My dream is that one day Merci will learn to pick up her own toys and put them in a basket so her den is neat. She will probably learn that right after she learns to cook and clean. Meanwhile, I occasionally pile all her toys in a basket and put the basket in the living room. She reacts like a mother dog moving her puppies to a safer location. Shortly, all her toys are scattered around her bed in her den in my way.
This morning I decide she needs to spend less time in solitariness and move her bed near my workspace. I place the basket with all her toys on top so she will feel secure. One by one, she trots the toys back to their rightful spot in her den.
Merci’s toys are dirty from being repeatedly tossed and fetched. I wouldn’t think of putting one of her toys in my mouth. But as I watch her I realize we sometimes hoard anger in the same way. We embrace it, chew on it, and cuddle it as we sleep and as soon as we decide to move it out of our life, we grab it back from the trashcan and chew on it some more. We don’t consider the germs it carries.
There is a time to be angry, but when the time has passed, we need to toss the anger in the trashcan and leave it there. Anger is like clutter. If we don’t pick it up, sooner or later we will stumble over it.