Friday, January 28, 2011

That's A Downer

Hey Man, don't ya  just hate it when something or someone brings you down? Like the young folks used to say, "Chill out, Man!"

I hate the feeling of anger. It can consume you. I don't like that red hot feeling that comes over me when I am angry. I become enraged and want to lash out. I have tried to learn to contain and control my anger for a very long time. I am sorry to say that I have been so angry at times that I have made a total ass of myself in front of others. I can't do anything about my behavior in the past but I can try to control myself and learn not to overreact when I become upset.

I was probably a horrible mother when the kids were young. I would lose control and harangue them when they incurred my wrath. I had to work very hard to learn to control my temper and not become a total bitch. I practiced tough love with the boys and demanded they obey me. I whipped them and grounded them and watched them like a hawk. I tried to make sure I knew where the boys were at all times. It didn't endear me to the children but I did love them. I told them I loved them often. Don't think I was a heartless mother. I just wanted to keep them safe and thought it was my responsibility to keep them out of trouble. They still did things that drove me nuts. I couldn't watch them 24-7. You can't hold your child's hand forever. They're bound to make mistakes. That's how you learn. Right?

I used to tell Scout and Colt and their buddies that if anyone got hurt I wasn't going to take them to the hospital. I told them I would just throw them over the fence into the woods and let the coyotes deal with them. Scout's buddy Allan started calling it Edgewood Insurance. I recited the rules to them often, especially when they were doing something dangerous or stupid like boys are prone to do.

Scout said that Allan wanted to have a pine cone battle one day and Scout told him it would be okay as long as nobody got their eye knocked out. (Another one of my oft repeated chants to my sons.) He said Allan threw a pine cone and missed him but when Scout threw his pine cone he hit Allan in the eye. He thought "Oh oh, Pam's right."

Colt told me that he knocked his shoulder out of socket one time when he was skateboarding. He was so afraid to tell me that he fell back hard on the ground to knock his arm back in place. He said it hurt like the devil but he didn't want to come home and face me with his injury. I would tell them they better not get hurt or sick because we couldn't afford to go to the doctor.  I had no clue they were that afraid of me.

Scout began to test me when he was a teenager. I was always ordering him to do this or that or the other thing. One day Donny said something about Scout growing up and his comment caused me to have an epiphany about my son. My eyes were opened and I realized that if I didn't do something to change my relationship with my sons they might not love me when they were grown. I realized I didn't want that.

I still bitched and moaned but I learned to take it down a notch. I finally found Flylady's website and started hearing her soothing voice in my head. I gradually began to change my thinking. I tried to look on the bright side instead of focusing on the negative. I started feeling happier. Getting older and learning that life isn't fair and if everything is good you should thank your lucky stars and not let anger take over you, also helped.

One of the few times I got anything out of pitching a fit was when the electric company came down and pruned my Magnolia trees without my permission. The tree was not interfering with the wires. The tree cutters were quite nice to me until I started being nice, then oddly, that was the last I saw of them. We got some mulch out of them.

They prune the trees along the highway in stupid shapes. They call the cutting style the Shigo method but I called it the Shitgo method. The huge oak trees along the highway are shaped like goalposts or tuning forks with wires running through the cut out crown. Some trees are too close to the lines and would look better trimmed back to the trunk but I'm not an arborist so my opinion doesn't count.

My cousins teased me about being fat when I was young. I put up with the teasing from my cousins, Mike and Randy, because they were always teasing me about something. I was used to it even though I didn't like it.

Daddy and his brother, Bob, used to go camping together in the mountains when we were kids. Daddy and Bob loved trout fishing. It was very cold so there was always a campfire. Someone had been baking potatoes in the fire in tin foil. We were all playing and running around the fire.

Randy started calling me fatty and other names and Stevie started teasing me, too. I became furious. They were ganging up on me. I wanted to lash out at them but I didn't  know what to do. Eddie made the mistake of standing in my face and calling me fat. I thought Eddie was the sweet one! I grabbed one of the hot potatoes off of the picnic table and smashed it in his face. He screamed in pain. I was busted. Some of the grownups had seen what I had done. I was sorry that I had hurt Eddie. He was the baby boy. I really liked him. I don't know why I went ballistic on him, but I did. I just became angry, like the Hulk, only I saw red. I was ashamed to be that mad.

I hate being angry. Anger can cause you not to think clearly. Anger doesn't solve anything. Some people know how to deal with their anger and express their anger calmly and logically. I believe that anger begets anger. I wish I could shield myself against anger. It can't be good for you. It burns up too much psychic energy and can make people sick. Being angry depresses me.



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