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I’m… WHAT?!

January 2014
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I have been battling minor anger issues related to my father’s passing away last week.  I’ve had to watch my tongue (or completely hold it on a couple of occasions) with my wife and kids.  I’ve had to stop listening to some of the radio programs that I often disagreed with but certainly didn’t have a problem with.  I’ve also had to be aware of my acceptance with the kids – I am an exceptionally laid back guy and my kids are very good so my having a problem with how they’re acting is exceedingly rare.  When little things started bugging me last week, I really had to step back and try to figure out what the hell was wrong with me.

I was out with a bunch of recovering friends last night and one of the guys began talking about how angry he used to be, decades ago, and the root cause for that anger – fear.

I rolled that around in my head a little bit, the root cause of most anger can be traced back to fear.  I know this to be true…  A lightbulb appeared over my melon and lit up.  All of a sudden many of my struggles over the last week with my father’s passing started to make sense.  Other than the usual feeling a little more mortal, I connected a few dots to see a pattern beneath the obvious.  There is an underlying irrational fear, with my dad gone, that a part of my support network is gone as well.  Trying to wrap my head around this entirely is proving difficult so early on but there it is.

You see, the truth is my dad hasn’t been available to offer knowledgable assistance for almost two years now – I’ve already been on my own, and have made it just fine so far.  This is the irrationality.  For some unknown reason though, his being gone puts a finality to it that I’m struggling with.  My dad was always there to bail me out.  Even though I haven’t needed his assistance, other than offering suggestions on how to deal with stress and life, for more than two decades, it was always there if I did…  And now it isn’t.

So the wife, kids and I arrived home shortly after figuring all of this out last night and feeling like a huge weight had been lifted from my shoulders, I settled down in bed to watch a movie on my phone…  I may have made it three minutes beyond the opening credits before I was out.  I slept like a baby, better than I have in several days.

Now that I’ve identified the fear, the root cause of this irrational anger I’ve been feeling for the last few days, I’ve got something that I can work with – and on – so I can do something about it.

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13 Comments

  1. Trails and Ultras says:

    Its strange, when my father died I experienced the exact same thing. His drinking had reached a point that in the last part of his life I could never have gone to him for help and advice, yet when he died it was like I had lost someone who never was. I had spent years expecting him to die at any time and then when he did it was a huge shock. I felt stripped of feeling secure…even though I hadn’t been. Even now I don’t really understand it.

  2. Thanks for writing this. I have struggled at times to really understand what my husband went through when his mom died a couple of years ago, and this clarifies things somewhat. Great post.

    • bgddyjim says:

      I’m having a tough time, have been for hours, figuring out how to put a response into writing exactly how much writing the post was my pleasure, for your comment alone. Thank you.

  3. Kecia says:

    Fear can have a nasty hold on people for years before they get it figured out. I’m glad you have found the root cause and can focus in on changing your response to it. You are a strong individual that will overcome this challenge (just like you have so many others)!!

  4. runmyssierun says:

    Great post and very wise! Thanks for this post. I’m so very sorry about your father. You’ve gone through so much and it is because of that, that I know you can get through this. Hug your wife and kids.

  5. sueslaght says:

    Such an honest post. Glad to hear that you have been able to see the cause. Sending positive energy and support your way.

  6. elisariva says:

    I completely understand. No matter how old we are when our parents pass away, there may be a feeling of being orphaned. I miss my mother so much, especially after last year. I am more the parent now to my 93 year old father, but I know when his time comes my tethers to this world will be gone. Hang in my friend.

  7. vegastrigirl says:

    Just getting caught up (as usual). So sorry to hear of your father’s passing. I wish the best to you and your family during this time.

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