You know those annoying questionnaires you get… the ones that have been around since the beginning of the interwebs….
- What is your favorite color
- What is someone no one knows about you
- What is your least favorite sound
- What do you fear the most
I’ve never answered those things. Ever. Not only do I not want to post any remotely personal shit to a bunch of strangers who could probably just google it… seriously, I pretty much overshare in any interview I’ve ever given, so all of the info is out there… but I also just don’t want to post a bunch of boring stuff, or what I *think* would be boring to read about me.
- My favorite color is blue and purple. I say that as one color because it changes every day from one to the other and then back again
- If there is something that actually no one knows about me, but me, then there’s a good reason for it and I’m keeping it that way
- Jackhammers, coupled with 100 degree heat while you’re walking by a construction site with thousands of angry, hot New Yorkers shoving you, oh and also you’re being sexually harassed as you’re walking past the construction site
- Like… I’m not even going to hint at it.
The one that always trips me up though, not added to my fancy bulleted list up above, is “what is the worst feeling?” That one always gets me because I’m always struggling with BaD fEeLiNgS. I can never get a fucking handle on them. Ever since I was a child… my process for processing emotional upheaval has always been like a mishmash of confused lumpy oatmeal. I’ve gotten better about it in some ways… but overall, bad experiences leave with me feelings I have trouble processing and are things I just do not want.
I don’t feel like I’m saying anything revolutionary, ground-breaking, or even poignant. Has anyone ever said “Omgarsh I like the bad feelings.”
No. No, they have not.
But what is the *worst* feeling, Jessica? What is it?
I know guilt has been plaguing me ever since… well ever since I started doing things to warrant guilt. So like, that’s been a lifetime of insurmountable bad feelings right there. Guilt. Guilt is fucking awful.
Jealousy is horrid, too. Jealousy is like… god, that will undo anything you’ve ever worked for. You feel like your personal best becomes someone else’s personal laugh.
But I think the worst feeling for me is watching someone slowly lose interest in me and in what I offer and not being able to do anything about it.
Because… you see, with guilt, jealously, and a few other fun emotions, you *do* actually have power to turn that shit around. It’s not easy, and hey some people can’t. I’m not always successful, but I’ve been able to do it in different periods of my life. But my point is that you can actually work through an emotion that you feel and transform it into something else… work with me here, I *know* it seems impossible, but it’s not. If it’s an emotion you feel, you can control it. You actually can.
But here is what you can’t control: other people.
Nope. Not even a little.
Not gonna happen.
I’m not just talking about romantic relationships, though I know that’s the assumption. You’re in love with someone, they slowly start *not* to be, and honestly, cutting off your own arm to beat yourself with it *might* make you feel better, only it won’t. It’s fucking terrible; there’s no way around it.
But it also works for non-romantic relationships, too.
Old friends, friendships that swore they’d stand the test of time… no matter the test… the promises of trust, loyalty and love – no matter what – and then, gradually, they just, fade away.
You make a plan to meet with them, to talk with them. “Hey… what’s going on? Did I do something? Have I said something? Are we ok?”
And then the gas-lighting: “Everything is fine. You’ve done nothing wrong. You’ve said nothing wrong. We are more than ok. I just need some space.”
Queso, here’s the deal: and this is a big fucking newsflash, you don’t need “space” from people who are positive forces of light, laughter, and love in your life. You just don’t. Maybe you’re not around each other 24/7, maybe there are long periods of time that go by when you don’t speak, but none of that is an active choice, it really *could* be that you’re both just busy. So then, that “space” just kind of naturally happens, right? Then it could be like “Wow we haven’t hung out in a while, we’ve got to catch up” and I’m not talking about that.
I’m talking about text messages that take days to be returned, or not at all. I’m talking about that other person saying “It’s not you; I just need to separate from people” then that person is on all social medias, separating from you, and not from other people. I’m talking about conversations going from “I must tell you everything in my life because I value your opinion, your time, your advice and your mind” to “I’m really not talking to anyone about what’s going on with me these days” but you know otherwise, because you see and you hear otherwise so you’re really just being lied to.
You’re know you’re being lied to, and you can’t change it.
The worst sound is not jackhammers. The worst sound is my phone being silent because you’ve stopped talking to me.
That sound is so fucking loud. Why did you stop talking to me? I wish this sound would go away. You’ve hurt me so. You’ve hurt me deeply. Why won’t you tell me why?
I’m angry and I’m sad and do you even think about me? We’ve shared and we’ve loved and we’ve survived.
I’ve let you in twice now and you’ve done the same thing twice now and this is the part where I beat myself up but I can’t. I’m exhausted.
You got what you wanted, but why couldn’t I have been a part of that? Why was I not any part of what you wanted? Why wouldn’t you allow me to fit into your life? What is it about me that does not fit into your life? I’m adaptable as hell. You know this.
So ultimately… this is about letting go because you have that total loss of control. So, for me, guilt, jealously, being invalidated…. ugh… they’re all so horrid BUT, with work, and reflection and communication – be that with yourself, your laptop, your therapist or your cat, etc. – over time, you can perhaps move through it, because you have control over those things. But someone else falling out of love with you (in whatever capacity) ? That gets into taking that control back and recognizing it as just needing to let go and that is THE HARDEST THING IN THE WORLD FOR ME 3000% THE HARDEST THING IN THE WORLD FOR ME
I can’t even articulate it eloquently. It’s just so hard for me to get my head around.
Sure, I understand it’s not any different than the other emotions I’ve brought up, right, only in my mind and heart it is and I cannot deal. I’m just not there. Every time it happens I find myself struggling to recognize on a truly conscious level, that like the other emotions I’ve referenced I can control this feeling and change it. But man… that other person just went away and I sure would like to know why so I can Elmer glue myself to the problem and fix it, because it *must* be something I did. I know it was. But what?
What an annoyingly happy sounding song for how much this hurts. But the melody runs through my mind as I think of you.
I’ve lost you and I don’t know how I lost you.
I wish you’d tell me, but you won’t.
You only reach out to me when you’re in peril, so just know I’m still here for you if you’re dying… I’ll still reach out my hand for you to take. I’ll provide an ear. I’ll still provide shelter.
But I’m not letting you back in… really in… again.
I just don’t understand.