It is what it is, and it's not up for debate
You feel it rise up and bubble to the surface.
Searing and true.
A feeling that almost escapes through pursed lips.
You catch it. You crush it down.
It returns. It rises up.
You smash it down.
It rises up, you bat it away. Not now.
Afraid of what could materialise if you let something slip out.
After a lifetime of holding everything in, composed and curated, not even you would recognise you if it all came out.
No. It’s better to smoosh it down. Hold it in. Let the storm of emotions rage inside you, while you “protect” everyone else; self-appointed defender of other people’s feelings, that you've made yourself.
“Yeah, I’m fine” you rep-lie.
And you do it all again the next day.
While it’s fair to question what is real and true, what I find myself doing is policing even the true ones. Why do I feel angry? Should I feel anger? Am I right to feel this way? Where’s the evidence for this? Why don’t I feel like that?
I was in the car driving to work, which is fast becoming a prominent place of thought, and the word 'validation' popped into my mind.
It’s cause and effect. And for a lot of women, we’ve become accustomed to being reactionary to someone else’s emotional lead, only ever allowing ourselves to play the effect part of that chain. So how on Earth could it be possible, that I could trust my feelings about something, first and without consultation?
This is is the kind of stuff that keeps us in places that don’t bring us joy, fulfilment and satisfaction, for longer than we should be. We prod and poke our feelings. And while there is some sense in doing that to test what stands and what's momentary, even after separating the wheat from the chaff in the fields of our feelings, we still ritually choose to put them through filter after filter, until we can’t even make out what the original thought was. It feeling so vague and unaffecting, we can’t even convince ourselves of its merit, so we think it better to say nothing. Again.
You are allowed to be happy without reason.
Angry without question.
Despair without worrying about being admonished.
All without a single other soul to sign off on your feelings.
It is what it is, and it’s not up for debate, judgement or qualification.
Our feelings need to be. In the moment. That’s literally what the human condition asks of us. To be human beings. Not human interrogators.
Anger is one of those feelings that kind of sneaks up on me, most recently in my journal. I was writing away, and all of a sudden I noticed I was in flow. But that flow was ignited by rage. Those journal pages tell me that I am pretty bloody incensed right now.
I can figure out the why later, but it is what it is, and those feelings are not up for debate.
Have a great week. Let's feel our feelings. In the moment, okay? They don't have to be fully fleshed out, meet a quality control checklist before being let out into the World, or neatly tied up ready for presentation. They just have to be allowed to be, a bit more often.