Okay, perhaps not.
But that is how I feel when I'm emotional.
I carry my emotions around with me in my chest. I hold them inside because if I were to let them eek out, even the teensiest bit, they would destroy everything in my path. My emotions are that raw and powerful. They are the Norse gods of emotions. Thunderbolts and lightening.
(Very very frightening.)
But holding all that energy within me doesn't diminish a thing. Instead these emotions double down. They fold within themselves like an internal star collapsing in upon itself and the next thing I know: Supernova. Big explode-a. I'm atomic, supersonic. I'm a black hole or a galaxy bursting. I don't know what I am because I didn't do so well in science, but trust me, you'd rather look at me through some sort of Hubble telescope than be in the same room.
Maybe I'm exaggerating a little for effect. But in the world of our minds, our emotions are big and important. The more we hold on to them, the more powerful they become. We fear if we were to open up and share them, that we'd open up a valve of destruction.
But just like so much of what I think I know, it turns out I really don't know anything at all.
If you find someone to listen, to really hear you, to take in all that energy you've been holding inside and not judge you for it, not contradict, defend, attack, refute, analyze, nitpick or shoot the shit. If you find someone like that, to just sit and listen — something amazing happens.
All that power? All that energy? The indescribable hugeness of emotion? It just disappears. I mean, it is gone. Gone like it never existed. It feels like a tornado just collapsed at my feet before taking out the barn. It feels like a tsunami just settled quietly back into the ocean. I can hear the gulls calling from above and the water softly lapping below. Suddenly it's just another pretty day with the smell of salt in the air.
It turns out that my big, bad, important emotions are nothing. They are clouds flitting past the blue canvas of the sky. Sit and watch them and they'll roll on past into the horizon or melt right into the atmosphere. Like a hallucination of the soul.
And the very thing I thought was protecting us all — my mighty and brave silence — was the very thing that incubated the anger.
I've been given the gift of a Listener. He hears me. I mean really hears me. He takes it in, holds his hand out for my burden, and takes it on himself. How will I return that gift? Can I share this insight? Can I sit and listen without judgement? Without defensiveness? Without anger?
My turn will come.
This is how love goes. This is how life is. The anger will come and you will have to choose how you deal with it. Will you treat it like a god? Will you nurse it like an infant? Or will you sit under a tree and quietly admit it to the universe and then and watch it to float back to the sky?
Can you say, "I know you didn't mean to hurt me. But I am hurt. I am angry and I don't want to be."
Can I say that?
And could I listen if someone came to me with that? Could I unburden them with my acceptance?
I have told my son that it's okay to be angry. I have told him that I can hold his anger and I won't stop loving him. He looks at me in amazement when I say this. Can I say this to my husband? To my family? To my friends?
Can we say this to each other?
Anger is not the foundation on which relationships are built. Anger is not the constant of life. It's just a passing emotion. Sadness too. Irritation. Joy. Fatigue. Humor. Envy. Fear. They all flit in and out of our lives but they don't define us.
The only constant is my love for you.