Suffering

When I step out into the world I feel like my suffering is showing.  Like toilet paper stuck to my shoe or my skirt tucked into my underwear.

They can see my suffering.

They can see it on my face like a wart, or a boil or an open oozing sore.  Maybe they wonder to themselves, what’d she do?  That’s gross.  Cover it up.

Not only is it ugly, it’s so profoundly isolating, this sorrow.

The more I reach out and speak, the more isolated I feel.

They don’t want to hear about it.  It’s too much.  They don’t know what to say.

I am tired of being the one to need.

I feel shame.  I feel weak.  The sadness in my heart is just a pit sometimes, that has no bottom at all.

Everyone has the same advice: time heals.  Perspective is good.  Take care of you.

I am tired.  So tired.  I have endured so very much in the past 7 months, I can’t believe it.  I get the constant reminder to be grateful for the health of my children, and my own.

I am.

But friends, as it turns out, gratitude does not erase sorrow.

Gratitude does not heal.  They are two such separate and distinct things.

Focusing on the positive is an ideal thing to do.  But it doesn’t remove the negative, nor does it lessen the pain.

These things, as it turns out, must be faced head on.

The new bar for me is simply survival.  If something makes me smile, it’s a bonus.  If I feel a fleeting moment of freedom, peace, or hope, I notice.

There is so much heaviness and darkness in my heart.  So much sadness.  And, now, the thing I was most afraid of: anger.

I am afraid of anger, because I am afraid of bitterness.  And I am not sure how to separate those two things.

But here is where meditation helps.

I will not put a head on my head.  I will simply say, I am feeling Anger.  This is part of me.

I don’t need to feel grateful, or focus on the positive.

I need to feel all the feels with loving compassion.

So do we all.

Can’t go over it, can’t go under it.

Nope.  Gotta go through it.

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