I was having a glass of wine on the front step last night with Zoe and mentioned the ball of anger that sits in my chest like a permanent fixture. It swells and subsides, but it's always present, has been for most of my life. It's waiting. I can see it erupting later, when I'm not so committed to having a productive life.
But there's days when it sits in my throat, like this morning while reading the papers, and this afternoon when I tried to sew bookblocks whilst listening to Radio Eye. It was an hour of stories about abuse to women of various forms (honour killings, sexual abuse). I'm so angry, and I don't know what to do with it.
I'm going to a dinner party tonight. Best Beloved is catering it as an Indian Feast, his wedding present to a couple of good friends. I've cooked some of the food, and I'm meant to be dressing in my Indian gear and contributing to the feast by serving the food. I'm scared I'm in the wrong mood. I don't know if I can be jolly, let alone even civil.
What do you do with a throbbing ball of anger?
I am full of questions, and the overwhelming one is this:
How can anyone think that a woman escaping an abusive marriage is a worse shame to a family than the shame of a community knowing that you are a family that kills a family member?
I have to breathe deep. I need some equilibrium.
PS. My ball of anger is, I think, why I love Helen Garner. I relate to her angriness. I loved her novel. It's not for everyone, but it was a good couple of hours for me.