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Posts Tagged ‘anger’

Not proud of myself.

I’m not proud of myself today. In fact, I’m actually feeling lower than I have felt in a long time.

What I’m about to write is not in hopes of getting comments to excuse my behavior. Nor is it to make myself feel better. Instead it’s to remember. To document and learn from this moment.

I could sit here and write up the whole background – the flurry of excuses – I was sick for a few days, high anxiety after not feeling baby girl kick for a day or so – exhaustion – the Husband working late every night and not helping around the house at all – cooped up in the house working from home for 13 hours straight – pouring cold rain that Bentley wouldn’t even step out to go to the bathroom in. It really doesn’t matter though. We all have bad days, but that doesn’t give us the excuse to mistreat others.

Around 7pm Bentley went into wacko mode. I’m talking he slept solidly from Wednesday night to Thursday morning then spent all Thursday day quietly laying with me while I worked on the couch. By 7pm he wanted nothing more than to play with me, grabbing toys and trying to entice me. I’ll be honest, I just wasn’t up for it. I kept saying no and nudging him away and he’d try again.

Next he went to more extreme tactics. One of his favorite things to do when he wants attention is to find something of ours in another room and come barreling in where we are with it in his mouth pretending to chew and throw it around. The comical thing is he doesn’t actually chew it – if he wanted to he’d hide with it – instead it’s strictly to get our attention. So a few times he grabbed things and I would get up and take them away and say no. Finally, he tried to grab my computer cord so I grabbed his collar, said no and told him to sit. He quickly sat, I think secretly hoping he’d done enough to engage me to play. I looked him in the eyes and just kept saying no and let go of his collar. Next he over excitedly leaped onto me and bopped his nose into my glasses.

I know it wasn’t malicious. The Husband and him play too often like this where he’ll have one of his toys and hold it above him and entice Bentley to jump on him and rough house but it’s a no-no with me.

I was set off. That pounce on my belly made my blood boil and I reacted. I screamed at him. I grabbed him by the collar and rushed him upstairs and into his crate, slamming the crate door closed.

For someone it sounds like nothing – I didn’t hit him or continuously scream at him. For others, I’m sure it sounds worse than I’m even thinking – I screamed and lost my temper with a dog who trusts me and was just trying to play.

Rather than just let him out, I knew I needed to calm down. I sat on my floor and I immediately began to cry. Out of shame mostly.

For the first time I realized there’s a meanness in me. I was cruel and mean to Bentley and I didn’t need to be. I reacted in a way that I am truly ashamed and embarrassed of, and most of all my heart hurts thinking about how he felt.

I think I cried harder last night than I have in a long, long time.

After about 5 -10 minutes I let him out quietly, and sat on the floor. At first he started to run back downstairs, but he stopped when I didn’t follow, and came over to me and just looked at me. One quick lick away of my tears, and a semi-snuggle against me before he tried to entice me to play again I hope means he hasn’t totally lost trust in me.

The truth is, would it have been that hard to play with him for 10 minutes? Would it have been that hard to grab his leash and take him on a quick walk around the block, rainy night and all?

We all make mistakes. No one can be the perfect parent (be it dog or human) ever. But at the same time, acting and responding in anger is something I truly don’t want to do. The way it makes me feel hours and even a day later hurts enough inside that I know it’s a priority for me to work on.

So today I will say I am not proud of myself and I’m ashamed of how I acted. But I promise myself, and Bentley, and my future daughter, that I will work on my patience and temper.

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I have a new rule for myself. In the future when I am angry about something, or need to make a decision, I need to stop my mind and go for a workout.

I won’t pretend it makes everything better and you always magically have the answer after.

However, it helps. A lot.

This morning my toilet exploded. When I say exploded, I mean exploded.

Amidst many many motherf*ers and far worse being shouted from my mouth I just lost patience. I don’t want to deal with this crap on my own.

I was pretty down about the whole situation all the while I was rushing at the same time to meet my friend A to take the 9:30am spin class at our gym.

