I get angry then I get mean. It tastes bitter and I try to keep it in but I can’t. Then it’s too late and I’ve ruined something.
A reputation, a conversation, a relationship, an evening. A family.
The thing that made me angry and then mean is gone, but I am left alone with my meanness.
Nobody wants to be around someone who is mean, not even me. But I can’t get away from myself.
I am lonely and I want to be around other people but I am afraid of what I will do to them. If this time will be the time that I go too far. That I break a heart or burn a bridge too completely.
Being mean is the part I have feared the most. They told me that lots of people with HD aren’t mean. They told me that just because my mother was mean doesn’t doom me to meanness. They told me that my true, kind nature would be exaggerated.
They were wrong. And now I’m mad at them too because I bought into their wishful thinking.
Every time it happens, it is harder to bounce back. Every time it happens, I feel less of myself left.
I think back to when I was twenty-something and I laughed and jumped from rooftop to rooftop with my friends in our platform shoes.
That girl can’t ever come back, and I miss her.
My experience with HD holds that I no longer have irritations, grouchiness or impatience. I go straight to rage. It is always the same flavor. The same intensity. The same heat. No matter what lit the fuse. No matter how insignificant I recognize the slight to be. No matter how wrongly I know I’ve blamed someone. No matter how much I know I don’t have any reason to be angry.
There it is.
It is more common by far in the evenings. In fact, I am vigilant to avoid situations that might trigger slight irritations in other, regular people after 5 p.m. This is when I take my mood stabilizer. The heavy dose. This is when I stay away from people and social media. And when I can’t, I take the three tranquilizer pills that I have historically saved for bedtime. I have been taking them earlier and earlier.
Because something always sets me off.
Notice I am not saying some ONE.
That’s because I know that the rage I am suppressing and channeling and grinding through my teeth has no rightful home with anyone else.
Growing up and too far into adulthood, I was a rage receptacle for my HD-stricken mother.
It’s always been my greatest fear that with the progression of the disease, my anger will hurt people I love. My husband suggests that things might not play out that way. I used to be pretty easy-going.
But that doesn’t explain why I now have to be vigilant every single night.
I have my back against the front door and I’m trying to keep out a terrible villain.
If I strain harder and harder to keep this part of me at bay, some part of me will eventually prolapse and it will burst onto the scene–uninvited and unwanted.
And that will really piss me off.