Sunday, December 15, 2013

Share the Love, not the Misery

"Negativity and misery loves company! I choose NOT to join any of you people! Having wonderful days and things are just as they should be! Spreading happiness and tranquility to everyone!"

A friend of mine posted this as a status update earlier this week. As I was shovelling snow that night before I went on online, I was thinking about how social media allows people to fall into the role of "victim" and makes it easy for their friends to feel sorry for them. I'm guilty of allowing it to do that to me. I have left my social media accounts often, usually for a couple of weeks. This time I just came back on the day before my friend posted those words of wisdom.

When I decided to leave my virtual world behind this time, I was in a mood and didn't want to have the temptation available to fall into the victim role again. I brooded alone for days, weeks, even months. I kept my pain and hurt to myself as much as I could, but it would leak out occasionally, usually surprising me while I was driving or sitting at my desk at work. Often I would have to dash to the washroom to collect myself where I would scold myself for crying. My meltdown finally came Friday after work. Friday the 13th. My favourite day! I was having a party that night even! I planned the party when I was feeling low, hoping that it would lift my spirits even if I didn't want to be around people. It's always good to be surrounded by and supported by your close friends, though.

I laid down after work to have a nap and it just wasn't working. The dog was pacing around, I was tossing and turning and then I started to cry, bawl even. It sounded horrid. When I have those kinds of days in the summer I wonder what my neighbours must think when they hear the wailing through an open window! I'm not sure why but when I am in that emotional state, talking with a friend and/or getting a hug from a friend just makes me bawl even more. I came to realize Friday that I still have some work to do on giving myself permission to grieve, to feel, to release emotions. It doesn't matter so much "why" I feel the need to cry. It matters that I accept that I feel that way, allow myself to feel the emotion and make time to feel it. Dismissing it or scolding myself is not very productive or emotionally healing.

Over the past few months I have experienced a lot of emotional losses. The death, if you will, of a lengthy physical relationship; the chaos of a long-distance friendship turned romance turned...well, into nothing at the moment; and now a new journey, with its own ups and downs, trying my best to be supportive to a friend who turns the communication on and off like a kid playing with a light switch!

It leads me to the same question time and time again: How can I be there for someone and help them pick up their pieces if I can't even pick up my own pieces sometimes? I've learned that I need a partner who is emotionally stronger than I am but not cold, unable to show empathy, insensitive or withdraws from emotion. I wonder if I will ever find that person. I've accepted that it's okay if I don't. I have many friends and family that care for me more than I can imagine! All I need to do is ask for help and they will be there, not to enable me in the role of victim, but to acknowledge my feelings and help bring me happiness and tranquility. They are my reasonable voice when all reason has left my mind. And for that I can't thank them enough! I love you, friends and family, even when I'm being stubborn and am in a broken hearted mess. In fact, that's probably when I love you the most but show you the least.

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