To my great surprise, I ended up throwing a temper tantrum yesterday. Almost like a two-year-old, only without the lying down part to accompany the flailing and the kicking and the screaming parts. As my regular readers know, I’ve been dealing with the aftereffects of a codependency, the last in a long line of them. Every day since the end of it, especially over the past few weeks, despite my pain, at least one positive thing or another has come from it to add to my personal growth, so overall I’ve been encouraged. The one emotion I really hadn’t felt, however, was anger. The subject just hadn’t come up. Denial, yes, and depression, even bargai…. HEY. In the middle of my tantrum I actually stopped and laughed when I realized that I was experiencing another of Kubler-Ross’s five stages of grief. What initiated the whole thing was that I’d hit kind of a sadder patch than usual and thought I’d do a quick bit of exercise, just to start the blood pumping the oxygen to my brain, you know, kick those endorphins in the heiney to get ’em moving. What I didn’t expect was the fountain of rage that erupted the moment I began running in place. It took me completely by surprise.
I won’t tell you about the tantrum in too much detail because it was ugly. But I think it’s important that you know it involved several finger-pointing death pronouncements, very specific curses invoking present and future woe and abject despair, a lot of under-the-breath shrieking, and about a thousand furiously spewed variations of the word f*ck (not written out because there are sensitive eyes reading this, you’re welcome), which blistered the air as noun, verb, adjective, and even adverb–sometimes forming entire sentences in and of itself. It’s a handy word. If I’d had a cauldron I would have been launching bats’ wings and newts’ eyes into it, and anything else that moved. If I’d suddenly developed the ability to shoot thunderbolts from my fingertips you would’ve been able to see the sky light up from all the way over in Norway. Some of those thunderbolts would have been directed at me, as well. It was an all-encompassing fury, one size fits all. Not one iota of the above paragraph is an exaggeration.
I tell you that to tell you this: that massive ball o’ rage was inside of me, roasting my innards, and it was time to bring it up and out. I didn’t know it was time–in fact, I didn’t even realize it was there, but God did, and in a quiet moment when I was alone, a safe space was created in which I could express it. I remember when I first discovered this haven. We were between houses and living with friends and I had reached my breaking point. I went down to their basement one day and suddenly let loose to the heavens–under my breath so no one could hear me, though I’m pretty sure the angels were covering their ears–all the bitterness and sadness and frustration I’d been holding in. I was stunned when, even in the midst of the worst of it, I could feel God calmly listening to me. There was no sense of disapproval of my language (I was a sailor in a past life, after all), only the distinct and comforting feeling that I was being heard underneath all my vitriol. Truly heard. Heeded, even. And since that time I’ve known that there is a place I can rage; a safe haven to express every inch of blackness in my heart, without having to edit, without fearing judgment. A heavenly Cone of Silence, if you will. The most miraculous thing about this Cone is that you leave your feeling of rage inside it when you go. Afterward, on the outside of it, you can observe your anger, become its Watcher, without taking on the physical emotion attached to it. If you start feeling it in your body (which is where emotion shows up), back into the Cone you can go, thus keeping your loved ones safe from the bulk of your wrath. It’s a great system.
It’s interesting, this happening on the heels of the dream I had two nights ago. In the dream, a man, around my age now, was sitting on a bench in a white room. This man was me. In his hands was a book that said “Stitchery” on the binding, and on its pages were embroidery patterns. He opened it and said, “Well, I have to do something while I wait,” and when I, the dreamer, walked over to him, I could see that the left page was entitled “Unforgiveness” and contained a long list of items that were checked off in red ink. On the opposite page was the title “Forgiveness,” and this had only one item beneath it, which was also checked in red ink. Since I had prayed earlier that day to be clued in to at least one of the lessons I’m to learn in this lifetime, it seemed pretty clear upon waking that this was it. I’ll be honest, though… I’m not sure what it means. I can come up with conventional answers, but they don’t seem right, somehow. This is something I’ll have to let simmer for awhile.
And “simmer” is right. This is the third time in my life that I’ve needed the Cone of Silence, and I’m going to let this new flow of anger do its transformative work, just as it’s done in the past. I’m already feeling the healing effects of yesterday’s cathartic tantrum to God–and last night, I had a series of three nightmares that brought even more gunk up. I have a feeling that as my intuition works through the “unforgiveness” and “forgiveness” aspects of the first dream, the various elements of last night’s nightmares, and any anger that arises in my waking hours–let alone whatever mysterious else is on the docket–I will be spending quite a bit of time with God, allowing things to sort themselves out and getting healed up. Believe me, I welcome every minute of it. Love to you all today! xo