Friday, February 12, 2010

In the Rage of the Night

They say you should never go to bed angry. (The enigmatic, headless “they” that also tell you to wash your towels every week and not eat carbs after 8pm.) But is that just a couple’s thing? Don’t be angry at each other before you go to bed, or else…what? Or else you’ll forget all your arguing points in the morning and have a very unsatisfying continuation of your fight? I really don’t know what the big deal is, but I’d like to figure it out, because I went to bed angry last night, and I have no idea how to feel about it today.

The anger bubbled up right before turning off my bedside lamp. It swallowed me up like the ocean, and I was suddenly swimming around frantically, anxious and frustrated. I had to let it out. I beat the mattress with my fists as I kicked my legs like a 3-year old throwing a tantrum on the floor. My downstairs neighbors probably assumed something kinky was going on, but no, I was just regressing to base childish behavior because I didn’t know what else to do.

I suddenly wished I belonged to a 24-hour gym. I could picture myself storming in and hopping on the treadmill for an angry run. The schmuck at the front desk would see my fire and make a mental note to avoid eye contact. Or maybe I’d go into the room where the boxing heavy bags hang from the ceiling and smack them around – all with the poise and power of a lightweight champion, of course. I would be fierce.

After several minutes, I felt slightly more able to breathe, and I turned my attention to the question of the night. Why was I so mad? Was it directed at a person? Perhaps the asshole that verbally attacked my friend for having an Obama sticker on her car. Her story made me angry, but it didn’t feel like the source. Was I mad at myself for, oh, let me name the reasons – procrastinating, self-doubting, not taking my vitamins, or not getting a haircut yet? No. I was truly baffled. Still, this rage inside of me twisted and turned until I was crying, pounding my fists on my pillow.

Finally, and without relief, I drifted off. You would have thought my dreams would be filled with furious images, but I’m pretty sure I dreamed about a Pinkberry opening up in my living room. When I woke this morning, I felt spent and tired. All day I’ve been trying to make sense of my sudden nocturnal anger and looking for signs of residual rage. Thankfully, I’ve found none.

This whole experience has led me to this futile conclusion - humans don’t make sense. We’re balls of emotion that change and shift when we interact with people, but also when we’re alone in our homes. I would say I know what’s going on inside of me about 40% of the time, and I consider myself enlightened. The rest of my time is spent working through one emotion or another and then trying to figure out why I feel that way. And I’m often unsatisfied.

Sigh...I’m never going to find a husband.

(Cancel that.)


  1. I often feel a MAJOR downer coming away from an AWESOME trip. Saw it portrayed well on an episode of Mad Men, season 3 when Betsy comes back from a glam weekend in Paris, only to do laundry, cook, and mind the kids...

  2. Adrien - "Cancel that" is an expression my roommate and I use whenever we say something that we don't want to come true - like "I'm never going to find a husband." We verbally cancel it in the air before the Universe hears us and responds. :)

    Dita - Very excellent theory! I'm already so back in the swing of things, I've already forgotten that a week ago I was squishing my toes in the white sand of Waikiki Beach.

  3. You're gonna find a husband... =)