I’ve always been a deep feeler and a deep thinker. I’m a people pleaser, a helper and a listener. I absorb the mood and feelings of those around me. I put myself in other’s shoes. I think and analyze and question, everything.
In the past, I could feel and think and stuff it all away. I could stay busy being a taskmaster, pleasing and helping and listening, and only allow for a minimal amount of idle time in order to keep from really feeling it all. I built a wall and only allowed so much behind it, only let so much escape. In doing so, I could be genuine and honest and loving, but I could also logically handle most anything that came my way. On the outside, at least. I just stuffed the emotion down deep. I ignored the sensory overload. But, that continual overload took a toll, the stuffing away of my emotions and hiding behind that wall took a toll, both physically and emotionally. Eventually, it was too much. I couldn’t do it anymore. I needed to break down the wall, begin to feel it all and sense it all and deal with it all. I had to allow myself to feel vulnerable.
This emotional openness and vulnerability I have now has allowed a freedom I didn’t know I could feel and it’s not isolated to my relationship with M. This level of exposure has permeated all areas of my life and it’s not something I’ve ever experienced before. The more I let go, the more of my faulty thinking I faced, the shame and guilt I purged, the more raw I felt. For a time, I felt so raw, I didn’t really want to be around other people besides M and the girls. I felt as if I’d been cracked wide open, so raw and naked out here in the real world. I wanted to hide behind M, I needed to find my footing and figure out how to handle the constant, overwhelming emotion and the never-ending sensory input. All that same stuff I used to feel and sense and stuff away, every day.
I’ve become much more comfortable, as I embrace the wonder of experiencing the well of life’s emotions and the breadth of what I sense. It’s unbelievable. I see the entire world more clearly than I ever have before. Yet, there are times when this emotional exposure leaves me feeling as if I get so easily overwhelmed, in all areas of my life, both sensory and emotionally. I’m a wife, a mom, a laboror, a sister, a daughter, along with wearing a number of other hats in a days time. All those roles requiring and needing attention, all taking from my well or providing a cacophony of sensory input, filling that well to over full. Occasionally, I get so overwhelmed, I want to shut down. I want to make it stop, even if just for a while, but I cannot. I’m busy absorbing and wearing hats, but I end up not being able to give the proper attention to any one of the roles. It’s just too much, I don’t know how to protect myself on these days. I don’t have any reserves to tap into anymore nor do I have the ability to stuff things away or ignore. I just feel it all until I’m so overwhelmed.
The thing is, that’s life. This shit is going to happen. There are going to be days where the shit just keeps hitting the fan, when every single thing is emotionally taxing. There will be days when everything is too loud, too cold or too hot, smells nasty and tastes like shit. M can’t always come to my rescue. I can’t always hide behind him in every situation, I have to stand on my own two feet. I want to. I do, most days, and with a smile on my face, knowing he’ll always be my safe place, knowing I carry some of his strength with me. But, some days, I just want to hide. Some days I need to be rescued.