The Gift of Anger

life's tests

Anger is the house of sadness.   It is impossible to separate the two emotions; when sadness is not healthily expressed it  festers into anger.  Within these emotions live the countless opportunities we did not take.  The hurts we did not forgive, the let-downs and betrayals, the times we did not hold ourselves accountable and all the cowardly choices we made that did not help us grow into our power.  Behind every outrage is a lot of hurt and this toxic state of being harbours resentment and fear, not to mention a miserable existence.

We all know that holding on to anger is unhealthy; it can outwardly manifest as numerous unwanted symptoms like illness, mental fog, depression, and it always has us at the edge of a vulnerable precipice. But here is the good news, anger is an incredibly healthy part of our emotional wellbeing.  When we learn to use anger as a tool for growth, we can begin to live responsibly and with less reactivity.

Life will continually mirror the things we need to heal, so we might as well avoid the repeated discomforts and face our wounded parts as they come up. Think of a time when you got angry and ask yourself if the reaction was appropriate for the given situation.  If you jumped the gun or went straight to seeing red, you were most likely dealing with a residue of unresolved emotions.   Each time this happens, we are not able to see things clearly because we are revisiting that unfinished business. We lose our objectivity and ability to problem solve.  People and situations repeatedly trigger us in the present providing an opportunity to heal something in the past.

I recently got in the car and exploded with frustration and anger when I found it on empty. My husband tends to drive it until it’s past the red and it drives me absolutely nuts.  My mind was racing.  I mean, can you imagine?  I could have been stranded!  And what if I didn’t have my phone with me? Who knows what else could have happened?  My inner dialogue kept ranting away and I was definitely not seeing things clearly.  You see, many years ago, he asked me to take his car knowing that it had been on empty for a long time.  The car puttered and died leaving me stranded on a busy street.  I was only 19, alone and I didn’t own a cell phone.  The experience was extremely embarrassing and horrible.  I’m sure that if it had happened to him, he would have known what to do and it would have become his funny story to tell.  I, on the other hand, did not find it funny at all.  It left me feeling like I couldn’t trust him.  I took the empty gas tank as a sign that he really didn’t care about me.  Though this makes me highly anxious I’m pretty sure that for him it’s all long forgotten. Now, twenty years later, I know better and I see that he does care about my safety and wellbeing.  Plus,  I always carry my phone, I have CAA and I would know what to do.  It was time to let this go.

We all have our difference, I like to fill the car up and feel prepared, he likes to see how low the needle can go.   Maybe some of us can live with a little more risk, while for others feeling safe is a priority. In truth, it really doesn’t matter.  If we are arguing over whose methods and habits are better, no one wins.  Regardless of who’s right or wrong, who’s entitled to be upset or who should be making greater efforts, anger always presents itself when we need to heal an unmet part of ourselves.

The next time you see red, take a moment to ask yourself some important questions “Am I overreacting?  What do I need in order to feel supported, loved, understood?  How is this different now?  Can I change my perception so that I am no longer walking on a minefield every it happens? ”   Then do what you need to in order to validate your anger and replace it with forgiveness.  Later, when it blows over and your nostrils are no longer flaring, you may feel surprisingly grateful that it happened because the alternative to feeling scorned for two decades is being able to own the story and maybe even laugh.



Doing what’s right

follow your heart

Do what is right for you and by you.

Every day spent making unhealthy decisions and every moment that is love-impoverished will build on frustration and dissatisfaction.

When we keep our heart’s voices loud and strong, our personal truths do not get lost.

When we listen to every one else’s voice but our own, our every thought becomes tainted by that disowned, muddled truth and our hearts grow increasingly heavier. What used to be easy and clear soon becomes difficult to know.  We grow more unsure, more fearful and rigid.  This can go on indefinitely.  Nothing we do in this state can bring us a sense of well-being because we are not well when we are out of touch with what is important to us. At some point, each of us has to decide that it is not ok to live with this lack of clarity, this immense burden and feeling of dissatisfaction.   What you know to be true for you, without data, proof, or rationale is your sacred truth. Choose to listen to it carefully and know that nothing comes to you that you are not able to handle.

We can look to loved ones to create a supportive, loving space for us but no one, not a single person owes us recognition, love, joy or anything else for that matter.  Others are in our life’s peripheral only to mirror things back, to offer a reflection that is different from our own that may cause us to pause and adjust our choices.  There are a million possibilities, an infinite number of ways to do things but none will be better for you than your own way.  Go back to what you know is right for you.

Keep your head up and keep your heart strong knowing that even in this very moment, you have all that you need.  Truly.  All the necessary resources to change your  life are in very close range and you can choose to be a receptive conduit.  We all hold courage and strength, some have it in plain sight while others have it hidden away quietly awaiting to be summoned.  A warrior proves himself when needed.

You could do the job the hard way and wait, and wait, and wait-or you could take advantage of what’s there and make the changes that will open your heart and your world wide open.  Let every step you take lead you that much closer to who you want to be.  ♥


The darndest things -chicken pox

one smart little chick

(Noa, when speaking about the importance of getting vaccines even though the needles hurt)

“What’s chicken pox mommy? ”

“Well, it’s a virus that makes you sick.  Red itchy dots appear all over your body and kids are more likely to get it than adults which is why you should get the vaccine.”

“Like, all over… ALL OVER?”  she raised a concerned eyebrow, “Even on your privates?”

“Yup, and your face and your hands.  I wish they had vaccines for it when I was little.  It can get quite uncomfortable and if your scratch the sores, you get scars like the one I have on my forehead.”

She looked closely, “Oh, that’s what that hole is.”

“It is not a hole, thank you very much.  It’s a constant reminder of many days at home bored and covered in calamine lotion -that’s a lotion for the itchiness.  One day I was playing cards and lost at Go Fish.  It was a dumb mistake.  I slapped my forehead and felt a pop.”

She caressed my forehead gently and tilted her head in empathy “How old were you when you got the chicken dots?” she asked.

“I was twelve,” suddenly I was flooded with the same adolescent drama of this unfairness, ” I got teased so badly.  Some kids called it a Paki-Dot, which is very rude and inaccurate so never say that. I hated it.”

“So for only twelve years you didn’t have it?”

“That’ s right’ ”

“Think of all the years it’s been with you.  It went everywhere with you.”

“You’re right honey, it’s not really a big deal.  I don’t really mind any more,”

I paused, wondering at the depth this was taking.

“But you gotta love it too mommy.  It’s so cute.  You had it for so long, it’s kinda like a friend.”

“I guess it is.  It gives me a story to tell and it’s what makes my face look like me now.”

“That’s how I’ll always know it’s you.”  she assured while lightly hovering over the scar with her index finger.

“Ok mommy, you can let the doctor pinch me with the needle”.♥