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May your anger guide you to change

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Life is oftentimes a roller coaster of emotions, and largely as a society we view anger as a negative one.

If we observe people losing their tempers, we often view them as being unstable or out of control.

Frequently, when we personally feel anger, we are told to let it go and move on. But what if we let our anger guide us toward a brighter future?

My oldest son, Jayce, was born with a fiery hot temper. He would go from sleeping to screaming within seconds; there was never any in between.

I read all the newborn baby books and blogs I could get my hands on, followed all the advice and suggestions; still, the irate cries of my brand new baby would haunt my every attempt at consolation.

At Jayce’s 8-week checkup, I brought my concerns up to his pediatrician. I assumed I was doing something wrong as this was my first attempt at parenting. However, it quickly came apparent that there was a much bigger problem that had gone undetected.

Jayce’s angry cries were a byproduct of his literal fight to survive. Jayce was born with a large ventricular septal defect (VSD), a hole in his heart that would require medical intervention in order for Jayce to live.

Three weeks later, at 11-weeks-old, Jayce underwent open heart surgery. Although the procedure saved his life, the physical and emotional trauma Jayce endured will forever shape which emotion Jayce lets lead.

Six and a half years later, Jayce is a normal, healthy, active and well-adjusted boy.

Additionally, his fiery hot temper still remains

Jayce can go from zero to 60 at any given moment over the most minor transgressions.

As his mother, this trait is highly concerning, and oftentimes it wears heavily on my patience.

There are days I wish Jayce would evolve past his temper; I even catch myself trying to parent the anger out of my son.

There are also days when I see Jayce channeling his rage for the good of others.

I pity the fool that picks on Archie, my second son and Jayce’s little brother.

Jayce also unquestionably has my back; even at six-and-a-half he is fiercely protective and would go down fighting for my defense.

I also never worry about Jayce being a victim. He has no problem looking someone right in the

eyes and telling them the abuse stops today.

Having Jayce as my son has taught me that anger does not have to be our downfall. Anger is an important emotion that can act as a catalyst for change. As a newborn baby, had Jayce suppressed his anger and accepted his fate I would have never known something was wrong.

Instead, Jayce learned early on to let his anger lead. Sometimes his anger gets him in trouble, sometimes he uses his anger to defend his loved ones and sometimes his anger gets results. Either way, he lets it out and it no longer lives within.

Change occurs when we let our feelings guide us, and if anger is the driving force, perhaps there are injustices that need to be addressed.

Or perhaps we just need to let it out and see where it takes us.

Either way, anger is a part of the roller coaster and without it, the ride wouldn’t be as fun.