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I CAN find clarity in the face of anger.
* The following is an update from the artist, submitted on August 13, 2013:
Creating my I CAN felt like reaching for something that seemed impossible. Growing up with domestic violence, I learned to fear conflict. I experienced a lot of confusion around anger—both my own anger and other peoples' anger. This is one of the biggest struggles in my life.
Making my I CAN rendered me both vulnerable and accountable. It allowed me to open up about this instead of holding it as something hidden or shameful. This project has welcomed me into an ongoing journey in which I'm not alone. Trying to change such long-standing patterns hasn’t been easy, but my I CAN has encouraged me to make those changes step by step, with steady, daily progress. I made my I CAN as a necklace that I keep by my bed when I go to sleep and touch every morning when I wake. For days when I want to, I wear it throughout the day as a reminder to find clarity in the face of anger.
Since making my I CAN, I’ve learned to notice the warning signs of what’s happening within so that I can reach for support rather than keeping it all inside and letting it boil over. I’ve learned how to take deep breaths and be calmer when I’m angry. My I CAN has changed how I am as a parent. To figure out how to handle anger in a loving way is one of the best things I think a parent can do, and though I’m no role model, I am learning, and I welcome any progress I can make. I’m able to recognize my anger, as well as other people’s anger, and I’m also learning how to be calm with myself and with others. Anger is an emotion that we all feel, and that’s okay. To me, finding clarity in the face of anger means recognizing the feelings of anger without reacting to them. I am taking my own steps towards this and am grateful to be part of a project where we can all inspire each other in our steps to grow, heal and create a safer future.
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