Feelings

I’m not a cold-hearted stoic after all!

For a while there, I was getting nervous. Do I even have a heart?! Why am I NOT sad? Not even a teeny bit?

I got to the point in my lack of sentimentality that something was wrong with me, and it needed to be addressed. I started to wonder if I ought to force myself to feel something and dig deep down to splash ice cold water on my emotionless heart. Either that or characterize myself as a terrible person who didn’t actually love anyone.

But thank goodness I don’t have to conclude on either of those options, because real tears have spilled out of my eyeballs. I’m in the clear now. I ain’t no Grinch.

It strikes me as odd to be a person who finds relief in crying. Who waits around for the tears to come? I was literally waiting for sadness. Who does that?! Maybe I’m simply one of those strange introspective people who is a little too attuned to her inward happenings… Or maybe I’m too much of a people pleaser that I determined I ought to be sad because everyone else was.

Well, I don’t need to go on and on about this, because little Miss Sadness has definitely made her appearance more than once. And I already feel her lingering around, pouncing at any random moment for absolutely no good darn reason.

The first moment of deep, moving tenderness happened last night at our last Care Group. While walking to my best friend’s house, I could see her daughters smearing their giddy cheeks all over the storm door, expectantly watching out for “someone.” It dawned on me for a split second that maybe our dear friends were going to do something to honor our last night. When I walked in, I couldn’t handle it. I broke.

A Care Group Christmas party. In June. For us.

Everyone yelled, “Merry Christmas!” in their geeky, holiday apparel with twinkly lights and Christmas trees backdropping their jolly surprise. Christmas cookies, holiday music, and even a white-elephant gift exchange accompanied our surprise goodbye party.

Some of my readers may be terribly confused by this, and yes, you should be. The short version: It’s an inside joke. The longer version: Bobby absolutely loves Christmas, and we have obsessed over our Care Group Christmas parties for years, even to the extent of doing them in October.

I realized at that moment how dear my church family had become to us, and how absolutely blessed we feel to have people in our lives who know us as well as these. And leave it to Christmas to bring in some strong nostalgic sobs. Go figure. 

Then today I had a one-on-one lunch with my dad. That alone is a tear-jerker. However, while talking in the Jason’s Deli line, one moment I was telling my Dad I wanted the salad bar and the next I casually said, “Yeah, yesterday was our last Care Group, and today was the last swim lesson.” Bam. It struck. For some random reason, saying the word “last” in those small-talk sentences triggered my eyelids to start welling up. I had said “last” one million times prior and had not a single emotional response.

Oh, no. Here goes. 

Since I had been waiting and wondering when sadness would happen to me, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do when it finally showed up. Should I just let it go, and blubber it all out? That was indeed what I was waiting for, wasn’t it? Or do I suppress it, compose myself, and try to keep my non-waterproof mascara in tact? Well, I hadn’t thought that answer out, so I spent most of my emotional fits halfsie doing both. To be fair, public crying is different from closed-door crying. If you want to have any decent conversation, ya gotta hold it back a little, or else it becomes a wet, sloppy cry-fest with no good quality time at all.

My new-found sadness also has an unexpectant partner. When I think about moving in five days, I feel nervous. That emotion totally came out of the blue. I was not waiting for that one. I find it peculiar because I’m really not nervous at all. Yet I have a pit-at-the-bottom-of-my stomach feeling. Why!? It surprises me. I’m not anxious or cognitively worried about a single thing. In my mind and in my thoughts, I’m beyond excited and ready to get in our minivan and roll away. But still, when I meditate on the upcoming event, my stomach grows heavy and drops. Weird. Just weird! I have never had an emotion without thoughts to explain it. It’s kinda creepy.

Well, there, world, I’m sad! (Plus, apparently nervous?)

(Okay, to be honest, I don’t think the world cared very much. I think I cared.) So….

There, Sarah, you’re sad! Happy now? 

Ha.

Maybe I feel like I proved something to myself. Or maybe I am happy that I feel something rather than nothing. Cuz for a while there, I was a dry, stale, disengaged statue. At least that’s how I felt. Feeling like a feelingless rock is not a great feeling. 

So maybe I really am happy that I’m sad! Because feelings feel good, even when they really do feel bad. Am I making any sense here?! Probably not. I’m clearly emotionally unstable now and am having irrational mood swings. But at least I have emotions! I don’t really care how swingy they are swinging, at least they are there. It’s good to be back in action with some real feels, even if I can’t explain them all. 

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