The Strength of Anger

In the five stages of grief:

There was no chance to work through Denial…. that call from the Sheriff… well, the “I am sorry to have to tell you this over the phone…” nope, no chance for Denial in this Grief.

Bargaining was taken out of the equation too, because I believed the Sheriff. I mean, who would lie about a thing like this. I don’t even believe, a couple of weeks later, the night I brought Ethan’s ashes home, that I thought any kind of barging could be struck. I just wailed, “I want my son back.” Repeatedly. It was not a bargaining request. It was a painful, loud, repetitive fact. One I had to work through.

Depression, it is a part of my grief. It still comes and hides and comes again. I know it is here for the long haul.

Acceptance … I did that early too. Even if I did tell the Sheriff, “I can’t talk about this now, I will have to call you back.” It was because I couldn’t hear any more. His words stung my ears and my heart. But there were too many news reports; too many conformations for me to even think this was not real. And later, my wish, no my prayer: “Please don’t make Ethan’s death be in vain,” has been answered time and time again.

It is that Anger that is rearing it’s ugly head … again. It hit me very hard as my mind wrapped around the Sheriff’s words making me understand the oddness in my kids’ step-mom voice that morning, on the phone. And my (then) husband’s softly spoken, “You are going to have to call. You’re his mom. They won’t release any information to anyone that his not his next of kin.”

And the Anger has swelled many a time over the last 5 years 9 months and 2 days. But I have been able to keep in caged, most of the time. But, it began to have a life this weekend. A life of it’s own. I did release it in the company of comfort; with someone I am completely comfortable with, completely trust; someone who does not look at me like I have two heads.

But I did not like that it grew and grew and grew
and I did not stop it.
I did not like that I actually fed it.

Allowed it to blossom.

Not one other person around us knew what was growing inside of me.
Not one other person around us heard what I was saying.
They did not hear the conversation my confidant and I were having.
But I don’t like that I was in public.

I don’t like that after the conversation ended the Anger stayed around… it did not go back into its cage. It lingered at the door waiting to be given free rain to destruct.


I have always been afraid of this beast called grief.
I have worried it would grow so big that I would get lost in it.
I have worried it would engulf me.
Be more powerful than I.

And this weekend … it felt too comfortable letting the Anger exist.
Darn it!




2 thoughts on “The Strength of Anger

  1. Dear Kathleen,
    I have suffered loss, but none the magnitude of yours. I often think the anger is a mask – a sturdy, powerful mask – that hides the more painful, vulnerable enormity of your sadness. And who can blame you? Do you have support groups, and/or support systems, that allow you to express your grief, whatever that sounds and looks like? I think you deserve a safe place to express yourself. Thwarting the grief can serve to magnify it.

    • Hello Wendy ~~ Thanks for stopping and taking the time to read let alone drop me a note.

      Let me assure you, no matter the magnitude of your loss, you have suffered Your Loss. It is just as important and weighty as my loss. I shall never negate the impact the loss you have suffered has on you. Please don’t let anyone else, including yourself, do it either.

      “Who Could Blame you?” you ask … I think, at times, that I am the only one who blames me for the anger. More specifically, not controlling the anger.

      A Safe Place to express my grief:
      Yes, I have a wonderful spouse-type fella who allows me all of the emotions I need to feel in the comfort of his support, in his arms or even on the phone; whenever it rears it’s head. In addition, I belong to a wonderful Hearts of Bereaved group that I also help facilitate. I originally wrote and posted this to the like-hearted folks, many of whom are my friends now that we belong to a unique “club”.

      Tell me … something positive… something that still makes you smile about that which you have lost.


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