I’m always writing philosophical things. (Have you noticed? ;))
But what’s really getting at me isn’t all this philosophical stuff. At least I don’t think so.
Maybe it’s just the reality – what’s right in front of me. I avoid talking about what’s right in front of me. Is it too painful to acknowledge? Is it painful to see that someone else’s actions effect me so much, even though I know it’s me responding that really in the end is what hurts me (and maybe them)? Am I avoiding myself by trying to layer meaning and logic and background around my feelings, thoughts, and world around me?
When I was a kid, like others, I had a diary. It had a lock. (It is only much later I discovered the same key opens all those effing locks on kids’ diaries.) I wrote about the things that happened in my life. Day to day things. Like that my friend and I played mancala in the morning before school. That someone bullied me on the bus and it hurt. That my brother and I had a fight about markers and it made me sad.
I don’t remember even placing judgments on the things that happened. I just stated them. I knew exactly how I felt about those things. I knew exactly what happened in front of me (or at least in my minds’ eye). I didn’t question myself. I didn’t question what happened. I didn’t question what the other person was feeling or if that made what I feel valid. I just wrote and I felt. And it was okay. Feelings changed. Life changed. Everything was novel. The feelings were mine, no one else’s. And my diary was mine to read, no one else’s.
There is a part of me that is frustrated by all of this. That part is saying that life is much more nuanced as you get older. Life isn’t black and white. The older you get, the more grey you see. But then the child part of me says “But we aren’t talking about life and what happens outside of your body. We’re talking about what is inside of you – and that is just there. You just have to listen.”
The oppositional part of me rebelling is at least curious to hear what the child would say about today. So speak it simply, young N.
“Today, I felt happy to be with my friends. I especially liked cuddling with C and connecting with her and crying and seeing her and being seen. I liked cuddling with M and talking. I liked playing games with A and M. I liked having dinner with a lot of people. But it got a bit tiring to be around people after a short bit. I decided to start writing because it was too much. I also felt excluded. L keeps ignoring me and I don’t know what I did to her to deserve that treatment. I don’t know why she won’t talk to me about it. It makes me sad and it makes me frustrated that now she lives here and she refuses to acknowledge this and especially when I’m around my friends, whom she is also quickly befriending. I don’t think I deserve this treatment, but I’d like to know what issue she has with me. I’d be open and interested in hearing, but she won’t talk about it. It makes me sad because I really wanted to be her and S’s friend. It makes me sad because now she is apparently fine with A…but still not me. I’ve been insecure that A is acting physically close with others and I don’t feel emotionally close to him or don’t feel it reciprocated. I’ve been afraid of him connecting with people who live so freely with their heart and love – even though I used to be like them. Or maybe because I used to be like them. And that is who A fell in love with. And I’m not anymore. I’m afraid to be me.”
Usually, I would analyze this extensively. Try to figure out *why* and what can be done in the future to fix it. Not that it ever helps.
But maybe i should just sit with this. These are my feelings. I’m allowed them. I don’t need to prove them, fight for them, argue with them, repress them, or act on them. I just need to feel them. That’s it. Sadness. Loss. Frustration. Insecurity.
I breathe in and out. In. Out. A lump in my throat. Is that sadness? Fear? Tension in my head. Twinges in my stomach. I’ve been trying to pinpoint the sensations and their associated emotions. I’m still at a loss. Emotions are so complex. How does one ever point to one’s body and say *this* is my emotion. This one singular emotion?
So many of our emotions spring from a complex of emotions we felt previously in past situations. Are those clues? This lump in my throat feels like the time when my girlfriends in elementary school began to ignore me or my friends in high school stopped inviting me to their gatherings. People I thought were going to be my forever BFF’s. Exclusion. Loss. This tension in my stomach reminds me of the stress and fear of high school in being myself; fear of rejection and fear of not being heard. Fear. Sadness. Loss. The tension in my head when I can’t understand and won’t be given the opportunity to understand something about someone I love or about a situation I’m in. Frustration. Something more. Something about lack of being given an opportunity to be heard.
Usually, I would say this doesn’t bring me anywhere new. But I try to let that go. The idea of progress. As though life goes in some linear fashion. All there is is right now anyway.
Breathe in. Breathe out.
Maybe eventually this won’t just feel like words I tell myself.