I was pissed.
I was f***ing angry as all Hell.
Rage and righteous indignation seethed, barely contained, beneath my surface. Hurt and betrayal and pain fueled the fire until it forged a hideous beast struggling to be let free from the confines of my body. This creature, with its gnashing jaws and pointed appendages, fought to claw it’s way up my throat to unleash itself upon the wicked who had wronged me. I could feel the anger, born of the pain, pacing inside my chest like a caged animal. I could not – would not – let it out.
Who was this woman? How could this be? Was this really me?
The answer: shockingly, yes. This horrible creature was me. In a moment of clarity, when I was able to observe this within me, I was forced to see that the anger was a piece of me. This ugly thing was actually me, transformed. I had never known the depths of such anger before. She had always been there, in my shadow, meek and harmless until the Pain Monster woke her up and fed her. And the Pain Monster stoked the flames until they birthed the Anger. The Anger was always there, always a part of me. But it was benign, unnecessary and forgotten.
Once I realized that The Anger was a part of me, I knew there was precious little I could actually do with it. I could, justifiably, let it out to seek revenge, get even or assist in the development of a spectacular drinking problem. Or I could keep it locked inside, letting it grow stronger until it consumed me like a cancer. Neither of these two options were acceptable. So what was left? Accept it, embrace it, love it. Forgive it. It is an aspect of myself, after all. No matter how wicked or ugly, this is a piece of me. She is a part of my shadow self.
The shadow self is not all good or all bad. The shadow self is just all of those things that we want to hide, because looking at them is painful. So we hide them, and invite in the Pain Monster. When we hide them, we deny them and resist their presence. These shadows are tricky. They are born of lightness and of darkness; at the edge where contrasting forces meet and interact – here we see shadows. They can play, distort, confuse and beguile. We want to hide our shadows because we can’t control them. But they are not meant to be controlled – or denied. They are meant to be embraced and loved. And forgiven. Shadows are a part of us just wanting to be accepted for what they are. My Anger is a part of my shadow self. Meeting that beast was a blessing. I realized that even though the anger is ugly, it has another aspect. As capable as I was of acute rage, I was capable of a powerful love. This is all an expression of how passionate I can be. Passion is simply (or not, I suppose…) a powerful expression of overwhelming emotion. The depth of my capacity for Anger, is also the depth of my capacity for Love.
Standing on the precipice of this joyful chasm, I am filled with a sense of optimism and one-ness. The reconnection to this Love, my rediscovery of it, was the freedom and joy I had craved. The Love, the acceptance, embracing it all, has moved me higher than I ever thought possible.
I am blissfully in love and at peace.
Love and light,