I write this post while embarking on the next step in my journey to self-discovery. I can only share how I feel and what I long to resolve and be free from. You may be here or have already reached the other side of this storm and are patiently waiting for others like me to join you in the sunshine of serene peace.
Emotions are one of the things we talk about the most, especially with current parenting styles directing us to be more emotionally intelligent parents and to teach this to our kids. We spend so much time seeking what is missing from how we feel, what we do, and how we interpret what we do with these identified feelings.
Most of these emotions and their exploration are easy to deal with and face head-on. Some are fun and fulfilling to let openly into our lives, like joy, contentment, and utter happiness. Others are more difficult to navigate, like sadness, grief, depression, or frustration. No matter the depth of the search I needed to embark upon, I was always up for the challenge. I believed that I was either in a good place with most of these emotions or where I and the emotion had a healthy respect for each other and each other’s boundaries.
The one emotion that has always eluded me, though, is anger. I never realized it did not show up in my life. It is deeply repressed from a lifetime of ignoring the fact that it exists. I’ve recently come face-to-face with the realization that anger is not only calling my name, it’s screaming at me like a banshee. It wants me to feel and experience it.
This confusing and scary realization keeps coming to me in my dreams. It constantly shows up as a feeling of churning in my gut. Like a storm is brewing, the winds are gathering and whipping around me, and the tornado is about to be released. Is it time to stare this one in the face?
My relationship with anger is complicated, or is it overly simplified? Don’t feel it, don’t show it, don’t say it. My interactions with anger have left me with many wounds, most still open and bleeding. My run-ins with this emotion have taught me that this is an emotion so dangerous, so poisonous, and so all-consuming it’s like a drug. Never get curious about it, indulge in it, never recognize it. No part of me has ever even entertained the thought that anger is just another emotion in the multitude of normal, healthy emotions that we should all experience and give attention to.
To me, anger is breaking cupboards or people, screaming, hurling words like knives, saying things that can never be taken back, directing calculating verbal assaults disguised as being done “in the name of love,” and slamming doors. I wish to be or perpetrate none of the above. Feeling or acknowledging anger, therefore = me being precisely like this. No, thank you, I will happily stick my head in the sand every time anger comes around the bend and play dead.
This has worked well for most of my life. Until it didn’t. I believe things come about when we are ready to deal with them and put them to rest. I think this time has arrived for me and my old enemy, anger. By constantly suppressing any and all anger I may possibly feel toward a person or a situation, I have created a lot of pressure that needs to be contained. I have sacrificed much of myself, my time, and what I want by trying to steer clear of feeling or displaying any type of anger.
Pressure can only be contained for so long before the lid pops, and my cover has been trembling in the wake of the coming storm. I overreact to silly things, vomiting short-ended replies and constantly carrying around this sick feeling in my tummy. I dream of walking in a beautiful forest, finding the perfect spot, and screaming. It’s cleansing, its freeing, it’s the peace I seek. It feels liberating to let it all out, feel it, become friends with it, and explore a way of co-existing. My soul tells me it is time, and I am ready.
It could be okay to get angry, to admit I am mad, and to work on releasing it with love and light? To this, I tell myself, remember that love is all there is in the end. Whatever I give back and release to love can only blossom into something beautiful. I have no idea where this path will lead me, but I know that what is waiting at the end is lovely, and it’s calling me to liberation. I am embarking on this journey with some help from my spiritual mentor, and I will keep you posted on my journey.
It is still amazing to me how we can be so influenced by what we have been taught to be real. Like any other emotion, anger does not have to be scary or terrifying. Life balances itself, that is, the uniqueness of the existence we find ourselves in. Good and bad, happy and sad, tired and energized…it is all balance. Just so is anger and joy, anger and love, anger and release. I teach my little girl that it’s okay to be angry and to describe where she feels this emotion. Yet, I cannot come to terms with it myself because I fear seeing it as something normal and freeing.
I am excited about embarking on this path of welcoming anger into my life as a healthy release form, setting boundaries, expressing emotion, and speaking up for myself. Will it be easy? I have no idea. Will I succeed? I will have to keep you posted.
What is your relationship to anger? Any tips for me as I embark on this journey?
Love and Light