Salty

Upon seeing this on the list of words, I just assumed it wasn’t talking about the flavor. Trouble is, I’ve never really been able to keep up with modern language. Maybe this has something to do with me reading lots of Shakespeare and classic novels in high school, or maybe it just has to do with being more and more stingy with my words as I’ve gotten older, but regardless of why, I had to look up the word “salty” before I started writing today. What I found was this: “The word ‘salty’ is a slang term, which can used to describe someone who is angry, agitated, or upset, as well as someone who is mean, annoying, and repulsive.” Lovely.

As those closet to me will know, I am not an aggressive person. At all. Not even a little bit. In fact, I was asked a couple of days ago what I would do if I was cheated on, and I replied by saying that I would cry, call my mom, go for a run, and then talk to the person to figure out what happened before (most likely) breaking up with them. The thing is, I wasn’t even trying to seem mature in my response. I genuinely believe that that is what I would do. Yesterday, another friend tried to teach me stage combat stuff in order to work out the load of tension I have suppressed over the last few weeks, but even though I had fun, I wouldn’t say it brought out my aggressive side.

When I was a kid, I was angry a lot. Not always outwardly, but I was upset about 80% of the time. Whether it manifested in crying, screaming, punching a pillow, or throwing a stuffed animal across the room, it was clear that I was seriously angry. As I’ve gotten older (and gone through many, many, many years of therapy), I’ve moved away from that. Of course I still feel angry sometimes. If I was cheated on, I would definitely be upset. The difference, I believe, is that my emotions now manifest in different ways. I believe that I can help people better if I can keep my emotions in check and not run my mouth off in anger. Unfortunately, when I am angry, I tend to shut myself off and ignore my emotions before finally processing them out in (hopefully) healthy ways.

The only problem I’ve found in not being able to be aggressive is when I’m acting. For A Wrinkle in Time, I played a character who is pretty angry most of the time, and her aggression definitely comes out in physical ways. I had a lot of trouble being angry for the play, whether through pretending to punch someone or push them over, or just yelling. I really had to put myself in a place of anger between various scenes, and that wasn’t at all easy for me. Through AWIT, I learned that being angry is not always a bad thing. There are times when it is okay to be angry. I still don’t believe violence is ever the answer, but that doesn’t mean the emotion of anger is never okay.

I went for a walk last night, as I now do every night. I’ve had a long couple weeks of processing unknown emotions, and yesterday I (with some help from my mom) finally figured out what was going on. I was talking with Kiana about everything, and when we turned a corner the sky turned into this frenzy of orange, pink, yellow, and spots of blue. As we kept walking, we heard thunder and saw lightening. The sky was angry, but it was still beautiful. The emotions were contained and somehow brightened by the sky. I continually have to remind myself that feeling angry is not a bad thing, it’s how you react to the anger that matters. Feeling anger does not make you a bad person, it makes you a human being who feels a wide range of emotions.

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