Saturday, 13 October 2012

Just When I Think I'm Done

How many of you feel like life has fucked you over more than once? Don’t feel excluded if you are yet to lose that virginity. You will sooner or later join the onslaught life has issued upon us; life will not forget you, m’dear. Nor will this battlefield ever be one you may retire from.

Y’know those people, the ones that seem completely oblivious to any sort of negative feelings? They go through my head. The ones that have had no major issues in their lives that they’ve had to overcome. Those folk that turn their noses up at even the mention of emotions. The ‘E’ and ‘F’ words, as my friend used to say. These words were as good as forbidden from all conversations. You do not express or even imply them; they were unacceptable. The words? Emotions and feelings. A friend once summed up and slashed emotional distress saying “As long as you’re not dead, you’re fine.” It actually fascinates me that people can say that. It’s one thing to be living stress and worry free, but it’s a whole other ball game when you start to belittle those of us that have actually had rough times.

Is it simply that karma massively dislikes us? Have we made too many mistakes to redeem ourselves? Or from birth were we destined to be fuck-ups? To a certain extent you can predict when things will take a turn for the worst, i.e. terminally ill relative, relationships breaking down. But what about those heart-wrenching pains that come out of the blue. The ones that leave us cursing the Heavens and asking ‘Why me?’ Or in my case, ‘Why me again?’

Perhaps sometimes we deserve it. We do wrong; wrong is done to us. An eye for an eye. Seems fair, right? But what happens when you can no longer cancel out the hurt being caused to you. When bad things happen to bad people, they learn from them. Everyone learns from their mistakes. Personal experience in this learning led me to believe I was finished with my fair share of encounters with karma, yet here we are again. You’d think after this much poison I’d be immune, but no. The worst part is that it affects every aspect of your being. Physical, emotional and mental healths are all connected. If you are suffering emotionally, it can affect your physical welfare also.

Eating more or eating less, change in sleeping patterns, not showering or caring for your appearance; these are all signs that you’re suffering in one way or another. I once spent one whole solitary week in those conditions – my only movement was from the sofa to my bed. Stress and worry are a deadly concoction. My immune system seems to fall victim to this duo every time. Here’s a funny (not really) fact – during my Junior Cert year I missed more time off school than I had missed in my eight primary school years, all down to my emotional health falling short of the “average” mark, shall we say. It’s said that if you miss even one maths class, you will be miles behind. I laugh when I hear this; I missed over forty.

How does one cope with this never-ending cycle of torture? Although I can tick almost every box on the ‘Ways to Get Hurt’ list, I still don’t know that answer. I could, however, advise you on things not to do.

1.       Do Not End Your Social Life:

Sitting in a dark room, crying to ‘Bleeding Love’ is not going to do you any favours. Going through a tough time is when your friends need to step up and say to your headphones “Bro please, I got this”. Surround yourself in happy people. Yes, they are very irritating at the best of times, but you will be thankful that something other than your worries is grabbing your attention. For a while, at least.


2.       Focus More On Things You Enjoy:

I’m imagining you have the energy of so many emotions just eating you up inside, so why not express them in something you love? Be it a sport you excel in or an art class you could join, focus this energy on whatever you have a passion for and turn it from negative to positive. For me, writing poetry was a saviour. I’m not always one to talk so this helped when all else failed. If you’re in the same boat – try it. I don’t care if people think what I do is pathetic and weird; it’s helped more than any of them ever have.


3.       Don’t Lose Faith:

I’m quite a hypocrite for saying that but then again this is my ‘Looking Back’ advice. Back in the day, I decided God either hated me or didn’t exist. On the outside I led people to believe I was a downright atheist. In mass I refused to stand up or kneel down, get communion, or even bless myself. But behind closed doors I never completely lost faith. I would pray to the stars or the sky; the only things I felt were looking out for me. I’m not saying my life is perfect because of my underlying faith, but who knows where I’d be without it.

Yes this has been a very personal and biased point, but how else would I get it across?


4.       Remember Nothing Lasts Forever:

This is usually quite a depressing statement, but if you’re going through hell you’ll be damn glad to hear that it’s true. This state of emotional distraught could last two weeks or two years; it won’t last a lifetime. Pain eventually grows old and without noticing, it will vanish. Whatever the case, don’t forget how to be happy. This may sound ridiculous but you’d be surprised how accustomed you get to feeling down and worthless. It may have been warm and cosy in that little emotion-filled hut-for-one you had going on there, but it’s time to re-join the world and dismiss the calling of your defensive outer shell.


Now I’m no counsellor and maybe I’ve just wasted your time, writing about things you already know, but if I could even help one person it will have been worth sharing some secrets of my ‘dark side’. The one I so rarely speak of. Intrigued yet?

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