how my temper cost me $320

A couple of months ago, right before I left for BlogHer, I lost my temper at work.

I have had my fair share of criticism in the workplace and I am not too proud to admit that I will never be employee of the month. Something was said to me and in a fit of rage I grabbed my purse, flew out of my seat and rushed to the elevator so I could escape to my car. As I was standing in the hallway, adrenaline pulsing through my veins and near hyperventilation from a panic attack, I punched and broke something. I honestly do not even remember doing it. But I do remember feeling “safe” as I stood in the hallway because no one saw me.

I was wrong.

Someone did see me. It was reported. I enlightened them on what a difficult time I had been having. I was given one more chance to keep my job. I was told I might have to pay to repair what was broken.

After a month of being on my best behavior I thought I was in the clear.

I was wrong.

Yesterday I received a bill of $320, which I was ordered to repay immediately. I wrote the check. Went to my car and sobbed uncontrollably. Don’t worry. This time I didn’t punch anything on the way.

Funny how I wanted to though.

That’s not the first time I’ve had to pay for my behavior. The kind of behavior that makes me hate myself. The kind of behavior that makes me wish I could be someone else. Someone calm and cool and who never lets anything upset them.

That has never been me.

I have always been reactionary. For as long as I can remember I have been getting into trouble because of how I have reacted poorly to difficult situations. I don’t know how to stop. I am already in my thirties but I’m still throwing tantrums. I’m pretty unsuspecting of it too. I don’t look like a punching kind of gal.

That week was terrifying. I thought sure I would lose my job. After everyone had gone to bed that night I went into the playroom and dropped to my knees. I looked up at the moon and begged God to let me keep my job. I promised it would never happen again. That promise was broken two days later when I was honked at in traffic. I will spare you the details of what happened during my commute.

In short, I’m an asshole. I’m also very very stupid.

I was bawling so hard afterward that I couldn’t even see to drive. I wanted to crawl inside a hole and die. I was so scared of what might happen next. I was spiraling out of control and was afraid of myself. I was shaking because I didn’t understand. Why do I make these choices?

Just once I want someone to describe me as a “sweetheart” or a “lovely person.” Those have never been words used to describe me. Relationships of any kind have never been easy for me. I have lost more friendships and love interests than I care to remember. But I understand why. I used to be desperate for friends. But rejection and acceptance are easier than trying to make people believe you are someone else. I know not everyone is built for this shit. I’m not even built for this shit.

I don’t think of myself as a violent person. I would never ever hurt my children. My two hands are filled with nothing but love and support for those two angels that I have been blessed with for reasons I still don’t understand. Once I’m home it feels like a safe haven. It is there I know I am loved and accepted and my walls can come down.

But out there? In the big bad world? I become a child. Unable to handle my emotions. I am angry about things I can’t change. I am angry about things that were said to me years ago. I try to let them go but it’s more like I only forget them for awhile. Just when I think the bear inside me has gone into hibernation, a twig snaps and she is jarred awake again.

From where does all this rage and anger and hatred come? Is it a part of struggling with bipolar disorder? Is it because I am not properly medicated during those times? My therapist tells me that is why. But I’m starting to think therapy is a waste. I feel irreparable.

It’s two months later. I have been doing so much better. I think I’m in the clear. What if I’m wrong?

How much will I have to pay before it stops?

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Molly
Thank you so much for reading. I hope you know how much it means to share a little piece of my heart with you today.
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Comments

  1. Cindy says

    Molly, reading your blog posts makes me wonder if I myself have bi-polar. I have been diagnosed with depression and generalized anxiety disorder, but sometimes when I am reading your posts I sit here nodding my head saying “me too.”

    A few months ago I was also reprimanded at work. I was warned if my behavior and work habits “more action would be taken.” Ever since then I have tried to change. I feel like a child, but every two weeks I have asked my supervisor if he has any complaints about my work. So far, I have been in the clear but I still feel like I am walking on eggshells. It is an awful feeling.

    & I don’t personally know you, but I bet you are a sweetheart. :)

  2. Devan @ Accustomed Chaos says

    First – i think you are a loving, kind and yes – sweet person.

    I think your therapist could be right about what is going on. If your medication is not exactly correct – during times where it would be difficult for anyone to keep emotions in check – it could present this way.

    You ARE handling this though Molly. It’s not easy but you are stronger then you thing, wiser then you give yourself credit for & I am sending hope out there for you that you will begin to feel more in control. xxo
    Devan @ Accustomed Chaos recently posted..7 Dumbest Things Said To Me While Out With the Kids

  3. says

    The only experience I have with bi-polar disorder was/is being the case manager for kiddos who are dealing with it…but like you mentioned, once their meds were adjusted and they began taking them regularly, their manic depressive episodes weren’t quite so intense. It’s worth a shot, right?