I went into the spin class pretty livid and frustrated. I have to say, it helped. My anger slowly turned into an action plan with every painful hill we climbed. Everything isn’t solved and all peachy, but at least I feel less “I’m not dealing with this” and more “Even though this sucks, I have to deal with it and here’s how”.

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Surprise! B and I got into a nasty fight last night.

At first I was shocked when I got into work, how everything escalated so quickly, but then I’m not really. We do this, we go in circles. Except this time I don’t think the circle will continue.

I should have seen it coming with my moods recently. I should have known I’d pick a fight.

And maybe I exploded. And maybe it seems out of nowhere to him. But for me, I finally let it out.

Yes we care about each other. But you know what? I’m tired of making excuses for him. In the last year he has been selfish, he has hurt my feelings countless times, and he hasn’t been a friend when I need him to be. I wouldn’t tolerate the way he treats me from anyone else, so why have I let it be OK with him?

Funny but the actual dinner was nice. The war started via text after (which is always just fantastic). And I woke up this morning feeling angry and frustrated because I didn’t say what I needed to say. I didn’t say that this argument has been a year in the making but last night that small irritation sent it spiraling.

But this morning he gave me that opportunity. First with this text, “Do I need to worry about getting all my belongings back? Because I am.”

Luckily it was only seconds of my fury building as a result of that asshole text before the second text came through, “Also, I have to know, before this whole fight last night, would you have said, ‘I don’t feel like ur the person I knew’ ” [something I had said in my final text last night]

I know the gear text was his immature way of re-opening conversation, of showing his anger and being an a$$.

So finally FINALLY for the first time since we have broken up I said it all. I was always so fearful of losing our friendship if I was truly honest with him, and I may have now but you know what? I’m tired.

I said how shitty it was that we broke up over the phone while he was across the country and he came home “so upset” but didn’t even try to have a conversation in person with me about it.

I said how shitty some of his tactless comments were after our breakup. Or that packed in the gear I’m borrowing for my Patagonia trip? 5 condoms. That he didn’t mean to leave in there.

How on his birthday I took him to a nice dinner and got him a nice card and he was so thankful because no one else did anything for him on that day. But on my birthday? I got a “Happy Birthday text”.

How when he knew I went to a funeral two weeks ago he just said he was thinking of me but never asked who it was, what happened, if I was OK or needed to talk.

How when he found out my beach house was sold (he’s the one person outside my family who truly understands what that place means to me) I got a text that was basically “it’ll be ok”. Not do you need to talk, not a call, not a follow-up.

That every time I’m mad or upset, he manipulates it into me being the wrong one and somehow I find myself letting whatever it was I was mad about or upset about go.

So yes, he isn’t the same person I knew last year. This past year I have made excuse after excuse for him. I don’t even know why. Pride? To not let go? To make it seem like I’m stronger to everyone around me? But I told him that yes, last night’s fight I exploded, but it was a year in the making.

He hasn’t said a word back.

So fuck you B. Fuck You.

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Early this morning my phone started vibrating. I was confused to begin with because I only keep it on vibrate during work hours but I realized quickly I had forgotten to change it back. I ran over to get it thinking it was my alarm and then saw that it was half hour before my alarm was meant to go off. It was B calling.

I decided not to pick up. I knew he was likely just calling to say hi, or that he was on his walk to work or that something reminded him of me. I made myself go back to sleep and woke up to my alarm and his voicemail half hour later.

I was right. The blustery drizzle day reminded him of one of the nights we were in Kilkenny.  Then he mentioned again wanting to get together for dinner when work stuff calmed down. I texted him when I woke back up to say that when he called I was still sleeping and we had our normal back and forth banter and then this text came through.

“I really miss talking to you more often. You don’t get to talk as much when you don’t see someone.”

And it made me miss talking to him more often. A lot. Honestly, sometimes on a crappy day the first person I want to crumble into is B.

