Don't let anger rule you!
I can't believe you left the Astilbe plants out in the sun. They are supposed to be planted in the shade," growled Din Din the dinosaur.
His younger brother Derek lowered his head, "Oh! I forgot to move them in the shade last evening before we went home."
"Just see how its flowers are beginning to wilt," ranted Din Din. "It's such a delicate plant with such feathery flowers. They have been out in the searing sunlight all this morning.
"I said I'm sorry!' repeated Derek. "I can make a mistake you know!"
"You make mistakes all the time!" Din Din yelled. "Just get out of my precious garden; I thought you enjoyed gardening so I let you help out. If I had known how irresponsible you are I would never have let you near my beloved plants and flowers."
Derek wanted to blurt out several answers but none of them would have been the appropriate thing to say to an elder brother.
Instead, he just stomped off in the direction of Fruit Park where the dinosaurs lived.
His mother was making her famed chocolates and the irresistibly familiar and comforting scent of chocolate melting over a fire greeted Derek when he entered his cave home.
"Hello, Derek dear. Come have a taste of my chocolate. It's a new recipe I have tried with hazelnuts," his mother offered cheerfully.
"No thanks, Mother," muttered Derek.
Mrs. Dee turned around, surprise written all over her face. "You are refusing chocolate? Is something wrong, dear?"
"It's Din Din again. He lost his temper at me again today over a mistake I made while helping him tend to plants in his garden patch," explained Derek tearfully. "Mother, why does Din Din get angry so easily. Every small thing seems to upset him these days. He takes out his wrath on me or Don or Dave," added Derek mentioning his younger brothers.
Mrs. Dee came and sat down near Derek on his bunk bed which was a shelf in the cave wall. "I'm sorry that you are upset, dear. Squabbles happen between siblings. But I do agree that Din Din's temper has been flaring up a lot these days."
That night when Din Din returned home, he was still in a foul mood. He refused to sit with the rest of the family for dinner and went to sleep after having a bath. Din Din's father disapproved. "It is so important for the whole family to sit together for dinner. That is the one time of the day we can talk peacefully and come closer as a family. It's very wrong of Din Din to turn his back on a meal like this as well as shun his family."
Later when the brothers were asleep, Mr. D and Mrs. Dee put their heads together to discuss what exactly was bothering Din Din.
"It's his adolescence phase," justified Mrs. Dee. "There is so much pressure on kids today especially in school and with peers.”
"I will talk to him tomorrow," Mr. D reassured his wife.
The next day was a Saturday and there was no school. Din Din was in his garden from dawn weeding his plants, when his father came up to him.
"Father?" asked Din Din in surprise. "What brings you here?
"You left home very early and I did not get to meet you, so I thought I'd pay you a visit. I thought you might be here," smiled his father.
Once father and son were seated under a shady oak tree Mr. D said, "You know Din Din, I had a terrible temper when I was younger, but I worked very hard to control it because my anger created a lot of trouble for me. I had begun to lose my close friends and my family members were beginning to get embarrassed by my outbursts," revealed Mr D.
Din Din's father sighed, "I don't want you to go through the same problems. I want you to learn from my experience.
Din Din lowered his head, "But how, Father? When I get angry I just can't seem to control my tongue or my reactions!"
"I understand. I can see that you have made a fence around your garden patch. Promise me one thing, just hammer a nail in the fence whenever you get angry," said Mr. D.
Din Din seemed taken aback. How would that help him control his temper, he wondered but he nodded his head in agreement. "I promise."
That day when he got angry at Derek for forgetting to trim the hedges in his garden he angrily hammered a nail in his fence with all his might instead of lashing out at his brother.
When his mother served him beetroot stew which he hated, he rushed to his garden and hammered another nail.
On Sunday when Dazel splashed him with water at the lake even though he was not in a mood to get wet, he held onto his temper with all his will and ran to the fence to hammer yet another nail.
By the end of that week his fence was filled with nails but Din Din was exhausted from the effort it took to rush to his garden and hammer a nail.
At night, his father came to Din Din's bedside to bid him good night. "So, my son! How many nails did you manage to hammer in the fence?"
"50," Din Din revealed in shame.
"Well done!" congratulated his father.
"Why are you congratulating me?" asked a surprised Din Din.
"You see the 50 nails in the fence, but for me it's 50 times this week that you have controlled your anger and instead of taking it out on another creature and damaging a relationship, you have just damaged a fence," explained Mr. D with a warm smile.
Din Din felt all his aggression melt away as he basked in his father's proud smile.
"All you have to do is think before you speak and express whatever has upset you when you are calmer. Vent out your frustration in some sort of physical activity and you are sure to feel much better. And last but not the least, don't hesitate to say sorry if you are wrong. Remember that everyone can make mistakes including you," said Mr. D.
"Father, thank you," said Din Din humbly. "I don't know what had come over me recently. I was just angry at everything around me. But knowing that I can control my anger and not let it control me, makes me feel stronger."
And that night Din Din slept more soundly than he had in weeks.
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