Last week, I wrote a post in which I admitted my confusion with happiness and how I would like, very much, for someone to sneak the secret to being happy into my pocket. Because, let’s face it, it must be a BIG secret or everyone would be happy. There’s got to be a code, or a manual, or a key to a secret room, or, I don’t know, something. But no, it’s all DaVinci Code-like secrets and not letting go of what they know. They are holding back on me, these happy people, and I still can’t figure out why.
But there is another emotion I don’t understand, and this one is even more perplexing to me. I cannot simply comprehend anger. I never have. For my entire life, I contend, I have never felt anger. Not once. Moreover, seeing anger in others scares me. When I see someone yelling, I immediately recoil. I feel myself become smaller in an effort to make myself invisible, thereby deflecting the angry person’s wrath away from me, even if I had absolutely nothing to do with the inception of said wrath. I seem to absorb the angry peron’s vibes as quickly as they are cast off in an effort to diffuse them. It sounds crazy, I know, but I have such a problem with anger that I don’t want anyone to be angry. I don’t want to see anger, I don’t want to sense it in anyone else, and I certainly don’t want to feel it first-hand.
I am, however, acquainted with anger’s cousins and second cousins and have felt all of them enter my body and cause my blood to come to a slow simmer. I know irritation, something humans often bestow upon me, especially while driving in New Jersey traffic. If you can drive in New Jersey traffic and not be irritated, you will automatically be made a saint. I’m sure the pope, if he were driving in this mess, would agree. Seriously, people, the turn signal is there for a reason. I also know frustration all too well, often directed at inanimate objects like my printer but more often turned inward because I can’t do something as well as I would like, or I couldn’t write a sentence as well as it sounds in my head.
But anger? No. I have never felt the roiling, boiling, overpowering emotional force of anger, one that seems to begin in the pits of someone’s stomach and then rise up, like vomit, gathering speed as it races up toward the mouth before spewing out its vile, bile-infused venom. And I have never felt like I was missing out on anything. Who would want such a thing to occur in her body? Not me. But people much more wise than I am tell me that holding anger in can cause tremendous harm to one’s psyche. I suppose that’s true. I suppose letting out all manner of emotions, as opposed to keeping them in the holding cell I like to call my body, is probably a good thing. But anger? Not just yet. Maybe I’ll start yelling at my printer a little louder, though.