Anyway, I didn’t focus on it the rest of the day because I was too busy getting slammed at work. Think last week and now add in some extra drama. Sometimes it feels like I’m working with the gossip girl cast. Only they are 40-55 year old women. It’s getting old.

When I got home after the long day to change I realized that first I was feeling pretty exhausted, then I got my period and to add to my annoyances, I left my phone at work.

I headed off to boxing for my second session. While it was amazing per usual, my body wasn’t cooperating. I really wanted to just take my irritation at missing B, my frustrations with work, and just all of my stress from the day overall and pour it into boxing and yet my body just wouldn’t. Towards the end he just looked at me and said, “You’re totally gassed.” He was right. Everything – mentally and physically I just felt like I was done.

So now I’m home, laying in bed after taking some NyQuil and hoping that for the first time in the past few nights I can just get a good night’s sleep. Tomorrow is a new day.

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The last two weeks I haven’t been myself. My posts are full of frustration, anger, and irritability.

In 20 days I’ll be 26. I’ve never cared about my age before. If anything I always feel like each year gets better.  But this year to be honest, it’s a little scary.

In 14 days B and I will have been broken up for one year. I’ve let myself “heal” for 1 full year. But something about getting to that 1 year mark without having so much as kissed another guy is getting to me. I’m scared to hit that 1 year milestone.

And so something is nagging me this morning. It’s time to make some changes.

The first few months after the breakup and my 25th birthday I let myself wallow.  And I spent copious amounts of time with friends and family to distract myself. Then I pushed myself to move on – by going on vacations, working to get promoted at work, doing a triathlon, and even trying online dating and going out with 4 different guys. 

Now though I feel like I’m getting really comfortable with my life. I’m sure most people think, but comfortable is a good thing. But is it?

I hate feeling uncomfortable, but I find that’s when the best results occur. I hated getting ready and going out on dates, but after those dates I realize that I still had it, that guys were still attracted and interested in me.

I hate trying new things and I was anxious the first day of boxing. But look where I am now, I LOVE boxing.

I hated being terrified at moments to actually do my first triathlon, and yet it still is one of my favorite, all-time most positive moments of my life.

I need to branch out. I need to push myself to be a little more uncomfortable. Yes, I like that lately I can come home and no one plays a role in what I am doing. But I don’t want to be alone forever.

And I don’t want to just feel comfortable forever. It gets boring. It starts to make me feel a little empty.

So I guess today I’m thinking about what I can do to start pushing myself. To feel happier every day but to ultimately feel happy overall.

I’d like to start my 26th year (my golden 26 on the 26th) in a positive place. And I’d like to make the most of that year.  No more excuses and no more being afraid.

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Tonight will be my last night of boxing. I think my plan is to find out if the trainer is going to run another small group training class or see what options there are for personal training.

After the way I felt last night, I need to add additional strength training or boxing into my life.

I feel in a much better place today.

But last night. Oy. I chose this path and I want to stay in my job. I’m going to have to deal with the ups and downs of a fast-paced, frustrating, cut-throat corporate world. Therefore I need to start figuring out a better way to handle it.

When midnight rolled around last night and I was still responding to emails, I wasn’t too far off from throwing my laptop and stomping on it. Ok so I probably wouldn’t have thrown my laptop (how would I read my favorite blogs?!) but I had such angry energy that it really did freak me out.

That’s not me. I’m normally so even-tempered and rational.

I don’t want to turn into something I’m not. I don’t want my job to change me into someone I don’t want to be and someone who would make me miserable.

So instead I’m going to once again remind myself the benefits of working out and eating healthier. (A plate of chocolate iced brownies for dinner will in fact cause a sugar crash and escalate any temper tantrum you may be having.)

And of connecting more with family and friends. Of the need for yoga and/or meditation. (That’s a toughie.)

I know the answers. Now I just need to start living them.

