One life event, more than others, was a big fire that burned me to the ground. What built around the ruins of my former self were vines of vindictive anger. They grew easily because the root system was healthy and robust beneath the flames. The fire helped fertilize the soil so when they grew, they grew fast and strong.
Everyone reacts differently with loss. First, my father, then, my first son. I was lost when dad died. We were allies. I feel he understood me better than anyone alive ever could. Partners in pain. He went through plenty of trauma in his brief 59 year stay on this planet. Losing him threw me into the wilderness. Losing my son, well, that threw me out of the stratosphere so I spun aimlessly in space – a vast unknown. Only the tethers of that angry vine brought me back to solid ground. I became mean, and delighted in it. It felt right. I was justified. Anger became firmly established as my modus operandi.
Let’s review, shall we?
- childhood abuse
- parental neglect
- numerous unhealthy relationships (friendships and boyfriends. Looking at you, Tina, Chrissie, Seb and Owen)
- dead dad
- dead firstborn child
I’ve been told, and absorbed through various media, that if I were to remain angry for the rest of my life, I would be completely justified. I mean, look at my impressive list of pain! The thing is, Anger keeps me hurt, and collects hurts as I move through life. So I am never free of pain.
Pain is a difficult companion to leave behind. It wants to be the centre of attention. I want it to be present only when necessary. Anger, and pain, have made my life a struggle. I would like to enjoy my life without faking my way through. I want to genuinely enjoy my children, and not just be a madame of the rule book, an enforcer. Yes, I lost a child. That pain is part of me, but I want to reject the anger that keeps the wound fresh daily.