I've always had a hot temper. I like to think it's because I have red hair, but it might just be some kind of character flaw that has nothing to do with my hair colour.
It's also always struck me as mildly amusing that so many people (people who clearly don't know me very well and/or don't live in my immediate vicinity) see me as "calm" and "unflappable". What a joke.
I'm actually beginning to think that I might even need anger management classes.
The anger I feel just bubbles away inside me, allowing my deceptively calm exterior to fool a certain number of people, and then suddenly... BANG! It explodes, loudly, messily, embarrassingly.
I nearly always regret losing my temper - I say things I don't mean, I express myself badly, I shout so loud I've been known to damage my voice, I break things, I slam doors - but it just bursts out of me, with such violence, such force that I know I am totally incapable of controlling it.
Unfortunately, my sweet little girls seem to bear the brunt of it nowadays. I shout at them so much more than I mean to, I'm so impatient, so intolerant, so downright crabby most of the time with them, and I know they don't deserve it (to be fair, they're also pretty crap at doing what I ask - clothes draped over all the furniture for days on end, used Kleenex not picked up, homework not done unless I physically make them, no help given unless I ask for it). And yes, they went to bed crying again this evening. And I feel like shit. Again.
I'm angry about just about everything I can think of, myself first and foremost. I hate myself for failing to get stuff done, failing to maintain this small house in any kind of presentable state, failing to eat properly, failing to get over D's departure. I hate myself for not being able to give my girls the life I would have liked for them, I hate that I'm so intolerant of everyone, everything.
Then, I'm angry at D. Oh, so very, very angry. He doesn't get it, but I blame him for just about all the shit in my life these last 18 months. I blame him for destroying our family, destroying our couple (14 fucking years up in smoke...). I blame him for forcing me to live such a damn miserable fucking life.
After that, I'm just angry. I'm angry at cyclists cycling on pavements, going through stop signs and red lights, going the wrong way down one-way streets; I'm angry at snarky administrations.
Just angry at the world in general, to be honest.
There isn't a single day I'm not feeling angry about one thing or another.
I know it can't be good for me, it can't be healthy (though there isn't much that I do that's healthy), but I can't switch it off, calm down, relax. I know even going on holiday will be a source of conflict (the girls will annoy me, I know they will, and I'll feel angry with D for screwing up holidays - leaving me alone, without adult company).
I'm scared of who I've become, of how miserable, angry, snarky, impatient and just downright nasty I seem to be most of the time, worst of all, with the only two people I love more than life itself.
I scare myself.