Friday, September 2, 2011

Anger Management

Growing up I was always known as the calm one, my sister on the other hand was the hot head. I was the pillar that people leaned on and expected to hold it all together whenever there was a crisis. I was Switzerland. I rarely took sides or placed blame. I processed things logically and was a voice of reason. I was always cool and collected, almost laid back to a fault, just drinking it all in without judgement.

My sister's reactions to the very same things were always much different, almost comical. She can fly off the handle at the drop of a dime and cause a whirlwind of drama in seconds flat. She is the eye of the storm that takes out everything in her path. She is in no way a horrible person but when triggered can say some of the most heinous things imaginable. I learned quickly not to take any of it personally, it is just her way of dealing with stressful events. Who am I to say that it's wrong, it's just her way. I've come to understand it and accept it in the name of sibling love.

She was always the fighter in the family and I was the lover. I could impartially work out the difficulties and be the peace to her wartime. Push me to my limit, I can take it every time...well almost every time. I have a great ability to internalize stress. I'm like a great dam inside capable of holding back even the roughest of waters. But on occasion, even my so-called impermeable concrete shell fails for one reason or another and I find myself overwhelmed with anger and spite.

There is no rhyme or reason to what sets me off. It could be a deliberate act of sabotage by an outside influence, inadequate emotional maintenance on my part or simply because I've exceeded my capacity to hold it all back. Everyone has their triggers and individual boiling points. It's not something that I am proud of and I take no pleasure losing control, but sometimes even the mightiest fall.

When the breaking point comes there is no stopping the rage. It's an uncontrollable frenzy of hostility. It shocks me to know that I am capable of such contempt and disrespect. It's only when I become so frustrated with a situation that I resort to this kind of behavior. It is a point when I can no longer rationally "do the right thing." Usually that is all it takes, a few minutes of mayhem and it's out of my system for good. My reserves have been emptied and I'm free.

I never thought of myself as someone to hold a grudge or allow myself to become so consumed with negativity that it left me all black and sullen inside. It's not who I am, yet it is something that I've let become a part of me lately. I've allowed it to change my psyche and crush my spirit.

That's unacceptable and I'm moving on. I've surrendered and I've got to let you go. As much as I may love the idea of you, I love myself more.

Thank you Siddharta for reminding me that it really is that easy to forget.

"Anger will never disappear so long as thoughts of resentment are cherished in the mind. Anger will disappear just as soon as thoughts of resentment are forgotten."

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