What Anger Wants

Wrestling my demons, as I do. Sometimes, more than others. Anger like righteousness. The lines I draw in the sand are constantly redrawn, a little closer, a little farther away. Rules adjusted to the mysterious tides in me.

This morning we walked out of the vet’s office after waiting for over an hour. Doe couldn’t have anything to eat until after she’d had two tests, given an hour apart. She gets sick if she goes too long without eating. I explained this to the techs, but it got to be eleven-thirty, and still they weren’t ready for her, which meant she wouldn’t have anything to eat until two at best. I’d called and spoken to someone. I’d explained the situation to the doctor. When I asked to come back another day, they said they had no early morning hours, so it would be the same next time. The medication would have to be thawed and I would need to call, and remind someone to do it, if I wanted it to be thawed before we got there.

That’s when I lost it. I had to call them to remind them to thaw the medication?? That’s when they crossed the line that had been creeping up as we sat in the waiting room for over an hour, Doe hungry, and me worried that she was going to start to vomit and not be able to stop.

But I mean to write about my anger, the way it comes up, and gets me into trouble. Not terrible trouble, necessarily, but the kind where I’m charging down the sidewalk, alone, because everyone else is wrong. I think my father was like this. I think tendencies like this are inherited. It’s a form of insanity. I wish being aware of it made it easier to stop.

There are days when I feel angry at everyone. Never Doe or the cats. But they’re easy. People are less agreeable.

K. is coming to stay tonight. All week she has changed her mind. She was coming and then not coming. I don’t think I’ve slept eight hours since Monday. She’s driven me crazy. But she is a dear friend of mine. At the bottom of it all is worry. Anxiety. It’s too much for me to handle, and too much for her to attempt. She’s unstable and traveling with her elderly dog who is incontinent and blind. I’m afraid for her, and overwhelmed at the prospect of having them stay here with Doe and me and three cats in this small apartment.

Anger is the voice that reaches through my quietness to shout. “Enough!”

Anger wants me to live in the desert where there are no irritants for many miles other than snakes and probably scorpions. I have fantasies of silence and privacy and nothing to stir the ugliness in me. A peaceful place inside myself and out. It’s the biggest dream I have.

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