i remember thinking this while i was in the hospital; that i would come home and everything would be cool and life would work itself out and our state would never close and no one else will get sick. this like mindset that things were hard for a little while so they must be easy now. i know, so laughable thinking back on things. that i came home on a friday night and by monday, the state was shutting down. that i barely had time to shower before the world began to shutter. i know that i have said before that i have always felt a little behind. probably because i was sick when everyone else was panic buying toilet paper and hating that they would have to pay twenty bucks to watch the new trolls movie from their own couch. but honestly, i have been in a weird headspace lately. not only am i craving normalcy, probably just like everyone else, but i am also grieving a lot. and going through all the same phases you go through in grief. and in case you are curious, there are seven stages in the grieving process. what people often fail to realize is that you don’t necessarily visit those stages in order nor do you typically only visit those stages just the one time. when i tragically lost my best friend in a car accident five years ago, i remember a grief therapist asking me what stage i was in. it had been about six weeks since the funeral and i was very much so in the stage of anger. but i was also visiting the denial stage every once in a while. but the anger stage. that’s the stage i remember most. i was angry at the world and angry at the person who hit her and angry at myself and angry at my principal and angry at the unfairness of it all. and honestly, the anger stage lasted the longest. it lasted for years. and over time, i dropped into other stages for brief periods. acceptance being the stage i didn’t make it to until about eight months ago. denial a stage i stayed in too long. anger a stage that forced me to face my feelings and my emotions.
and if you’re still reading this, i apologize for taking eighty years to get to my point but here i am. in the anger stage. which until recently, i was just thinking i was moody as hell. which wouldn’t be a super big surprise. but no, it’s this place of anger. not at a person or anything like that. it’s grief anger. anger because everything is out of control and people are behaving poorly in a health crisis and every single thing you’ve feared is kinda a reality. and nothing is simple or easy or even understood. i am so angry. at the world, at the climate, at my body, at my brain and at the unfairness of it all. and i think it is important for us to recognize that what we are all in the stages of grief. some of us haven’t quite accepted what we’ve lost; whatever that may be- lives, opportunities, jobs, a night out at the bar. and some people are still in denial; pretending like this isn’t happening or isn’t real. but me; i am in the anger stage. been here since thursday. and when i said it out loud to my ptsd counselor this morning in session, i realized how totally okay it is to be here. in the anger stage. super angry. at people who are careless with public health. angry at people who are being wreckless. angry that i don’t feel good. still. angry that the pain is still here. angry that i still get worked up over social media posts. angry that i am thirty one and feel like i have the lungs of a sixteen year smoker. angry at my weakness. angry at myself for not having a better body for this. angry that i am not in a self acceptance place. angry that i feel like i need to change my address to establish residency back in square one again. angry that i don’t consistently feel grateful for this recovery space when i know so many have died. angry that my fears take hold of me sometimes. and angry that i wasn’t ready for this. and the anger stage. this place. it’s deep and it’s rooted and i know that. it’s similar to the one i was in for so long after losing someone in my life. and acknowledgement of the stage is half the battle. giving it a name and taking the judgement away from it. allowing for it to have a home here for a while. it doesn’t allow me to misplace my anger or make it someone else’s anger to carry. that’s what this is. it’s okay to be in the place of anger. as long as it’s not inflicting on other people’s shoulders. and sure, there are other stages waiting for me. and absolutely, i want to get a visitors pass to them also. but i also know that my heart and my brain need to be here. in anger. to unpack the things that make me angry; because quite frankly, the things that make me angry also make me sad and the things that make me sad, keep me awake at night. so right now, just as i am allowing myself lots of grace, i too am embracing the anger for what it is.
right now, my body is in repair mode. my brain is in trauma mode. my whole existence is on overdrive and actively hitting the fight or flight buttons. and that’s okay. because there is work to be done and we are all doing it. for some, it’s easy. for others, it’s not being faced yet. and for some, it’s knee high, absolutely sucks, please never ever again, hard work. in places of anger or anxiety or denial or acceptance. actively grieving. waiting for it all to stop spinning. we are all playing big roles in this act. and this is our stage. anger is okay. and so are all the rest.
because soon enough, the curtains will close and anger will exit stage left. and i will be ready to move into the next stage.
end scene. xo.