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Am I Angry? Yes, I’m Angry

And so I’m angry. I’m not angry at anyone. I’m not even angry at myself (which is a big step forward). I’m just angry that those things became a normal part of my life. It’s hard to look back and think about the moments that I may have lost. But I’m also motivated.

You want to know something that continuously drives me in my ongoing struggle with anxiety and depression…anger.

I know that doesn’t exactly sound like something that should drive me or even something that is healthy to have as a driving force but let me explain a bit…

This weekend we’re are taking a trip for a day and it will conclude with a family Christmas themed outing and I am very excited about it! Like that can’t wait for it to get here type of excitement. It’s a place that has fake snow (this is Texas), a hayride with “millions of lights”, and so many other activities that make this a Christmas wonderland. I refer to myself as a Christmas elf so I can’t wait and I really can’t wait to enjoy that with my wife and kids.

This morning my son asked me a question that stemmed from a misunderstanding of something that I said yesterday. I responded in kindness and love because I immediately realized that I yesterday I probably wasn’t as clear as I could have been. My brain was in a bit of a fog yesterday so I didn’t function at a level that I typically do.

These seem like two very common things that happen in the life of people. Family times to fun attractions and dealing with miscommunications but this feels relatively new to me; thus the anger. I’m angry because of the activities and experiences that I have allowed my anxiety and depression rob me of.

I think back to so many times that all I wanted was to sit at home and be left alone. I didn’t want to be around people, especially not large groups of people. Crowds bothered me and there was no excitement to be had. If you’ll allow for an overused Christmas analogy, I was more often a Scrooge who would say “bah humbug” to the family activity than I was the kid with wide eyed excitement for my time to make memories with my family. It wasn’t always a hard and fast rule, but it moments of anxiety and depression (which became more frequent and intense until I sought out help) it was certainly true.

If you’ll allow for an overused Christmas analogy, I was more often a Scrooge who would say “bah humbug” to the family activity than I was the kid with wide eyed excitement for my time to make memories with my family.

For many people who know me and who read this I know that will come as a surprise. I’m very social, very high energy, and typically excited. But I hope that fact will show the power of anxiety and depression. It can take someone like me and drive them to solitude. Not for any specific reason beyond “it’s all too much”. So I chose too many days to stay at home. Too many days to miss out on activities. Too many opportunities missed.

I think back to the times that someone, typically my wife and children as it is those closest to you that get hurt the most, misunderstood something I said. I speak faster than almost anyone around me and my mind is typically working even quicker so when I think I’m being clear I am anything but. However, something would well up inside of me that is hard to describe. It’s a frustration on a level of being misunderstood again and the only way that I knew how to express frustration was through anger. It was an anger that came from a lack of self awareness about the interactions of how people communicate and the differences in how one person crafts messages and other people receive messages. I can remember feeling a constant state of frustration that others didn’t automatically know what I wanted. For someone who claimed to be seeking the happiness of others over his own that was incredibly self centered. It started from a dark place and only led to a darker one.

For someone who claimed to be seeking the happiness of others over his own that was incredibly self centered. It started from a dark place and only led to a darker one.

And so I’m angry. I’m not angry at anyone. I’m not even angry at myself (which is a big step forward). I’m just angry that those things became a normal part of my life. It’s hard to look back and think about the moments that I may have lost. But I’m also motivated.

It doesn’t mean that everything will always work out and that I’ll never have a moment I need to myself or a miscommunication that leads to frustration but it does mean that I am constantly examining myself and my surroundings and habits to see where the personal pitfalls of anxiety and depression may be creeping in to wrap me in the darkness that I have often felt.

These examples are extremely personal but I encourage you to seek out those areas of your life that anxiety and depression have affected you the most and constantly examine those areas. It is so easy to slip back into those same habits and thought patters. They feel so natural and so normal.

The isolation.

The negative self-talk.

The facade we put on for others.

The walls in our relationships.

The words we speak that don’t truly reveal our heart.

The thoughts we are too afraid to admit that we have…

I’m angry at what I’ve missed. But I don’t rest in that anger, I’m motivated by it. I’m moved to action that works to drive me forward, drive me outward. Sometimes that action is physical. Sometimes that action is introspective. But it’s always forward. It’s always upward. It’s always toward loving myself more and loving those around me rightly.

3 thoughts on “Am I Angry? Yes, I’m Angry Leave a comment

  1. Although i think that i understand the way you are thinking, perhaps you are in a middle path. Motivation is good. Happyness is better. You cannot be happy if in anger. Right? But if you are happy isn’t it easier to be and stay motivated?

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    • I think you make a good point, George. Happiness is better than anger and I feel that I am on a much happier path than I have been. I use anger here though to signify that there is an emotion associated with my moving forward. I am motivated by the happiness of looking forward, but also the anger of looking back. Obviously I don’t write the post to say that anger has overtaken me (nor do I think that is what you are saying), but I would be lying to deny the portion of myself that is angry about what has been missed. That portion, however, is not stronger than the happiness that I continue to pursue. My main motivation in writing about this emotion was to be truthful about something that I have felt lately as I continue to learn about myself within the bounds of my anxiety and depression. I have spent a very long time denying many truths about myself, my actions, and my emotions. It has been just over a year since I was diagnosed with anxiety (which I suspected) and depression (which was unexpected because I didn’t understand what depression really was) so much of what I write is the unraveling of years of denial and the building upon the truth behind so many of my expressions.

      Liked by 1 person

      • It took a while to think an answer as similarly I tend to deny and burying feelings and bad memories. Eventually i feel that i have to accept them. I don’t know if also have ro judge people that as you say created myself, actions and emotions. And anger as your original post correctly speak about. Perhaps, it was motibational though, it was more like don’t caring any more. Not even forgiving to be honest. Just accepting as part of my life and letting them behind until a conversation or whatever bring them back in life. And there, anger appeae again but in a good day i usually manage to just drop anger and people or situations causing this. Just ignoring without hiding that behavior behind being just nice.

        Liked by 1 person

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