Anger and Grief

Three years ago today Jason had his first MRI…of what would be many…and we got the call that he had a brain tumor. The very next day we met with Dr. Hunt, the neurosurgeon, and heard the word “Glioblastoma” for the first time. And that is “the day everything changed”. Coincidentally, May is also Glioblastoma Awareness Month and Mental Health Month.

Grief has five pretty well-known stages…denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance….that in my experience are pretty much bullshit. While I have felt all of those…they definitely have not been in that order…and I go back and forth and around and around with them all the time. Kind of like they are all there in the background, but at any one moment I feel one…or even a couple…more strongly.

Anger is one of the hardest ones for me to handle. I know that I am angry for a lot of reasons. I’m angry at circumstances. I’m angry at God. I’m angry at my loved ones. I’m angry at our health care system. I’m angry at society. The list goes on and on. Most of the time, my anger gets tamped down because I don’t feel like it fixes anything. I draw it into myself…spend more time by myself…go “radio silent”…until I can “deal” again. Mostly, it’s when I’m sleeping that my anger comes out.


Eyes snap open
Jaw clenched tight
Teeth begging for mercy

Heart pounding
Blood throbbing in every vessel
Lungs fighting for air

Brain and body working tandem
Rescuing me 
Anger pulling me under

Red so hot and dark it blackens
Like the hottest coal in the fire
Or the pits of Hell

The coal sparks
Strengthens in my dreams

Morphs into a ball of fire
Uncontrollable pain

Unable to contain it
My mouth opens
Raining flames of fire and hurt

Mindlessly burning
This world that has
Deserted me

But I live in another dimension now
Even as a dragon of pain and anger
In my unconscious

The world is protected
Doesn’t see me
Doesn’t feel my heat

The dragon lets out one more roar
Tears of molten lava run down her cheeks
The fire banks

But the ember remains

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