Johanna Garth is the author of The Persephone Campbell Series; a modern take on the myth of Hades and Persephone. Johanna lives in McLean, Virginia with her husband and two children.
Tuesday, May 31, 2011
This is a post about frustration.
Which is something everyone experiences from time-to-time. Child 1 recently started expressing her frustration with me and life by taking huge bites of the apples I bought to fill my indoor planter. I bought this planter a couple of years ago because I thought it was pretty. Since that time I've struggled in my search for something good to put in it. The obvious solution would be to put a plant in it, but (as previously illustrated) all my houseplants end up looking sad and wilted. Then I hit on apples. It was the perfect solution-inexpensive, attractive and long-lasting.
Okay, so now back to the frustration part of the post. Child 1 thinks the perfect way to vent her frustration is to take a bite of an apple that has been sitting in my planter since September. They are soft, slightly-withered and disgusting to eat (although still pretty enough for planter filler). Each time she takes a bite of one of those apples I struggle not to laugh. I don't want to make her more frustrated but I'm not entirely sure why biting those apples is supposed to make up for whatever injustice she feels she's suffered.
Real or metaphorical-don't eat these!
Then I started thinking about it as a metaphor. How many times do we take out our frustrations with life by biting into a bad apple? I know I've spent sleepless nights being mad about something I'm powerless to change. I've also snapped at people I love, given myself headaches and made myself generally miserable all in the name of frustration or anger. I end up punishing myself for the very thing that I'm furious or frustrated about. If that's not a slice of poisonous apple than I don't know what is. Next time she bites into these apples I'm going to use it as a reminder that life is hard enough. There's no need to take bites of bad apples.