I have a dirty secret. I’m a really angry person. Or as of a few weeks, I used to be a really angry person. Not “anger management” type of anger, more like depression type anger.
Without realizing, I have been trying to bury my anger. To keep myself busy so that I wouldn’t think about it or feel it. If I stopped, anger would consume even more of me. With anger came stress, anxiety, unhappiness. All of these feelings left little room for anything else. And roll all of this together, I felt completely out of control and like I was suffocating.
In reality, I WAS the one in control. I was suffocating myself. But for the last three years (maybe even longer, but can’t fully remember life before Asher was born), I wasn’t able to see this. I simply didn’t know why I was so unhappy, exhausted, and on edge all of the time.
Three years later and three therapists later, on the third visit with my newest therapist (third times the charm?!), she talked to me about anger for the first time. Or maybe it was just the first time I actually heard it. And everything she said was true.
I have the right to be angry about things in my life. But what I do with that anger is 100% my choice. And if I choose to actually be angry, I’m only hurting myself.
This became more clear after she handed me a book clipping.
This is exactly what was happening to me. Anger was the source of so many of my “problems.” I was a skeleton of my old self. I knew that, but didn’t know why or how to fix it, so it just kept getting worse. Simply acknowledging the anger and realizing I’m in control of it has been an amazing first step.
“When you can look a thing dead in the eye, acknowledge that it exists, call it exactly what it is, and decide what role it will take in your life, then, my beloved, you have taken the first steps toward your freedom.”
I already feel lighter, less busy, and happier. I have more patience, more capacity, and more love. “Anger doesn’t solve anything. It builds nothing, but can destroy everything.”