Thursday, January 19, 2017

I'm Mad as Hell ... and I think I like it!

I'm mad.  I am super, super pissed.  I am seething in anger.  I am so angry, it's making me laugh.

I am 43 years old.  I have brought children into this world who are extraordinary.  I spent the majority of my adult life raising these children.  The past five years have been spent working on my career. Currently, I find myself without a job, without a spouse, alienated from some family and friends, and mad as hell.

Why so angry little Girl?

I have always believed in fairy tales.  Their strong, magical plots, alluring characters, and scenes described with inspirational detail and painful beauty would transfix a young Glenda.  Being a romantic at heart, I took the death of my mother at her young age of 38 and created a beautiful story fit for Disney.  My Father and Mother had "true love", a never-dying love to supersede all loves.  Dad remarried a short year after my mother's death, but was never as happy (because she wasn't my mother).  My stepmother never loved us enough (because she wasn't my mother).  Every failure or disappointment in life was traced to losing my mother.  I crafted beautiful stories in my mind of what a glorious, happy, and perfect life I would have ... if only my mother lived.

As I grew older and had children of my own, I realized how childish my fantasies were; however, I also realized how amazing the creation of those stories were for survival through a fairly unhappy childhood.  My survival is also credited to my humor, my love for moments in time, and my ability to grasp those moments, wrap them in acid-free emotional parchment, and safely tuck them into the most protected recesses of my brain.

I realize how well I was taught to care for others.  Fighting for the comfort of anyone else above myself was the most important objective.  No one ever sat me down and told me to do this, but I witnessed it in those around me.  I learned well.  I witnessed self-denigration, sorrow, addictions, cruelty, oppression, resentment.  I learned well.

Seven years ago, I recognized these qualities within myself.  It made me angry.  My anger turned into outrage.  My outrage transformed into desire.  My desire morphed into selfishness.  My selfishness gripped hold of my heart and led me on a path which enabled me to encounter thrilling love, romance, disappointment, friendships, hatred, failure, success, loss of friendships, loss of hope, loss of time, huge success, and devastation.  The Path of Selfishness led me right back to anger.

As a child, when I had rare moments alone with my Father, I would become so overwhelmed with emotion I would cry.  He would ask, "Why are you crying?"  My response was always, "I don't know!"  Sadly, I was too embarrassed to tell him why I was crying.  I was crying because I missed him.  I missed feeling loved.  I missed being close to a parent.  I missed feeling understood.  I missed the feeling of feeling like someone saw "me".

Returning to anger felt a lot like my Father asking me, "Why are you crying?"  This time, I was asking myself, "Why are you angry?"  It hasn't taken me long to understand I'm angry because:  I miss me, I miss loving myself, I miss being a parent I'm proud of being, I miss understanding my talents, I miss inspiration, I miss living fearlessly, I miss ME.

An issue with being concerned for others more than yourself is the inability to look at yourself and identify what is important.  I think this happens a lot in abusive relationships.  When one sees or hears of a story of a battered woman who would not leave her abuser, the natural question is, "Why won't she leave him?!"  We are consumed with questions.  It seems so silly.  When a person is ravaged - verbally and physically, why don't they simply walk away from the abuse?

After 43 years, I have my own answer.  Comfort.  Even abuse becomes comfortable if that's all you know, if it's the only "consistent" throughout your life.  Being overlooked, out shined, unheard, unappreciated, blamed, kicked, taken advantage of, etc, etc, etc becomes part of your story.  It became part of my story.  At least it was until anger burst into my house and screamed into my face, "WHY ARE YOU STILL HERE????".

Why was I there?  Why was I content to fold myself into the fetal position and take the kicks again and again from people who didn't even deserve to share my personal space?  Why was I a willing participant?  Why was I CHOOSING to allow my life to transform into a story of woe?

So here I am:  43, single, mother, and laughing.  Somewhere inside, anger is transforming into hope, inspiration, fulfillment, strength, resolve, love, and understanding.

I'm taking stride along a new path, able to appreciate where I've been and excited about where I'm going.  Wanna come with?

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