C’mon Man … I know who you are
I know who you are because I’ve been you.
I see the veins popping from your neck. I see your face twisted and red and your eyes glowing with rage. You’re showing me someone you’re not. As a matter of fact, there’s a little boy inside of you who is scared to death that someone might figure out that he’s afraid. Behind each threatening burst of profanity you throw at me I see a hurt little boy trying to hide behind a clenched jaw, tightened fist, and a pain that’s choking him to death. You’re so afraid your fear will be seen that you’re about to explode. You don’t want anyone to know that you hurt, or even that you can be hurt. You even try to hide it from yourself, but there’s something in your anger that doesn’t ring true, because all it does is reveal to me that you’re just a scared little boy.
In the split second that my fist strikes your jaw, everything shifts into slow motion, and even before you start your fall, the arrogant look on your face falls first and changes to a blank stare as you slowly crumple to the ground. You haven’t the breath with which to speak and so your pleading eyes say it all, “What happened?” And then they roll back and close; and, you’re out cold.
When a person’s out-cold they can’t think of breaking their fall and so I usually try to catch the person so they don’t hit their head on the concrete. It’s usually at this time that I realize I didn’t really want to hit this guy at all. The first thought that comes to me as I lower him to the ground is I don’t ever want to see that look on another man’s face again because when I’m looking into the face of an angry man, all I see is a confused and hurt little boy.
I already knew before I hit him it was going to break my heart; but, I hit him just the same. And it breaks my heart, because I know when I’m hurting him, I’m just hurting the little boy that he’s trying to hide from me. I hope the day will come, that when I see the scared little boy in you, I’ll not bring out that scared little boy in me.
Someday, I hope I can be man enough … not to be that little boy.