Emotions are not us. They are not who we are. To say “I’m happy, I’m mad, I’m sad” is incorrect. “I FEEL happy. I FEEL anger. I FEEL sadness” is correct, because our ego is what creates these experiences of emotion. We are not our ego. We are a passenger of choice, inside the vehicle that is the ego. We can choose to jump out of that moving vessel, but most times we feel safe inside, even if its one crazy driver.
Our emotions happen for a reason. They come about in a way that is solely unique to our perception of our reality. Experiencing happiness can bring about a lightness in your soul. Experiencing love helps to nurture and feed your inner self. Experiencing sadness causes a necessary pain in order to heal and grow stronger. Without pain, there is no recover, so Sadness can be a positive emotion if acted upon correctly.
But what about anger? When is anger a POSITIVE emotion for your ego to drive you through? Well, because you can still be driven to the most beautiful place. When anger can motivate you to do better for your true self, that’s when it becomes a positive.
I’ve been in a state of sadness as I go through the painful process of divorce. To say everything happens for a reason is true but so vague. There is definition behind every experience we have in life, whether we created it, entertained it, or validated it. Whether negative or positive, there is a reason we do the things we do. I blew up my life. I went down a path of self-destruction without even being aware that I was doing so. In my process of self-discovery, I learned of what I was doing, and more importantly, why.
But as awareness overcame me, so did sadness. Sadness for the loss of love and sadness for the loss of my old life, my best friend, my husband, and our complete family. Daily, this sadness would crash down on me in waves—relentlessly, but mercifully enough that I could come up for air. Just enough air not to drown. I would get constant reminders of what I had, what I didn’t have yet, and what I may never have again.
I experienced this sadness in such a way that it would bring me to my knees, then down completely. My body was ruled by my ego. I couldn’t stop it. I didn’t want to. I needed to allow my ego heal me by experiencing this physical pain that sadness employed. With pain comes strength. I know that when my inner self is healed, nothing will be able to hurt me. There will be no cuts, gaps, or missing parts of me for anything to seep in and fill. Because I will be whole.
So something happened literally overnight, and this morning, I woke up feeling anger. While I slept, sadness transformed into anger. And anger got my ass out of bed with purpose.
My recent sobs of “Why doesn’t he love me enough?” turned into “Why the fuck do you care so much about someone who doesn’t care enough?” Whether fact or fiction, it’s the emotion my ego created just for me to move forward with more strength than I had yesterday. I no longer felt unlovable—I felt sort of full of myself. I love myself. I am enough. I am more than enough. Too much for some. And that’s okay. Not everyone can afford or handle the luxury car. I am pretty amazing. My true self is, not the person who let sadness drive her to a miserably dark place. I’ve now jumped out of that car.
Anger showed up, and I hopped in. This new emotion is not directed at anyone but myself, but more like how a drill sergeant will scream at his marines to get their ass into gear. This drill sergeant is now pacing circles around me like a shield. Nothing can penetrate. Nothing can hurt me.
I will no longer mourn the loss. The time to grieve is over. Time to toughen up and do the hard work. Fall down 10 times, get up 11. I’ll let Drill Sergeant Anger keep me fired up until I’m strong enough on my own. Sergeant Anger can scream in my face as I push forward and upwards—the push ups of life.
This is my healing process: Blowing up my life to expose the long-festering wounds that desperately needed attention. Allowing sadness to then painfully clean my wounds, both old and new. Now anger to stitch up and scab over those spots for good, leaving scars as a reminder of my strength.
The hardest part of a push up is the actual pushing up off the ground. But that’s when you build strength. It takes a lot of strength to go through the hard emotions, to trace their roots, to learn from them, and most importantly, to evolve. So it’s okay to fall down to the ground as long as you do the damned push up. And if anger happens to be the driver to your beautiful destination, just make sure you buckle up and try to enjoy the ride.