Working through my current issues of depression, I’ve been soul-searching, attempting to put a finger on what the underlying issue is. I was reading a fellow blogger’s website earlier and he mentioned getting attuned to the underlying issues and remembering that there is no “fix” but to accept what is and to embrace those failings.
I’ve spent my life unable to share my real thoughts and feelings, when they are too high or too low for society’s standards. Putting on a good face and always smiling even when I’m crying inside. Don’t rock the boat. Don’t make others uncomfortable. It’s always been only through my art and my writing that I’ve allowed myself to show my true colors.
But sometimes those colors spill over into real life. Tainting a picture I’ve carefully set before the world around me. Fighting it at times and, when I can, embracing it. The normal coping methods aren’t working.
As I was thinking about it, I was attributing my depression to recent loss and rejection. I’ve been rejected by friends and potential lovers, among other things. In the big scheme of life, these are mere trifles, insignificant and unimportant. I’ve tricked myself into telling myself “I deserve love” “I deserve happiness” “I deserve acceptance”. But the truth is, I don’t deserve any of those ideas. I might want them, but I don’t deserve them. Love and happiness and loyalty and acceptance aren’t a human right. They are either given or they are not. I’m still a human with or without them.
So perhaps it’s not rejection that’s got me down. Maybe it’s simply wanting things I can’t have and like a little child who doesn’t get their way, I stamp my feet and pout and let the world know of the perceived injustice done to me. I wanted him. He wasn’t meant to be mine. My heart, refusing to give up or believe it, mopes and laments a loss that never really happened anywhere but in my dreams. (And as I pulled back from interacting with him, he did nothing in response, which should clue me in to how little I meant to him to begin with.) Another friendship blossomed quickly and from an unexpected source and I came to rely on him daily but when life swooped in and took him further and further from me, I had to admit I was much lower down his list of priorities than I had hoped.
Pitiful, huh? Pathetic. And that’s when it hit me, I’ve been relying on others once again a bit too heavily. I know the only one I can truly count on is myself. Why did I build those walls so long ago in the first case? Oh yeah. That’s right. Because I am an island. I can count on myself but not on others. It’s my own failing, really. I attach myself to a special few and I cement myself to them. And when they pull themselves free and move on, as is normal in life, I take it personally and have a hard time dealing with the loss. I hold on too tight. And so feelings of rejection settle in. Then depression and sadness. I mourn the loss rather than celebrating what was.
A better way of thinking would be to say, yeah, he wasn’t meant to be yours but his words still speak to your soul nearly every time he picks up his pen. Embrace that. Enjoy what you have of him. And the friendship that was put on the shelf: perhaps it was just what you both needed for that time and perhaps it will pick back up and perhaps it won’t. Let his words of kindness sink into your skin and wrap your mind in the warmth of kindred minds and friendship. Et cetera, Et cetera.
So I’m going to keep repeating to myself that I’m okay and that I’m alright being alone and the tears will continue to fall but there’s no one to see them anyway so… let them fall. And the longing and the loneliness will continue to be my bedfellows but I’ll be alright. This is my lot in life. Love will come and go. So too friendships and acceptance and rejections and happiness and sadness. It’s the human condition. Lift your head, allow the tears to pour from your soul but also allow them to dry as well. And stop looking to others to make you whole or happy. It’s all just an illusion, anyway.
tara caribou | ©2017
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