People don’t talk about their feelings a lot, I don’t, though I tell other people to. “A problem shared is a problem halved.” “If you have any problems, I’m here, to listen.” Maybe it’s selfish, me listening to other people’s chaotic and sometimes miserable lives. It makes me feel better, that I’m not alone in the fact I have no idea what I’m doing. But when the introduction comes to ask about me, I’ll often reflect it back onto the other person with a tactical phrase like “oh yeah, I’m doing fine, same old same old, but thats not important how are you with….”.
I’ve been told what I do is ‘guarding’, a defence mechanism which stops me from showing any cracks or spills. A deep breath, a big smile and a “I’m fine, don’t be silly.” Then when I’m away from people who have real problems, it all slips and spins and really I don’t know how I’ll react. How I see it is that you’re more than welcome into my house, have a seat in the living room, the loos down the corridor but please, don’t open any of the doors.
Today, (you don’t know when I’m writing this so who knows when ‘today’ is!) I was so angry and this time I didn’t bite my tongue. Quite frankly I was right to be angry, this person hurt me. Left me a blubbering ugly mess and to make it worse my eyeliner and mascara, which believe me took FOREVER to put on was ruined! But the most infuriating part of today was that I felt the need to apologise. And I did. Because, when I look at it now, blaming tiredness/my period/medication, for something I wasn’t sorry about was an easier cover up than having to explain my feelings.
I was talking to my mum about the feeling of loss and mourning for her degree she’s doing at the moment and she stated a very interesting idea: “A hierarchy of grief” the idea being that there is a silent social construct of ‘who’ is allowed to feel and ‘who’ isn’t. An idea that maybe some people are more likely to encourage their own allowance of sympathy without being empathetic, while others can be empathetic but not disclosing their allowance of sympathy for others to feel. I don’t know, I’ll let you read her essays for that, but just something to mull over I guess.
*Audible sigh* I guess today is not a day for answers but instead hopefully a progress.
A message from editing Izzy:
So I’m not going to post this publicly (e.g. Tell people on twitter, IG, and FB to come read this) because I only want to advertise positive vibes, but, if you are reading this, hey, nice one getting through this splurge. But also, what I really hope you take away from this is:
1. If you can relate to this, you’re not alone, though you may feel like it now.
2. Just writing this allowed me to calm down, maybe give it a go, it doesn’t have to be as publicly, but make something malleable and get those thoughts down.
3. I’m here, someone’s there, for you. For me right now, I don’t know who that person is, but I know that there is someone, and one day I’ll find a way to talk to them, but for now, I’ll just “fake it till I make it!”
Till (a hopefully more up-beat) next time…
(Ooo moody metaphorical image about looking into the distance, Izzy Collins you’re a walking cliché) ((Pic credit to Fin))