Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Going Postal

The sadness is a given. Everyone expects that and is tolerant when I tear up over the littlest gesture of kindness. But what do I do with the anger? the hatred? the outright venom that I want to spew all over the freakin place?

There is this part of me that find great solace in being able to cry freely. I know I can close my office door and have a good sob when I need to. I now have Norman Rockwell's Four Freedoms hanging on my office wall to examine when I have to deal with a particularly difficult phone call. I'm learning to cope.

But then there is the part of me that wants to smash something. I want to kick and hit and bite (nobody in particular...just everyone I see). I want to throw things and tear up anything even remotely destructable. It's funny too because none of it is directed at myself. The experts say to watch for self-destructive behaviors when you're grieving. I have yet to hear of anyone warning about the possibility that I might want to go on a homicidal rampage. I guess that would be self-destructive in a way, but it's really just outwardly directed at the universe in general.

And I can't do it. My office is...well...my office...and I don't want to get fired. In my car, I need to maintain my senses in order to get safely to my destination. At home I have dogs, a child, and a husband who all need me to not lose control. It would probably frighten all of them if I went on a mad rampage. Heck, it frightens me.

I've read a couple of those self-help grief books and they suggest starting an exercise routine. Apparently the physical exertion helps to take the edge off. And since I still have 5 lbs baby weight to lose, on top of the 50 or so just plain fat pounds I should lose, I'm going to give it a try. I'm going to hate every step of it...but if it makes me feel less like running over the little old lady in the grocery store parking lot, it'll be worth it.


lauralu said...

the yoga is helping me some, as is peddling my bike hard, but what really gets it out is driving on the interstate with the sunroof open and screaming out of it at the top of my lungs. it's fabulous.

Jill said...

well I am thinking 'boxing bag' for you. you can kick and punch it. i saw a study once that said that rather than dissipate anger it actually makes people more angry. i think they measured cortisol levels or something.

but given that you want to kick the crap out of something, this way you could also get fit, everyone wins:)

Holley said...

I recommend video games. Doesn't even need to be the shoot 'em up variety. Insanaquarium is cathartic (aliens invade a fish tank). I also did a lottttttttt of Civilization. Somehow, trying to run my own country and take over the world helped me feel like I had control over something, even when I felt that I had no control over my life. Attacking other civilizations helped get the aggression out too.

deadbabymama said...

I love the video game idea!

Yoga helped me a lot too, although I did do a little crying in some of the classes but no one freaked out on me so whatever. I had taken yoga and meditation years ago (which really helped me through labour and delivery) so taking it up again felt really good. I felt like I was doing something about shaping my new reality which helped me to feel less powerless. And it was good for my body, too.

I was a bit surprised at how angry I was after deadbaby, but then when I started therapy I realized that I was a pretty angry person anyway, and that anger in this situation was not only normal but perfectly rational. Not so socially acceptable though, and pretty exhausting, so it is good to find ways to channel it or let it go. Easier said than done of course, but I'm working on it.