    And Molly? The beauty of our faith is that we get to claim the promise that not one of us is irreparable, no matter what we say or do. Nothing can ever be “bad” enough to separate us from God’s grace.
    Meredith @ La Buena Vida recently posted..BQOTD: Fall Love/Hate

  4. says

    I don’t suffer from bipolar so I cannot completely understand what that is like but I can tell you that I have been freed from anger issues over the years. I went through a Bible study and book called Breaking Free from Beth Moore. There are also programs in church called Celebrate Recovery. We have a group in our church and it is changing lives. http://www.celebraterecovery.com. It is not just for drugs/alcohol but anything that keeps us chained to our old selves. I will be praying for you!
    Sarita Edgerton recently posted..Reminder-Contest

    • Molly says

      Thanks for your concern, Alexandra. Two months ago my meds were not where they needed to be. I was not even on the right kind.

      Two months later I am doing much better. Still struggling to keep my anger in check at times. I’d say that now my biggest problem is increased anxiety. More of a “when will the other shoe drop” mentality. This is probably because I’ve made so many mistakes in my life that it feels like it is only a matter of time before I make another one.

      Please know that I see my therapist and psychiatrist either weekly or biweekly to keep everything in check.

  5. says

    I know there are times where I feel like hitting someone, or something when I get angry. I think we’ve all been there. I realize it’s different in that you did do that, and Usually I slam my phone down – after I’ve hung it up normally, then picked it up to make sure no one is on the other line! But your physical reaction to anger is not much different than some of us who shoot off an email too quickly before we think about how the response might be perceived and read by the recipient, or what repercussions it might have on us. I was sweating one I sent earlier today and have been over it 100 times before finally deciding it wasn’t bad at all. I have learned to keep myself in check a little more the past few years, but at times I can sort of relate to how you probably felt that day. No, I am not dealing with depression or medications like you are, so I know I can’t understand completely, but we all have those moments of regret. I try to take these situations as learning experiences, so I don’t make the same mistake again. I have never been in therapy so I can’t vouch for whether it is or isn’t working for you, but how you write about things shows me how much you want it to, along with your honesty in sharing what you just did with us today. I’m sending some positive thougths to you today!
    Suze recently posted..The Kissing Bandit

  6. Kim says

    When I’m not medicated properly, oh, hell. Bi-poloar/depression messes with ALL of our emotions. It’s only been 2 months, relax a bit and let the meds work, let the therapy work. Keep on going, keep on talking and working at it. You ARE lovely.
    Kim recently posted..Thank you!

  7. says

    Molly…are you sure we aren’t sisters? In my case, I’ve been in recovery for a year. I used alcohol to bury and hide those sinister emotions. I’m working very hard at living the Serenity Prayer so that is why it is so baffling when these tantrums erupt (thankfully not too often) I know, for me, it is a sign of something deeper and not of whatever trivial matter I’m reacting to. It is a long journey and there are bound to be a rock or two along the path to stumble over.
    Polly (aka 5th Sister) recently posted..Just Write: Tantrum

  8. says

    Oh Molly, I am the same way. I go through fits of rage and I have no idea why or where it comes from.

    I saw above in your comments that you’re on different meds now. That’s a good thing, a step in the right direction. Know that we’re here for you. Always.
    Kimberly recently posted..Welcome To My World

  9. says

    Molly you are lovely. I think your transparency today made you lovely. It isn’t always easy to share the things about us that we aren’t necessarily proud of. I have days where it is harder for me to manage my emotions than other days. It’s part of being human I guess. I consider myself to be a “work in progress”. You went and sought help and got your medication adjusted. It’s tough to go through life feeling anxious or worried that something is going to go wrong but maybe having a plan in place will provide you some comfort. If I start to feel this way I’m going to ____(call this person, go outside, eat a cupcake, hit a punching bag whatever works for you that isn’t harmful to you or anyone else). Just a thought. Be good to yourself and although it’s nice when other people tell us that we are great what’s even better is we know it our hearts that we are. You’re not stupid. Trust me I know :) We all make choices we aren’t proud of (my list is long) and I doubt you’re an – you know. But if you really think you are maybe that can be something you can work on – being more kind. I mean you literally could have written the same post as me which means we have some similarities – a-hole not being one of them :)
    And before bring this sermon to an end I just want encourage you to be good to yourself. I will work on practicing what I preach too. Trust! This was something that occurred in your past but by no means should you allow it to define who you are. God’s forgiven you and if you haven’t done so yet it only seems appropriate that you forgive yourself! xo.

  10. Whit says

    I can really relate to this. My temper can be off the wall if I am stirred up enough. I’ve had cases of it at work, things I’ve said to people in my life, and physical actions that I have taken that later make me cringe. I wonder, “Who was that person?”
    I was diagnosed with depression/bi-polar disorder more than five years ago. My medications really help me. I went off of all of them (stupidly) this year, just to see if I could do it. I can’t. Instead of feeling defeated by this, I’ve realized it’s ok. If this is what it takes to live (and want to live and have a will to live), then I’ll take those pills every day for the rest of my life.
    It is so hard to find the perfect balance with medications and therapy. I’ll be hoping for you that that all falls into place.

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