I recently took a road trip three hours east to High Point, NC to attend a wedding. Have you ever been in an unfamiliar place? Ever been driving along, on unfamiliar roads, maybe going slower than the speed limit as you approach an intersection, trying to decide which way to turn?
The road through downtown High Point was deserted as we crawled along, trying to identify where we were and more importantly, where we wanted to go. Just as we decided to turn left a giant pickup truck appeared out of nowhere, BANG, smashing violently into the driver’s side of our car, the window shattering loudly and sending glass in every direction. For a minute the world stopped. We struggled to figure out what just happened.
Though shocked and shaking, we were both unhurt, our hearts racing, our minds whirling, our breath ragged, our clothes covered in glass. My husband managed to get out, squeezing through the tiny space between the vehicles, rushing over to check on the other driver but amazingly the driver would not roll down the window, get out of the vehicle or acknowledge him in any way. The truck was completely unblemished, not a scratch or dent on it. The windows were tinted and we could not see in. After repeated attempts to talk, we gave up, waiting for the police officer and then going through the necessary steps following any accident. The other driver never exited the truck but we could hear him questioning and being generally rude to the officer asking the questions.
Eventually we went on our way, as did the pickup truck.
Today we got a call from our insurance company saying the driver and passenger of the other vehicle have claimed the accident left them injured. They are seeking medical compensation. What? We both asked, how could this be? Their truck was undamaged–like a tank! They smashed into us! We were hardly moving.
Hearing this made me angry and I spent the better part of an hour fuming, wondering how people can be so dishonest.
Then I went upstairs, sitting at my deck which is in front of a giant window that overlooks our freshly-dressed trees and yard dotted with yellow flowers and brand-new ferns. Two hummingbirds came to feed at my window feeder. Our cat curled up in the bed on my desk. A brilliant blue sky created a patchwork between dark branches and green leaves. And I suddenly thought, “Wait a minute! I am ruining a perfectly good day for what?” I resolved not let it derail this lovely spring day.
There are all kinds of things everyday that can make us angry, that can change a good day into a bad day. But next time you find yourself angry, you might want to ask, “What’s the point?” And think about this–my quote for the week, and a good bit of advice that seems especially relevant today:
“Holding onto anger is like drinking a poison and then waiting for the other person to die.” –Buddah
May your day be wonderful!