“Why aren’t you mad?” were the last words that I remember my mother saying that Sunday afternoon.
My mom had walked down the black, spiraling stairs to the basement and told me what had happened. I had been sitting on our red faux-suede futon; watching a movie and eating some Doritos when she gave me the news. My mom said that my white Maltese, Speck, had found my favorite pair of flip-flops, the creamed colored ones with a coconut tree on the back that my stepmom had bought for me while on vacation in San Diego, California.
“Okay,” I told her. For some odd reason, I didn’t have any emotions towards what had happened. I didn’t feel angry, sad, or frustrated. I just felt normal.
“Why aren’t you mad?”
“Because it doesn’t matter. It is kind of pointless to get mad over small things.” I said.
The destruction of my flip-flops somewhat opened my eyes a little more to the emotions that control my everyday life. It helped show me how much better it is to not become frustrated when bad things happen or something doesn’t go the way I wanted. Cranberry juice spills on the carpet, leaving a massive stain that won’t come out. So what! I didn’t do as well as I thought on a test. I will just try harder next time! These things won’t get me down!
I had started to show signs of “frustration control” way before I ever got those flip-flops. When I was younger, I really enjoyed sitting on my queen sized bed and watching Cartoon Network on my little television. When I left the television on to long, though, my parents would punish me by taking away my television privileges. I became very angry and annoyed with myself and my parents for this inconvenience. I felt like it was going to be the end of the world. I was young; I needed television! However, as I got a little older, I learned not to be angry with such a minor problem. It was not like my life was going to be changed forever. A couple of days passed, and I was always able to watch television yet again.
All of the time my TB got taken away has changed the way I view every day situations. I now like to view them as a challenge. They are challenges that test my ability to refrain from getting mad over small things that very possibly could not have been avoided. Many times I succeed, and many times I fail. It is human nature to fail at almost everything at some point or another, but someday I hope I will be able to face any bad situation, big or small, with happiness, and not anger.
Staying happy most of the time is a lot more fun than being mad. More people should try it out; it’s really true!
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