Forgetting Sadness

In all the days I’ve forgotten to count
I let myself forget sadness,
though it would not be forgotten.

I tried to ignore it, pretended
it wasn’t sitting
in the same chair
in the same room,
that it had gone on vacation and
would never return.

I actively avoided it and pretended
we had never met
All because I was afraid of it,
Afraid of feeling it too fully.
I was afraid I would get lost inside of it,
loose myself in its labyrinthine corridors,
that I would never find my way out again.

I forgot that there is always a way out
That an entrance can also be an exit

And that nothing is scarier
than something

– 3/20/2016

It’s funny how things you don’t really deal with just circle around and around, staying close by, until you finally get it. Until you look them in the eyes and acknowledge their presence.

I can’t say I’ve fully gotten it now, but I recognize the importance again, still. It’s deepened.

I’ve been thinking about my reluctance to feel sadness. How not wanting to be sad anymore has gotten me to anesthetize my life, actively avoiding things (relationships, hey-o!) in order to reduce my chances of pain.

The last 5-6 years of my life most definitely. I never enjoyed sadness before, but I let it happen. I’d watch sad movies, let myself feel, and then move on to whatever came next. I haven’t intentionally watched a sad movie in years. I’ve been missing out on a lot of great experiences because of it.

I’m trying to slowly let sadness back in. Remind myself it doesn’t have to be all-consuming. It’s healthy. The flip side of the coin.

I know I’ve been cheating myself, hiding from it. I feel like a coward at times, but with this growing awareness I am also finding sympathy for the girl that needed to remove herself from the pain of losing and being lost. Of hurting and being hurt. It’s been a long journey.

I’m still shaky. But I am trying.

I even went on a date! I know, who am I?? Well, I’m no less awkward. Still struggling with the doubt monster, the self-sabotaging, the insecurity and – of course – fear of sadness.

Generally in life, I always imagine the worst case scenario – BAM – right out of the gate. In some ways, I think it helps to know what awfulness could be the total worst and then realize – ‘hell! that’s so unlikely!’ in order to move forward. I’ve also learned that, sometimes, things are much worse than even you, who is so good at imagining it, can imagine. I’ve always been a planner. I carry around a massive purse filled with just about everything I could ever need at a moments notice. Imagining the worst is like tucking away a tide-to-go stick into my mental purse. You expected this; now lets get that stain out.

I’ve already imagined the worst, post-date.

I feel oddly comforted that a friend had the exact same thought as me when we chatted about it. Made it seem less far-fetched. Made me feel a bit less ridiculous. It also, unfortunately, re-emphasized that it very well could be the truth of the situation. That it was only some sort of elaborate retribution or repayment. I hope very much I’m wrong. But, you see, I just can’t help but think, of the many threads that led me here, that lead us away from here, that could certainly be one.

It has me frozen again. I want reassurance. I want to give reassurance. I want to be patient; I want to act. I’ve skirted around sadness so long, it could be it’s chosen this to subtly remind me of its presence.

All I know for sure is, it’s time to stop being afraid. I need to let in pain, sadness, discomfort. I need to grow. I need to feel life fully.

And, step by step, that is exactly what I intend to do.

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