June 28, 2016

“Are you okay?”

I heard the beginning of that question and immediately felt a knot clench in my chest. I don’t know why but it felt more like an accusation than concern. Quickly (almost too quickly) I laughed it off. “I’m just tired, but you must be too.” The fatigue showed in his face in that harsh, unforgiving light as I’m sure did mine. The stress was in his rumpled collar and I wanted nothing more than to iron it, but I was a million miles away. I didn’t want to tell him, mainly because my insecurities make me believe he doesn’t actually want to know and my issues are too much for most, such as they are. In fact, it’s hard for me to tell anyone what has been going on.

The simple truth is it’s easier for someone to empathize when the experience is relatable. One finds one has the ability to endure the verbal onslaught of a tsunami of emotions when one can relate to the struggle. Another dimension of this is the comforting/affirmation phase of listening. It’s awkward when you want to console someone or offer advice but can’t because it’s not something you’ve previously experienced or had to deal with. But that’s really only applicable to the emotionally immature. My point is, venting can be a burden.

I know I have good friends I can call out to for help, but sometimes you get so beaten down that you need someone to reach out to you or just sit in the muck with you. But it’s never fair to expect that from your friends, is it? So perhaps some things you really do need to battle alone. Because you’re just too tired, sad, afraid, and hurt. I don’t know. Maybe that’s what being an adult means. I can’t say I appreciate him asking but it made me realize that no, I am not okay. I am all sorts of anxious greys and sad blacks. My heart is withering and stiffening and it’s downcast where I hide.

I will be okay, eventually.

I hope it’s soon.

I don’t want to be sad anymore.


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