25 October 2011

"Crash into me" - Your Oversized, Depressed Beanbag Chair.

There are some days that if feels so good to give in.  Give in to sadness, give in to the feeling of being overwhelmed, that sense of enormity beyond control.  Rather than fight it, I just sink into it, like a familiar, albeit sad, friend.  Like an over-sized empathetic hug.  I have rituals for days like these; playlists that are played somewhat compulsively, drinks that are sipped nostalgically, feelings that escape finally.

It's in these last motions though, that I also sense release.  Some days.  There are certainly days when sadness breeds sadness; tears only detail more tears.  But, days like today, the rituals - including the ritual sadness - moves me to a place beyond habitual depression.  I am moved to something that resembles introspection.  In fact, a very good debate could convince me entirely that these days are reasonable and necessary. The problem is that I feel as though I'm giving in to something.  Is it a problem, though, if I feel better by the end of the day?  Is it a problem if it takes a few days to get out of?  These are answers I don't have.

The other problem lies in the idea that I seek discomfort for myself.  Am I more comfortable with being miserable than I am happy?  Honestly, when I'm happy, I feel like I'm either overlooking something or am unreasonably elated, both of which lead me to not only feel guilty for feeling happy, but also to seek ways, I think, in which to destroy those feelings.  I listen to sad songs, love and loss and loss and…loss, and I still identify with them, even though I am lucky enough to have found and married the most compassionate, devoted, understanding partner a person could have.  And, I'm even in love with him, too, so there's not any disagreement on my end - he's a gem.  We're in love.  I'm happy - truly happy in our relationship.  Outside of that, in my own-ness, I think I just identify more with misery and sadness than I do with happiness.  Which is miserable, in and of itself, to admit.  On the bright side, then, this admission should suit me just fine.

But it doesn't.  It just makes me wonder if I'm capable of seeking meaningful happiness and adhering to it.  I've had the argument with Tim that romantic sentiment should be spontaneous and if we talk about it - as in, "I wish you would be more spontaneous" - it is the end of the very thing I'm asking for.  Telling someone to plan spontaneity is absurd.  So there's this dance around a subject that is vitally important to me, and yet, I have to pretend I am not thinking about it and actually strive not to dwell on it.  Only then do Tim's actions come off as spontaneous to me.  My happiness seems to be the same kind of waltz with myself - I pretend that I don't notice I enjoy misery more and simultaneously try not to focus on happiness so that when, and if, it does happen, it feels organic; it lasts.  Except, it doesn't ever last.  And giving in feels so damn good.

If anything, my yoga practice has mellowed this ridiculous limbo.  I don't feel as low now as I can remember feeling in the past.  I can remember nights when my roommate would come home to me sitting in the dark, listening to Damien Rice poetically cursing along to his songs in various minor keys.  I feel a visceral depression from that moment.  The same sense-memory as when I remember driving through the town in which I grew up, for hours on end, letting all the emotion in my head sink down into my chest and then rise again, up through my tears.  I can feel this.  And, yet, this sadness doesn't feel as bad as that sadness, right now.  Is that progress?  How depressing.  And, not in an enjoyable way, at all.

What terrifies me is my lack of understanding and - without shock - lack of control of this situation.  In the aforementioned situations, those darkest moments seemed to permeate my life like some sort of emotional cancer, reaching their knubby little fingers out into all aspects of my life until they had seized all my potential; grasping every single facet of my life, wringing them out until I was just a puddle on the floor, completely ruined.  This is what terrifies me.  What if I'm feeling the first pre-shocks of my big emotional earthquake - can I prevent it?  I can feel it seeping in; but maybe that's just emotion, not emotional ruin.  Or, I'll be piecing myself back out of the ruins in a few months' time.  This, again, is not something I can take solace in.

For now, though, I can take solace in empathetic renderings of emotion set to music.  Yep.  Crying along to love songs.  Bring it on John Mayer.  Let me have it Adele.  What do you even know, Norah Jones?  Ok, so my love songs are all adult contemporary - Contemporary Adults, it would seem, have a lot of repressed emotion.  I am happy to sing along to their anthems, weep my sobs, and see if I can't just sympathize my way out of this situation.  (When does that not help, by the way?)

Let the tears fall.

Mumford & Sons "Timshel"

Cold is the water
It freezes your already cold mind
Already cold, cold mind
And death is at your doorstep
And it will steal your innocence
But it will not steal your substance

But you are not alone in this
And you are not alone in this
As brothers we will stand and we'll hold your hand
Hold your hand

And you are the mother
The mother of your baby child
The one to whom you gave life
And you have your choices
And these are what make man great
His ladder to the stars

But you are not alone in this
And you are not alone in this
As brothers we will stand and we'll hold your hand
Hold your hand

And I will tell the night
Whisper, "Lose your sight"
But I can't move the mountains for you


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