The last few days I have been really emotional. Or maybe emotional isn’t the right word. I’ve just been sad. It’s not a permanent sadness – just the kind that flits in a few days a month acting like it belongs and then flies away. Nothing serious, hardly worthy of a post.
It’s hard for me to be ok with this, coming from an environment where emotions were treated like they were part of the Curse that Genesis says Adam and Eve ushered in to the world. Being sad, angry or stressed weren’t very acceptable. There was always a pat answer given. “Take something.” “The joy of the Lord is your strength.” “Read the last five chapters of Psalms aloud.”
None of this was necessarily bad advice. But what I learned from it was that the right course of action were to suppress any emotion that was considered “bad”. Instead of discussing things like a normal external processor, (because no one ever thought anything was worthy of further discussion or something) I internalize my stress, my sadness, my fears. That internalization paralyzes me.
I call it “survival mode”. It’s really quite pathetic. I don’t clean or read or do anything productive. I survive until I am feeling up for the challenge of doing the dishes or taking the garbage out.
This is embarrassing to admit out loud. Mostly because anyone who is on Team Pretend Everything Is Ok are typically a mocking bunch. “What’s wrong with you? Why do you let stuff bug you?”
I’ve heard it so many times it echos in my head every time things aren’t 100%. “Why does this bother you? Pretend it’s ok. Suck it up.”
To give myself some credit, I have tried. I tried for many years to be the person who was wholly unaffected by jackasses and their taunting. And I’ve come to realize that I can’t do it.
I’m not trying to have a pity party or to make it sound like my life was terrible. My life wasn’t terrible but how I was told to behave and respond ran contrary to who I am as a person.
This stage of life is really enjoyable. Marriage, in large part, is to help you heal. Especially this part – the beginning. And it’s nice to not be rejected every time I’m sad or stressed. I’m allowed to be honest and how I’m feeling and – more importantly for me – it’s ok to just feel it. And that makes me really happy.