Sometimes you get angry. I mean really angry…as angry as a wet cat. Here you see Persimmon as he followed me up and down our driveway. It was a rainy afternooon and he was soaking wet…and not too happy about it. As you can tell from his face he has gotten a little beat up recently. We do not know what happened, but he was a scabby mess. He was mad that I was walking in the rain instead of sitting on the front porch rubbing his head. I don’t know what he was so mad about, but he spent his time telling me all about it. It was obvious he was not happy at all.
There are all sorts of things that make us angry – injustice, unkindess, cruelty, crime, poverty – the list can on some days feel endless. On a bad day when nothing seems to be going right, anything and everything can push the anger button. It’s almost as if your soul screams for justice and control, and when you don’t get it anger takes over. Anger is the result of unmet expectations…unmet because they were not communicated, not understood, not fulfilled. Whatever the reason, when we feel overlooked or forgotten, neglected or abused, anger rises to the top and rears it’s ugly head. Sometimes it is a persistent emotion, other times it subsides quickly. Sometimes anger is a constant companion, other times it is a bully who follows us home and steals our joy.
So how do you deal with anger? How do you handle it when you are beyond your limit and need to clam down? Do you throw things, hit walls, stomp around or yell loudly? Do you withdraw and pout, withdraw and get quiet, withdraw and sulk? Or maybe you clean, or run, or rearrange your closet, or clean out the garage, or go to a movie to change your mood? All of these reactions demonstrate that letting the anger out is a way to overcome it’s power. When we release the energy our anger creates we remove it’s ability to control. Depending upon the source of your anger, it can be easier said than done to work yourself out of rage. Sometimes the emotion takes control and you have to let it out to get relief.
As Persimmon and I walked the driveway, he calmed down. As we headed back to the front porch, he headed straight to the food bowl and ate a snack. He sat still while I rubbed his head, and sat still for a while until he was calm. He ended up taking a nap and resting the afternoon away. He found a way to calm down, relax and let the emotion of being wet fade away. Maybe like a wet cat we need to find a simple way to overcome our anger.