I find myself lying fully awake in bed.
I’ll roll over and go back to sleep…
I remain awake.
This time I try to lay flat on my back and breathe consciously, relaxing each body part as I would were I pregnant and preparing for birth. This has worked in the past for insomnia.
No. Not this time…
My mind wanders. It is filled with unwelcome thoughts, anxieties, concerns that I cannot rid myself of, no matter how hard I try.
And I realize about an hour into the experience that I am…
Not depressed, not slipping into some kind of winter-is-near blues, and not fraught with cabin fever (I am highly sociable, so cabin fever strikes me a bit sooner than it would strike most if I don’t get out and about regularly).
No, I am angry.
The kind of anger one is often completely unaware of, opting to smile and try every day to focus on the positive—because there truly is so much positive to focus on. The kind of anger one does not acknowledge because one hates whining and complaining and general negativity with a passion, and does not want to engage in such behaviour themselves.
It is easier to ignore or stifle a dull and almost unnoticeable ache. We convince ourselves that it really is nothing at all, and it is simply for the greater good to pretend it’s not there.
If I ignore it, it will go away…
But it is not for the greater good, because it causes harm. It causes a slow decrease of mobility and happiness, a zapping of energies, a draining of life.
You see, anger turned inward becomes depression.
Show me a depressed person and I can almost guarantee that they are angry about something in their lives but don’t realize it or don’t want to admit it.
I am angry. Not as much as I was at roughly 4:30am through the simple process of acknowledging it, but I am angry.
Not lashing out angry, not I-want-a-divorce angry, not screaming and throwing things and blowing things up angry.
But things wound me, and I stifle the hurt, because it seems silly. Except it doesn’t go away.
So I lay there in the wee hours of morning, aware of my anger. Finally aware of my anger. Able to face each aspect of my life that is hurting me and acknowledge that I am bloody pissed off about every single one. Mainly because I am responsible for my own emotions, my own happiness, my own health.
It felt good. Just to face it.
And I cried.
Not out loud, but tears ran down my cheeks and my throat hurt, in the dark, in my bed.
I don’t blame anyone for my anger. Life hurts us sometimes. We hurt each other. If you have any kind of relationship with another human being (marriage, parenthood, friendship), you will feel hurt sometimes. Unless you are a sociopath, but that’s an entirely different subject… I am angry, and I am the only one who can deal with that. This is the first time I can truly say that I have looked at things that are upsetting me, and have not blamed. Because my happiness is my responsibility. Plain and simple. It always will be.
I fell back asleep. Finally. The last numbers I saw on our clock were 5:00.
My alarm woke me at 6:00am. My intention while setting it the previous evening had been to get up and dive into a workout—you know, take life by the balls and conquer. I realized it was also a form of avoiding what I needed to deal with: the thing inside me that was making me feel not-so-good lately. The thing I couldn’t quite put my finger on and had even begun to fear a little.
I stepped into the living room, and rolled out my yoga mat. I inhaled deeply, and focused on the energy surrounding me and within me, contemplating each breath as it came and went. I centred and grounded myself.
I faced each direction, with gratitude and thanks. I prayed, if you could call it that, to Whoever/Whatever surrounds me. I was sincere. I sat down, and I meditated. I breathed. I focused. I let go. I welcomed. I was still. I let go of anger. I inhaled and I exhaled. Deeply.
I was honest. With myself. With God/Goddess/Universe/Spirit whatever the heck you want to call it.
And I felt better. I feel better…
I kissed my daughters as they woke.
I made breakfast without feeling the weight of the world on my shoulders.
It has been a long time since I have done that.
Speak to your god, your goddess, your inner self. Be truthful. Be real.
Believe me when I say that it works.
Life is constant growth, constant change. We never reach The Point of Perfection where the struggles, whether inward or outward, cease to exist. Never. But we can try. We can keep climbing when the mountain gets steeper, when the rocks seem to be falling in our path. Or we can quit right there, and miss out on who we can become if we just deal with it all and keep going, however difficult it may seem at times.
I am lucky. I am blessed. But sometimes I hurt, regardless. Sometimes I feel alone. Sometimes I feel like a failure, despite what the rational side of me (and many supportive loved ones) may observe. It is important not to ignore these moments, these times when if we are honest, all isn’t well, even if it is. It is important to face things, to understand them, and to move on—or move through, really…
That is what I aim to do. That is what I will continue to do.
Because it feels like the ice has melted on top, like when a river begins to thaw at winter’s end, and we see the water running through and under the chunks of ice that are still packed into one another, yet breaking apart slowly. I feel as though my ice is breaking apart, bit by bit. Like the simple acknowledgement of buried anger was what caused it all to CRACK! on top, and let the water begin to flow again on the surface… It feels… warmer. Warmer.
On this windy day, when almost hurricane-force winds are blowing the last of the leaves off the maples outside, before the snow arrives and the winter freezes our corner of the world, my spring has come inside.
My spring has come inside.