Not exactly the title you thought you’d see today, huh? But anger is an important, under-rated ally in your journey for healing and peace.
I mentioned previously that music is very much a part of me. Songs can immediately link me to past events, my thoughts, and feelings at the time. So today as I drove home, I was listening to music on my iphone, and Uprising by Muse came on. Talk about taking me back! I was on fire! This was my life theme song for a while. If you stopped to listen to it or know it, that fact may be a little frightening. But let me explain.
Recovering from sexual abuse is much like going through the grief process when you loose a loved one. You know why? Because you are mourning yourself! (That idea was revolutionary to me when I first heard it.) One of the steps when grieving is anger.
When you can finally get yourself to be angry, it is a bit liberating. You are feeling something other than depression, hurt, shame, grief, and heartache, which is AWESOME! You should be angry. You had something stolen from you. For me, it was my childhood, my innocence, trust, self-worth, knowing love, being cared for, etc. Remember I come from a household with a bipolar mother as well, so I experienced physical, emotional, and sexual abuse. I have a lot to be angry about…. or at least I did.
The trick here is to find a GOOD outlet for your anger, one that does not endanger yourself or others. Now don’t get me wrong, I thought about punching my dad in the face, burning their house down, taking out a full-page ad in the Post Gazette, and even throwing nails at the end of their driveway… cause I am a wimp, afraid of hurting anyone, and breaking the law. I didn’t do any of these things, but I will tell you what I did do! 🙂
My dad starting building me a dollhouse when I was about 8ish. It took shape rather quickly, but then it sat in the garage unfinished until I had my three girls. My father then decided 20 years after he started it to finished it. Yippie! (sarcasm, I really need to get some fancy eye-rolling emojis for this blog!!!) So, he finished it and it was moved into the finished attic of my home and subsequently was moved five times and across the United States twice. The girl never really played with it. Not sure why. Maybe I gave them an evil glare every time they went near it? Don’t know.
That brings me to after I had remembered several things: I was divorced, the kids were with their dad every other weekend, and we lived in our little cottage in the woods, my safe haven. My parents didn’t know where I lived, so my mom gave my brother a letter to give to me… my mom is famous for her letters. (again sarcasm – eye-rolling emoji) After being at his house, I drove home, sat in the car, and read it. The letter basically said that anything my dad did to me was her fault…. GREAT! THANKS! I feel sooooo much better. (Is my sarcasm out of control today or what!?! I’m blaming the song!)
Needless to say… that pissed me off! If you remember, she was in the room when my dad did things to me, so this letter meant NOTHING! Thankfully my wonderful children and my one neighbor were not home, because I got out of my car ready to kill someone. I stormed in and out of the house, around my yard, into the woods surrounding my yard, and back again. I have no idea for how long. I had to look like a crazy person. Have you ever been so angry that you literally don’t know what to do with yourself? That was me.
Then finally it came to me. I knew exactly what to do. I charged into the house and down to the basement, opened the tornado door to outside, grabbed a baseball bat, and with my herculean strength pulled that stupid 100 plus pound 5 x 3 x 3 foot dollhouse outside. (Footnote: I am a wimpy, 5’7, 125 lbs skinny, white girl whose afraid of her shadow, so I was kicking butt!) I pulled that thing up a flight of steps, around the house, and about 200 feet to the fire pit. Then I beat the crap out of it with my baseball bat. Man, wood was flying everywhere! When I was done, I put the pieces into the fire pit, poured on the propane, lit a match, and POOF, bye bye dollhouse.
It took a few hours of me adding wood to finally burn up the whole thing, but was that LIBERATING! To me that dollhouse symbolized a hoax. A fairy tale childhood where a wonderful dad builds a beautiful dollhouse for the daughter he loves. HA! Then I heard the song… Uprising by Muse. It became my anthem. It lit a fire in me that I cannot explain… well other than a burning dollhouse. I listened to that song over and over and over again.
“They will not force us
They will stop degrading us
They will not control us
We will be victorious …”
So let’s get to the point. Let anger be your ally. Let it help take your life back. Let it help heal you. Let it be your anthem for a time. And you know what will happen? “YOU WILL BE VICTORIOUS!”
Song: Uprising by Muse
The Bible does say we are allowed to be angry just don’t sin: “In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry,” Eph 4:26
“When Saul heard their words, the Spirit of God came powerfully upon him, and he burned with anger.” – 1 Samuel 11:6