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Today was a crazy all-out hectic day at work. I worked non-stop (not even a walk around the halls) from 8:30am to 6:30pm. Then I came home. And worked from 7:30pm to almost 11pm. Non-friggan-stop.

And it’s frustrating and exhausting to try to do this from home. It’s beyond inefficient. It’s back and forth and wasting everyone’s time. And it’s just the way it is.

I’m Frustrated. Irritable. Livid. Impatient. Tried of people’s stupidity, inconsiderate nature and just plain idiocy.

I go back and forth between tears of frustration and then just deep dark anger. Like I want to scream and break things and hit until my body is just too tired to move.

I don’t know if it’s the combination of work, eating crap and then not working out that’s causing the severity of this mood. But this anger and this reaction really scares me.

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As I’ve written more and more on this blog I have let my anonymity slip a little bit. I don’t mind, seeing as hopefully no one I know stumbles across it . It’s especially funny because while I don’t want my friends or family reading it (some don’t even know about it), I would be happy to meet in real life/talk with any of my “blog friends”.

Anyway, that’s not the point of the post. I thought of that because I want to write about something I learned from Benny. (I was going to call him “B” again but realized I wrote his name during my tri post.)

Warning: a few of my recent posts were very light-hearted. This one is less so.

It’s so easy when I’m hurt, disappointed or sad to let my emotions turn into ANGER. In every relationship I have had, during a tiff or a larger fight my initial instinct is anger. I want to be mean. Sometimes I want to hurt the other person back more than resolving whatever we are arguing about.

I hate that my emotions do that and I’m sure there are a million reasons for it, but the point is I’m learning to recognize it. Not because I want to be a better person and not be mean (I mean yes I do) but another reason is because when I let myself turn into the anger beast, I always end up feeling worse.
 
Sometimes I used to get to this point where I’d find myself fighting just to fight. I’d even pick a new fight that had no correlation to the current fight.

Being with Benny taught me something. [No our fights weren’t always great, and we did have a few major blow-outs.] But I learned to process.

Take yesterday morning as an example. After my tri Benny mentioned dinner just to catch-up and hear a true recap of my tri. We traded quick emails on Tuesday and set the dinner up for next Tuesday. We both have insane schedules so this was the only day that worked.

Yesterday morning at 7am I get an email. It’s a forwarded email [originally from yahoo] coming from Benny. His NFL draft with all of his friends had been scheduled Tuesday night. He wrote about how annoyed he was that it worked out like that and asked to have dinner the following Thursday (the 16th) instead.

My initial reaction? Anger. I started to write out a response that was short and mean. “Ok. I think my tri recaps will be shortened quite a bit in a few weeks time and since we have our annual 10k Sunday the 19th we might as well just wait the 3 weeks until then.” Completely ignoring his attempt to pick another date or him asking if we could even sit through the draft together and catch-up.

But then I stopped and processed.

I wasn’t angry, I was disappointed. Benny was one of my best friends for two years and I just experienced a life changing moment and I wanted to describe it to him while it was still fresh. Basically, I wanted what I wanted when I wanted it. Clearly he didn’t plan the draft that night and I was frustrated because I had no other options to offer back since my schedule is packed and I didn’t want to make any compromises (like talking on the phone). I processed some more and thought about something else he always told me was key in miscommunications and arguments.

What do you want the outcome to be? When you’re fighting with someone, don’t you want it resolved? Don’t you want them to hear how/why you’re hurt, how to fix it without purposely hurting them and taking the argument in exhausting circles?

So I wrote out my new response. (Thankfully I hadn’t sent the other.) This version said, “Boo, I’m really disappointed, I was excited to tell you the details of my tri experience while it was still fresh. Since we have the 10k together on the 19th I’ll have to fill you in then.”

The best part of sending that response? I felt great after. I didn’t feel angry, I didn’t feel like there were things I didn’t get to say or that we needed to argue (which happens when I let the anger beast respond) or that I was still disappointed. I felt relief. I said what I felt and it stopped mattering so much to me.

