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Word Ninjas

I went to bed at a decent hour and found myself unhappily awake at 0145hrs. That's right, 1:45 am. That doesn't even qualify for 0'dark thirty. I have been known to go to bed at that time more often than get up. I tried but couldn't return to sleep. I also could'n't think of anything productive to do in my zombie-like state so I stayed in bed and found my mind wandering. Sometimes the craziest things come to me when I am least expecting it. I found myself thinking about something I said to my pastors during a meeting we had regarding biblical counseling. I was rambling on about the importance of words and the differences between men and women in their communication styles. I called women word ninjas. "We're all sweetness and light until you don't do what we want and then we'll take you out with our tongues. I don't know why men put up with us, we're evil. We woman are word ninjas." That's the general gist. Why I was thinking about that at almost 2:00am is beyond me, but I was.

My mind went from that to some of the nastiest things that have been said to me, all of them courtesy of a woman or woman in training. When I was in high school a terrible thing happened in the youth group at my church. I was new to the group and not popular at all but I was fairly well tolerated amongst the regulars, or so I thought. We were all together at the church for a slumber party when we heard that one of the older members of the group, a young man who was out of high school and just into college, had hung himself. He was the boyfriend of one of the beautiful and popular high school girls. I knew them both well enough to say hello to, but we weren't friends. My heart sank and I couldn't breath when I heard what had happened. I honestly could not think of a sadder situation. The young lady had broken up with him and a few hours later he killed himself. Overcome with emotions, I sobbed. I cried real tears. The kind that come with a scrunched up face and snotty nose. It wasn't pretty.

I thought about his family and the loss they felt. I wondered if the young girl felt guilty or if anyone would say something hateful to her- trying to blame her for his death. I thought about the kids there at the church who knew him and who were expecting to have fun, not mourn the senseless death of a friend. I wondered who found him and it took my breath away to think of his mom or dad having to find their son's lifeless body. It was all too much for me and I sat crying. Then I heard someone call my name. It was one of the girls I went to school with. It was one of the girls I thought more than tolerated me. The tone of her voice and her choice of words let me know what she was thinking. "Rosemarie? Did you even know Randy???" Forty years later I can hear the disgust in her voice.

I was being berated for crying. I had not earned the right to mourn so completely or openly for someone who was just a casual acquaintance. Apparently there was a social mores I had violated by being moved to tears in this situation. My tears had been found offensive and I was being judged. The group of girls my interrogator was with all looked at me expectantly. Ready to pounce if I said the wrong thing. I looked at her and quietly responded, "No. It's just too sad to do anything but cry." She rolled her eyes, spun on here heel and took off with her groupies waddling behind her.

You know, anything you want to know about total depravity you can learn in a situation like this. Why was it keeping me awake?


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