There are times I write to share some idea. Times I write to share lessons learned. Today I write to share a major mother fail.
I wish it were not so but it is.
My son’s perspective on life is mostly dark. While he has a Bipolar NOS diagnosis because he is a rapid cycler and can experience both mania and depression simultaneously, his overall perspective on life tends toward darkness.
To be painfully honest, I find it difficult at times to separate from his darkness.
Yesterday we were coming home from a movie. You would think this a fun experience that would put him in a good mood, if moods had anything to do with circumstances. But often with bipolar disorder, moods have nothing to do with circumstances. If I understood it, I could retire to Hawaii. But I don’t. I just accept it.
I asked him to get directions to head back home and he did — only his gps told us it was 1.4 miles away. I knew this was inaccurate — we were easily 20 miles from home. So I asked him to put the address in again and see what it said.
This was the beginning of the meltdown.
Yes, I know. Over that? You are kidding?
I wish I were. Only, this story isn’t about his failure. It is about mine.
He began to meltdown and I could see it spinning out of control. His voice was raised (in our car, mind you) and his words becoming more aggressive. He turned to cursing me very quickly and I initially responded with a calm, reasoning voice.
He continued to curse and blame and then I snapped. I said something I never thought would cross my lips: “I am not the one with a bipolar and Asperger diagnosis. I am not the one who is insane.”
The instant those words left my mouth I felt conviction. How could I utter such hateful words???
His response was predictable. He melted down more. He cursed more. He threatened more.
I sat in silence.
Then this: “I am sorry, Jack. I was wrong to say that to you. There is no excuse for my responding that way to you. I was wrong.”
He continued for a few more minutes as I drove in silence. Then he became quiet, sullen.
After a few minutes he commented that he did not know why he melted down over such a silly thing. And he hated it. And he didn’t know how to stop it.
I sat thinking of my own failure. I don’t have bipolar disorder yet I sinned in this moment. I had to seek forgiveness from him and God. I needed grace also.
Fortunately, there is an abundant supply.
And today is a new day with new mercies.
I am so grateful for that.