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  • Writer's pictureEmily Royce

So I Have Been A Little Angry....

Updated: Mar 18

Anger is a sneaky bugger of an emotion. It has the fire capacity to engulf all other feelings, silencing them in the midst of uninterrupted rage. For me, it seems an easy one to feed. Perhaps because I have spent a good 32 out of 34 years encouraging it, justifying it and holding on to it for dear life. When you identify with an emotion for so long, it can feel like you will be left with nothing once it evaporates. And for a soul so entrenched in grief work, there has been much fear around releasing it.

When I was called to heal grief through dance, I imagined letting go of sadness and disappointment, around the loss of my sister, illness, divorce, the great tragedies and transitions of life. As all things magic, the process has not gone at all as I supposed. My first day dancing, anger presented herself right away. I wasn’t getting the moves fast enough, I supposed I looked foolish and resented this, my body was not cooperating and I was never going to heal this dis-ease. Then came the back problems and I was angry at my body again, for the hard work of my teachers that “caused” it, for the lack of coddling that came from the community. For everything not going the way I “planned.”

I cleansed myself with gratitude, called on my strength to see clearly the impermanence of pain and growing pains. Returned again and again to the joy of this opportunity to dance myself into freedom. Each dance session was a roller coaster. And with every progressive one, I got to see how focusing on possibility infused me with a resilient determination to heal using every resource available.

And then, of course, love quite suddenly presented itself. As a teacher, challenger, guide into my inner world and my blocks. Here was this gentle man, who sought to adore me, but I found every excuse to be infuriated by him. Our mutual misunderstandings became fuel for me to admonish every male energy around me (and there was a lot.) I shielded my heart with a buffer of rage, holding on to my indignation, telling myself that if I forgave or let go that I would be saying to the universe that less-than-goddess treatment 100% of the time was okay with me. And I had a preconceived notion of what that treatment entailed, and I got to be the one to dictate it.

But the dance, the dance, it melted it all. At first, angrily so. I wanted to hold on, to my personhood, my most intense emotion, my feelings around being wronged. But after ten minutes, It melted beneath the movement. My longing shifted to a desire to hand it all over, give it to the Earth, accept her healing and the responsibility that comes with this. When I am connected to my body, I do not wish her harm. I do not wish for her these harmful energetic emotions. When I dance, I see the true nature of my heart and it wants to love and be loved. My body tells me where I am at, what needs to be said, what needs to be felt, what needs to be let go. Ultimately, it ALL needs to be let go. How beautiful it has been to see that I can trust myself with my emotions. I can hold space for them without feeling that I must express them right away and get the result I desire right away. That I can say “This is important to me and here is why” and honor that the receiver of this information may not get it, most likely not in the way that I want. That I am creating an invitation, not a demand, just as much to myself and the universe as the “other.” To do this with gentleness and ease brings up the fear of being taken advantage of, of not getting my needs met, of being undeserving and unimportant. And all of this brings up the anger, as anger cannot exist without these underlying fears of worthiness. So I dance.

When I arrived in Mali a few days ago, I experienced a lot of anger and confusion around me. In close, close proximity. For a moment, I wanted to go there too but it was suddenly so glaringly obvious how misplaced this energy was. I could see the fears of inadequacy, the shame, the frustration, and I wanted to meet it with compassion and gentleness. So I shielded my own auric field and trusted that I could meet this energy with love. I navigated the transition with grace by holding space for myself and others to have big emotions and allow them to be transformed. Because of this, the maladies I was experiencing have dissipated, the intense heat is tolerable, the inconveniences of traveling to a foreign land are being met with awe and wonder. I am gently but firmly advocating for my needs. So my body and emotions do not need to act out to get my attention. The fits of rage over not being heard no longer make sense because I am listening to myself. I can hear the divine.

The anger was here upon my arrival to have me bear witness. To see the ways in which I cut off my own openness and willingness to experience the new. To have me see in demonstration that the other side of frustration is awe, that where there is confusion there is also wonder, that the not-knowing is where all the knowing comes from. I do not know if it is the smiles in Mali that are more brilliant than I have ever seen or if it is the absence of my own barriers that allows me to see the kindness and goodwill that has always been there. No matter. I graciously receive. And as I take in this bounty of good from the universe, how can I allow my output to be anger? I am owed nothing. I can create my own reality. And I choose to be happy.

*Footnote; I still firmly believe there is a place for righteous indignation at injustice but feeding this anger and frustration bred stagnation in me. I am finding that I can meet the same challenges with a powerful love energy and I am working on manifesting what this looks like in a world that needs warriors for truth and peace. May we all find ways to healthfully engage with what needs to be engaged with in the form that is the most healing and most authentic to our own beings. Xo

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