Feelings

It has been a roller-coaster of emotions for me these past eight weeks. On many days I have coped by blocking my emotions out. I have either acted by automatic pilot, and / or kept myself very busy, doing anything except taking the time to stop and simply feel my emotions. At other times, my emotions have poured out of me like a torrent of water from a broken tap that would not stop, and I felt things deeply.

My writing stopped for several weeks.

Then when I started writing my journal again, I wrote in a staccato, factual fashion, with no depth of feeling. That was because I was finding it very difficult to process five or six different emotions all at once. It became easier to describe what was happening, rather than how I was feeling. How could I describe all that I have been feeling? All the time my mind has been blank, yet racing at a thousand miles a second. How could I describe that?

Earlier this year I had been working through my transformation to the new me; beginning with my foundations of comfort, then moving on to my foundations of freedom, and the freedom to discover myself. As part of that process I had reached a point where I began to feel my own feelings. Like a light coming on, I realized that I had a right to those feelings, and a right to express those feelings. To some people, that may seem like a strange discovery. Not for me. To me, this was a revolution happening. It was a huge change.

For many years I had been suppressing how I really felt, I had been suppressing the true me inside myself. I was the product of growing up as the introverted sister with two extroverted siblings. I became the product of the introverted wife married to the ultra-extroverted husband. I learned to play the part of second fiddle. I learned to fix and support but never shine. I learned to think that I did not matter, that my feelings did not count, that my opinions were not that important, that what I did was not significant.

Earlier this year I found my own significance and my own feelings began to surface. When I began to feel my feelings and recognize them as my own feelings, I wrote down as the first part of my life purpose “to find my voice and speak my truth“. In other words, I had resolved, to not only act true to myself, but to also begin to speak out about being true to myself. I resolved to begin telling my whole story, to voice out loud how I really felt inside my heart and to express what I really thought, rather than what I thought other people would expect of me.

Then life got in the way.

Before I had a chance to write my story (the story that had been), more of life began happening. Life unfolded in an expected and sudden way and I was swept along by a stream of emotions: joy and sadness, hope and desperation, elation and disappointment, aloneness and togetherness, comfort and distress, brokenness and harmony, confusion and clarity, quandary and resolution, closed and open, indecisiveness and decisiveness, anger and calmness.

At first I could not process them, to feel them. Then I did. I began to feel them. Some of them hurt, yet I allowed myself to feel their intensity.  The numbness that had been blocking out my emotions lifted. It had been so foreign to me to allow myself to feel any emotions. It was even more foreign to express those emotions.

Yet, to feel them is to live more fully, to express them is to become true to myself.

To write about them is now, for me, a necessity.

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Images:Courtesy[Africa]FreeDigitalPhotos.net

16 thoughts on “Feelings

  1. Elizabeth, your rollercoaster ride sounds so familiar. After my divorce–I was 5 mos. pregnant when my husband and my friend decided they were soulmates–for more than a year it was not uncommon to have five or six emotions battling each other on any given day. Bless you, and keep putting one foot in front of the other, moving forward on your journey.

    • I cannot imagine how I would have coped through all that when pregnant. Have you read Nora Ephron’s book ‘Heartburn’. It is a novel but it is based on her husband Carl Berstein (of ‘All The President’s Men fame) leaving her when she was pregnant. She went on to became one of the most influential female movie producers of all time… but at the time she became an outspoken voice for the heartbreak experienced by abandoned women. Yes, I will keep moving those feet forward.

  2. This is beautiful Elizabeth, thankyou for sharing. This is a wonderful discovery of self that will guide you to fullness and joy.

    I must share this wonderful poem that I read on “Laurie’s Gentle Healing notes” which expresses how feeling our emotions and honouring them, gives us freedom and peace in our life.

    http://lauriesnotes.com/2014/11/06/in-the-silence-of-my-being/

    In the silence of my being,
    there is room for all that is true,
    including grief –
    grief once covered up,
    renamed and silenced –
    only to create more grief,
    layers and layers of sadness
    hidden underneath
    so many attempts to fix it –
    grief that needed
    only to be honored
    and to be felt.

  3. Hi Elizabeth,
    I understand both, life getting in the way of writing, and the need to write.
    I agree with the comment that said your wisdom is a gift to us all. It indeed is!
    You gave names to emotions that I didn’t even know I was feeling. You are certainly are an inspiration and I am sorry for never saying it!
    Blessings! 🙂

    • Me too. By that I mean that I did not really realize I was experiencing so many emotions until I attempted to write them down. Writing them down has allowed me to separate them and address them one by one (or at least start to).
      Thanks for your encouragement. I appreciate it.

  4. I am so sad that you have had to endure so much in such a short amount of time. I hope you will use this emotional roller coaster, as you have done in the past, to share, motivate and express those feelings. We all are here, hoping to help and learn. Each person’s story adds to a river which leads to an ocean, where we all can swim happily together, making it through our journeys. “Leaning in,” is such a nice and relevant expression, these days. Hugs to you, Elizabeth! You have come a long way, friend!

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