Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Cheer up! Not.

Cheer up.  I have to admit that I find that to be one of the most annoying phrases of the English language.  We say it to someone who is feeling sad, depressed, out sorts.  I think most of us mean well when we say it, but what we're really saying to someone is, "Your feelings are wrong, inappropriate, unfounded."  The implication is, you shouldn't be sad, you have no reason to be down in the dumps.  Cheer up!

Sometimes, it's okay to feel down. Sadness is a healthy emotion, too, and if you're feeling it, that's okay. We are too quick to rush past emotions we don't like. We are too quick to tell others how to feel, to tell ourselves how to feel. 

We have been given the full spectrum of emotion for a reason.  We are fearfully and wonderfully made and we can't come close to understanding the wonder that is the human psyche. You are fine just as you are and how you are don't need to change...ride it out and let it be. Tomorrow is another day (quoting Ms. O'Hara).

I've been a down day. Lots of anxiety and sadness. After almost 40 years of this struggle, I've given up trying to explain it or change. 

I walk through these days reminding myself that I am worthy, that I am loved and lovable, that the world is still the beautiful and wonderful place I have always known it to be. And I hold to my faith that feelings are fleeting and fickle things that can and will change, that life is basically good, and that I am strong enough to walk through a little darkness now and then and come out the other side feeling stronger. 

The Book of Ecclesiastes in one I often go to when life feels chaotic.  It gives me perspective.  Today I am drawn to chapter 3:  To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:  A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance.

It's okay to be sad.  Let's give each other permission NOT to cheer up!  Be kind to yourself and it will all work for good in the end!  For a season, we can weep.  And tomorrow, we will dance.

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