Today after spending my morning writing I was trapped in a room with Sam Smith music for an hour. The perfect storm of catharsis, lack of citalopram – since Christmas which I was proud of -, and sad poetry had me sobbing in the staff bathroom.
I called a friend who suggested that I allow myself to feel but previous experience has taught me that expressing those feelings come back to bite you. For example, a family drama that involved a sociopathic relation caused me to breakdown in front of my mother who then brought it up as a joke a few weeks later. I was in an argument with someone I care about greatly over Christmas who said that my emotional weakness was a symptom of male ego. Just the other week, one of my senior managers handed me “toughen up pills” when I explained why I was limping.
So how can I allow myself to feel in a hostile environment? One of my favorite lines is: “there is no emotion, there is peace” from Star Wars. I’m fully aware of the point and I see peace on the horizon.
Yet, in this moment as I write I am very thankful for the box of citalopram buried at the bottom of my work bag.
Not very stoic, I know. But perhaps a self awareness and reflection is. I feel myself slipping further and further away from my old philosophical neighborhoods, the only certainty is that this too shall pass. It’s a nice thought but entirely unhelpful in the throws of a break down.
I feel pathetic. Should I? Or should I accept my feelings. I know the answer, obviously. Yet it feels like a pyrrhic and bitter victory.
Perhaps the curse of reconnecting with our own humanity is having to feel it. It would be helpful if the world wasn’t so hostile and hypocritical towards feeling. Yet, as the philosopher Jagger once wrote:
“You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometimes you might find, you get what you need.”