An Interesting Story Of Anger And Thank You
--by supune, posted Dec 1, 2007
I'm a volunteer with Be The Cause's team that voluteers Saturday night with the Lights On project outside the Orange County, CA county jail. There's many interesting stories I learn from the volunteers and others that I meet there.
One in particular is from a guy that came back to visit after he was released. He was about 50 years old and now was homeless after his last stay in jail. He did have a family member and a friend that would let him sleep over some times in the area. This night he decided to come back and hang out with us.
He told us how he has "anger issues" that have got him in jail and prison many times. He'd been a small time burglar and kind of floating through life. He'd gotten into fights over "petty shit". He'd been arrested for being under the influence while driving or in public places. He'd been in and out of incarceration alot of his life. Most of the friends he made were from prison. He'd pray with many of them and become friends that way.
One day while he was on parole. He was sitting at a bar drinking a beer. And all of a sudden, the people started going out to see some kind of commotion. When he got outside he saw that there were 2 men beating a woman on top of hill that was a few blocks away. Nobody was doing anything but watching. He said he was a little drunk. And all of sudden he felt a great anger. He said it was so strong that he heard ringing in his ears. He doesn't remember how he jumped a couple fences and scraped up his hands as he got to where the action was going on.... By the time he realized what was going on he had chased away one attacker and had another man in a choke hold.
Then a taxi driver came and pulled a gun on all of them. Somehow the lady that was being beaten up was able to tell the taxi driver who the good guy was.
He told the taxi driver that he was on parole and didn't want to be involved at all and to not mention anything about who he was and ran away. He later found out that the lady had gone into a comma for 2 weeks.
But she came out of the comma okay. And the 2 of them actually ran into each other on the street, and she was able to say, "Thank you." But, the rescuer said that he didn't think much of it. Until a few years later, while being released from another unrelated prison stay, he became friends with a man that he was released with. Later they found out that this new friend was the brother of the lady that was attacked a few years ago. After it was explained that his sister was saved by this new friend, the brother said, "Stand Up!". The rescuer was not sure what to do or even if this was a challenge to fight. But as he stood up, he got the biggest hug he ever got. And he said that's when The Thank You from before really sunk in, and he felt it.
His story made me realize how I should appreciate every emotion. Unexplainable anger can be a force to help someone. A lot of times, we feel angry at the state of the world because it is frustrating. Maybe the point to all this is that we should learn to accept that just as that Thank You Hug was accepted. It also made me realize that America is a land of 2 worlds and one of them is unfortunately hidden away.