Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Anger

Alright boys and girls, it's time for another exciting edition of self-help through blogging, where the blogger, in lieu of private reflection or costly therapy, just rambles on about herself in a public forum, thus achieving some sort of catharsis, or something.

Except no one actually reads this. Except for you. Thanks, by the way.

Right, so, tonight's topic is Anger, a common theme when I blog before 8 PM, because it means that Bedtime was the Badtime, know what I'm saying?

It actually wasn't so heinous, is the truth - especially since a few minutes ago when Yoav walked in I walked out.

It was more like the afternoon. I am always totally and utterly amazed that these darling little creatures can get me angrier than anyone or anything else. Before they were born, I just about never got angry. Hurt, insulted, possibly indignant, but not seeing-red capital-A Angry, but with these precious little kinderlach? Gevalt, watch out.

Anger, as I mentioned in a shiur I gave (wow, people think I'm an actual rebbetzin or something) last week at Kever Rochel, is classically rooted in pride and an inability to accept God's will because our own will is more important. Hmm.

So today, when Sroch, Llama and I had to go to the dentist (Sroch = no cavities. Llama = refusal to have dentist examine her), then according to that I should have gotten angry because the bus didn't come. Nope. I should have gotten angry when the bus didn't follow the route I saw online but instead went to the other side of RBS, so I had to call Yoav to bail us out with the car (because I had no money for a cab) and we were late.. but no, that didn't make me angry.

What made me angry was my child (no need to name names, but you're smart, you'll figure it out) running away from me, not coming when I called, practically running into the street, occasionally hitting and kicking. ARGH!

Hmm.

Hmm.

Hey, this therapy by blogging is great. That's it: anger is due to pride. My hollering at my daughter and her ignoring me negates my motherly existence. Child, I am your MOTHER, and so help me you will LISTEN to your MOTHER, or ELSE! Grrrrrr!!!

So is it possible that it is my pride as The Mommy, and not my pride as Miriam, that is why I am angry?

And if so... well, isn't that appropriate? The children are obligated to listen to me - that's clear from the Torah. Chutzpa is one of the greatest sins, and are not willfully ignoring your parent and spiting them (hitting them!) perfect examples of chutzpa?? Are we not taught we should have a righteous anger to defend the Torah!?!

Yeah right. I should be on such a level.

I think the problem is even if I get angry for Noble Reasons, once the anger is there it percolates through my Coffee Filter Brain and creates the Brewed Beverage of Harshness.

... and with that metaphor, my therapeutic blogging ends, because I DON'T have the solution. Yes, my children have to listen to me. No, I should not waive my motherability by allowing them to forgo that. My challenge is to be stringent on that point without actually seeing red. (Item: walking home from the dentist with the offender strapped into the stroller somewhat forcefully, we passed the pediatrician, and it occurred to me to threaten the child that if she didn't listen, I'd have to take her to the doctor to get a shot to make her listen. I mean, I didn't SAY it, but it DID come to mind!)

Phew.

Feeling a little better.

Do we have any chocolate?

.

1 comment:

Zayde said...

Beloved Child, I am a firm believer (though Rabbi Wender does not agree) that anger is about fear and fear is about loss. Loss of power some times but with kids it is usually fear of a seen or unseen danger. We as parents walk a very fine line between protecting our little ones from the horrors of the world and giving them just enough "fear" to keep them safe(er). There is no perfect answer but I suggest you try having a talk with her when she is happy and loving about the need for her to listen to you with out question when you are out of the house. Ganger always told Lisa and I that if we wanted to misbehave, do it at home, never in public, and we complied. It may have been because of the implied permission to be bad at home that we didn't feel the need to be bad anywhere. That and the fact that my Mother frequently talked us in to submission with the sheer length of the conversation. Keep blogging and keep talking to your little ones. Believe me they understand much more than you think they do. All my love, MOM