In my counseling class at seminary, we’ve been talking about family dynamics. It’s been a tough discussion, what with all of the talk about abuse, narcissistic families, borderline personality disorder and digging into one’s own story.
It’s especially tough when some of what the class dredges up is your own story, your own anxiety, your own muck.
I see a counselor regularly. I had a two hour session today. It was one of the hardest two hours I’ve ever experienced. What I didn’t exactly anticipate was my utter exhaustion after the session.
Emotions are something which mystify me even now. Growing up, they were volatile. Unsafe. Undesirable. There were even repercussions for expressing them and no modeling of how to express them appropriately. As a result, I’ve had to learn a lot of this stuff of my own accord. Even then, I’ve not understood their power and exactly how much energy they take.
Sometimes I wish I could turn them off. Most of the time, they make me feel alive. But they do hurt a lot. And they definitely sap my energy. I think that’s one reason I was so productive in high school and most of college…I ignored my emotions and had a ton of energy.
Too bad real life doesn’t work that way.
It really felt like my energy levels were decreasing as I sat in my counselor’s office. He has a stash of candy and I was working my way through the pile of it, hoping the sugar would take my mind off of how drained I was feeling. I’d share something difficult and pop another mini Twix into my mouth. Pretty sure I ate almost all the Twix in the office.
After the session, I had lunch in my car while listening to a local NPR program. Then I had an appointment with the chiropractor. Afterwards, I drove home and went to bed. I slept for nearly 3 hours before driving to church where I had dinner, conducted the children’s choir, and then came home.
My brain is tired. I can barely think. I was going to work on a school project, but I just can’t. I’m just tired. So much has happened and is happening that I feel like I’m reduced to walking even though others around me jog by at a brisk pace.
Will I get used to having emotions?
I really hope so.
Tyler A. said:
“Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan ‘Press On’ has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.”
Drama can be taxing. It is why I stepped out of the SSA/gay sub-culture. I don’t want to live in denial but I also don’t want my life to revolve around any singular issue. If you become preoccupied with the drama, it will zap the life out of you. And the people who are habitually moaning and groaning about their SSA issues can be a bore and an emotional drain. So, you have issues X,Y, and Z in your life. Acknowledge that they exist, change the things you can, accept the things you can’t and then move on. Drink coffee in the morning, wine at night and pray all day.
Yeah…I think that’s really good advice. I think some of my problem is that, but more of it seems to be related to not really knowing what to DO with emotions to begin with. I do like the wine at night thing, though. I spent some time with a good friend doing just that tonight. 🙂