He of course then responded trying to find other dates before our race but between my two weekends away, him being away, boxing and photography classes, etc – it just won’t work. But it spawned a few exchanges back and forth where I felt entirely like my positive self (and resulted in this response from him after hearing about photography and boxing, Serious question: Is there anything cool and interesting that you DON’T do?)

I felt really good about that exchange. It sounds silly but sometimes it’s so hard for me not to fight, not to be stubborn, and not to allow my emotions to turn into anger to mask hurt. But I’m the one who always feels 100 times worse when I say mean things or choose fighting.
 
Somehow, stepping back, processing and really focusing on what I’d like the outcome to be helps me achieve that. And in the end I feel resolved and so much better for it.
 
It’s something I’m really working on with everyone, family, friends, significant others, even at work.
 
I even ran into this with my friends this week too. We’re all struggling with our packed schedules and life to keep seeing each other as often as we used to (multiple times per week). When we were exchanging emails back and forth realizing we have very few September days we can all hang out together I was quick to get angry. I wanted to respond, well then guys see you in October. But seriously, what good will that do? Clearly I’m just hurt and I already miss them but I’m not angry. The truth is, I’m just as (if not more) busy than all if them. But we’ll do whatever we can to see each other, it may not be as often, but we all have always made the effort. And I am making sure to be honest in saying that the effort and planning ahead needs to be done.
 
So tonight I’m having dinner with 4 of the girls (our one friend flew back in from DC) before going out with a larger crowd. Tomorrow I’m headed to my other  friend (my tri buddy) S’s Lake House with two of our  friends for a relaxing weekend of talking, eating, drinking, reading, hiking and if the weather is nicest enough, swimming!
Enjoy your long weekend! 🙂
 
 

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Sometimes you just have a bad day. While there are a lot of positives I can focus on today sometimes you have to just accept that it was a bad day and tomorrow will be better.

My day started with a very long and very frustrating meeting. I have done my job for over 3 years and I work pretty hard. I’ve had long days and long nights of graduate school to be even better at my job. I have been promoted twice in the few years. I always try to be extremely accommodating to all of those I work with.

But today was different. There’s a woman at work who is just miserable to me. Out of defense, insecurity, or just disliking me – whatever it is – her behavior is absurd. Today in a meeting she kept referencing me in front of others as “poor Caitlin”. She was referring to me as that because  before my boss came into the meeting (late) she and her manager had been airing their gripes about my team to me. I can hold my own. Don’t call me poor anything.

Minutes later as she is explaining something she says, “J, it would be helpful to see this, or do this, and you [she looks at me and waves her hand] whatever your name is, can help with this.”

She had just said my name prior. She was sitting right next to me.

She was trying to make me feel disposable.

I was livid. Flustered. Appalled. We’re in a large professional law firm. We’re practically teammates in the same department. She is not my boss. She is not even close to my boss. Who does she think she is?

Never have I had a Partner or an Associate even talk to me like that let alone an informational professional. Never would that woman imagine to talk to me like that with our Director or COO present. It’s absolutely unprofessional. And childish. And no where near the first time it’s happened. That cow.

Anyway, after lots of thinking and cooling down I decided my amazing mother helped me formulate my action plan. I’ll be mentioning to my boss (who witnessed some of this anyway) that I felt it was really inappropriate the way the cow treated me and that if it happens again I plan on asking the cow to talk after with just me.

The cow and I will have a nice conversation. I will say, we have a large project that is going to span the next 6 months and will be working together often. We both have the same goals at the end of the day. I am willing to put 100% into this project. However, I find it very inappropriate and belittling when you say blank blank blank to me. I’d appreciate you treat me the same way you would any other team member.

My mother mentioned that people like that will usually continue until confronted because they know they can. And if that doesn’t work then I’ll really ask my boss to step in.

I’m trying so very hard to keep a cool head about this. To be the bigger person. To know that karma will take care of it all.

But it sure is difficult…Cow.

 

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