04.07.17

3 || ANGER MANAGEMENT

Hey there tiny me,

How's it going? You accidentally fart in the middle of your fifth grade class yet? That was a rough one. 

Anyway, not here to talk about farting (surprisingly). Actually wanted to chat with you about your anger problems. I know, I know, this is a hell of a detour from those last two letters, but it's something that's presently significant in my life, so I figure you should know about it too. 

I'll warn you now, you're going to go into high school and be considered the chronically grumpy one in the friend group. Don't take this personally because it's the furthest thing from personal. The truth is, you are grumpy. And it's funny. People like you for it (for the most part). You're a bitch. You rarely have time for bullshit and that's going to be a characteristic that sticks with you. When you go to college people will call you "grandpa" for the same reason. And I just want to tell you, despite everything, that I'm proud of you. You become a resilient little fighter.  You will get knocked down a lot, but you'll always get back up. That's not easy, so don't ever forget your strength. 

But here's where your line is going to start getting murky: you will be tough and heartless about things that you should be neither tough nor heartless about. According to your current therapist, a lovely woman named Natasha who likes to squint at you a lot as she tries to piece together your deeply battered soul, you have some serious anger triggers. They are the following: feeling unwanted, feeling unimportant, feeling excluded and feeling unheard. So, in short, you're a human being. 

Except you have a pretty glaring error in your makeup. You struggle to understand that, often times, when someone close to you makes you feel like one of the above, it is in no way personal. You feel unwanted, and so you project that thought onto them and assume that they do not want you when, in fact, they are probably just dealing with their own shit, etc, etc. When you're stressed, you have a tendency to become unbearably selfish. This makes your triggers sky rocket. It's like poking a tiny blonde bear. And Coco, for the love of god, no one likes a tiny blonde bear. 

So this is your biggest fault. As soon as you're triggered, you become cold and mean as all hell. You drag people down. The closer the person is to you, the worse they're going to get it. You are going to sabotage relationships time and time again because you can't hold it together. Finally, there at the end, you're going to sabotage the most important relationship you've ever had and it's going to feel like someone scooped your heart out of your chest and shoved it down a sink-erator. You will lose the love of your life and your best friend to your anger. Someone who truly deserved the world and someone you wanted to give the world to. But you fucked up and let me tell you, the loss of the relationship will hurt. Bad. But the loss of his presence and his person will hurt worse.

However, here's the good news. You're actively working on it. It took you a while, but you're doing it. And you're getting better, a lot better. You're nicer. You're thoughtful. You've stopped becoming mad, and instead you self-reflect. Your empathy is back and your coldness is gone. Your bitchiness has subsided drastically. You don't snip, you don't critique. Your sarcasm is here to stay, but don't forget to embrace that because without it your personality would probably be comparable to a brick with a face. You're making things happen because you want to be better, and that's admirable. Sitting down with a therapist and a psychiatrist for the first time is intimidating, but it will alter the course of your life. 

So I guess here's my simple advice to you: hold on and be kind. Always. We are all doing our best, you included. But your anger is a choice, even when it seems so deeply rooted into you (and at times it will seem overwhelming). As you hit middle school, then high school and eventually college you will firmly accept it, because you want to be tough. But you can be thoughtful and tough. No one is here to hurt you. They're here to love you, but they need to feel loved too. You have an innate ability to find dark in circumstance, pushing back and putting up walls at even the smallest signs of hurt. You box out the people who are most significant. Or you did. That's the thing, you can change. I've seen it. I'm living it.

I wish I could give my clear headedness to you, so you would never have to feel this pain as you grew up, but I understand the limitations of reality and also time travel has yet to exist (c'mon science, pull your shit together god damn it). These days, I have begun to reiterate to myself: "I want to be a place of comfort. I want to be a place of comfort." I'll say it over and over again for tens of minutes at a time. I advise you do the same. Be a place of comfort for those you love. Second chances are an important part of learning, but you may not always get one. When your anger boils, ask yourself if it's for a valid reason. Chances are it isn't, and it certainly is never worth losing the most important person in your life for, so don't make the same mistake twice. There is so much opportunity for happiness and love. Fight for it always and don't ever forget that.

Love always,

Coco