. Trusting our Maker to use our failures for His glory is a wonderful thing. Keep trusting. Love you.