Letting Myself be Angry.

We were missing each other again. Looking into his wildly handsome face feeling very unknown. I felt raw at this point, way too exposed, and I just couldn’t get the right words out. Again. When my heart is aching or I have a point I want to get across, verbal communication doesn’t seem to work for me. I can’t make Phil understand what I’m saying and I get tongue-tied. After almost nine years of marriage you’d think talking things out would start to look and feel like a well oiled machine, but my tendency to shut down and run in the moments I don’t feel understood makes that machine look like it’s missing too many pieces.

We tried again. Tried to talk things out again. Tried to make it all make sense again and I gave up. Too scared to put words to my rush of feelings. Too scared to see love. I retreated. 

Once in our room I threw a fit. I mean toddler tantrum, ugly. I was crying deep tears with a clenched jaw. So angry at myself that I couldn’t speak with clarity and confidence to my own husband. So angry that Phil couldn’t just “get” me. I grabbed a pillow from our bed and went to town, pillow fighting the mattress. Hard. I then said words I’d probably never say to any human being. And then I just cried. In each act of anger I wanted to be ashamed of myself. I’ve avoided anger my whole life thinking it was wrong. Thinking my anger would get me no where and Jesus didn’t like my anger and my parents did not approve of tantrums. I’ve stuffed and stuffed and stuffed, trying to pretend like anger wasn’t a part of my life, but I can’t do that anymore.

So each time the shame would rise as I wept on my bed, I said “No, keep crying. Keep feeling.” I kept trying to talk myself out of my fit, but would stop myself. “It’s ok, Sonnie. Let it out, Sonnie.  You aren’t going to get in trouble for this, Sonnie.”

In my anger I started to let my mind wander to the past. Things started to feel dark around me as my mind looked at past hurts that could take me down an entirely irrational road. Through the blurry tears I said, “Jesus, I want to be next to you while I’m angry. Can you sit by me right now even though I’m angry? Can I hold onto your arm and be angry? I don’t want to go to dark places with my feelings, but I do want to be with you.” And His calm came. He came to me even in my anger and His peace took over my heart. 

In all of my growing and stretching, in my learning to fully live, Jesus keeps coming. I’m shocked most times, relieved and filled with hope that He comes to us. 

The next day Phil and I stumbled through our unfinished conversation. We keep showing up in the awkward, which I think helps us show up in the good. I’m thankful that I am learning to give my unkept, out of control places to Jesus. He let me be angry, which feels so much like being set free. 


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