Fighting Fear

on 03 September 2010

Years ago in Athens, Chris and I lived in this apartment.  It was a great apartment, spacious and right in the middle of everything.  The drawback was that, being in the middle of everything, it tended to attract some less than savory characters.

Like our upstairs neighbors.

These were the guys who went out drinking until 2am and came home only to get into a violent altercation with one another.  Resulting in one roommate moving out and the other being evicted (because of our repeated complaints) shortly thereafter.

I say "our" complaints loosely.  See, it was more like I complained to Chris and then Chris complained to the neighbors, and when that didn't work we called the police, and when that didn't work we called the leasing agent.  THAT worked.  But usually it was Chris.  I was FAR to big of a chicken to do any of the actual on-the-spot talking.

Imagine if you will, that time has passed.  We no longer live in Athens, we live in North Carolina.  It's not our upstairs neighbors (though, what they're doing up there is a mystery to me) it's our next door neighbors.  It's Friday night.  And I try to be patient but when the music is vibrating MY walls, and my child is restless and my Man is asleep.  Well.  I had no choice.

I must say, motherhood works mighty miracles on the character of a woman.  I never would have imagined myself bold enough to pound on a stranger's door and calmly ask them to turn their music down because my child is sleeping on the other side of their wall and it's vibrating the whole of the downstairs structure.  And yes, I'm a bit proud of myself.  (Though I will confess to praying fervently that our next door neighbors aren't axe wielding psychopaths.)

And you know, he was really decent.  Not mean or rude in any way.  He seemed surprised, I think it wasn't quite so loud to him as it is to us.  I didn't explain that my knocking on his door and making that simple request is a big fat grown-up moment for me.

I'm a little embarrassed to admit this, but if we didn't have the Boy, I probably would have woken Chris up and demanded that he go over there and tell them to turn it down.  And Chris probably would have.  He would have said I was completely crazy, and he would have grumbled about having to go next door because his wife can't have a conversation with a STRANGER, but he still would have done it.