Big girls do cry.
"It's just emotion taken me over
Caught up in sorrow,
lost in my soul..."
Okay so what now? How do we regulate our emotions, or if we can't do that how do we regulate our responses to our emotions so we're not moving mad every other day of the week?
I guess this is something I am constantly asking myself, my clients and everyone around me. Because things will happen. Things will hurt. Things will take the absolute piss but then what? An old therapist once said to me that one of the worst things about life is that a traumatic event may pass but we allow the pain to stay. I think about that often. Sometimes revisiting a memory or trauma may have good intentions in the beginning. Wanting to remember "the good times" or "the early days when things were less complicated" but the truth is the sweetness can only stay for so long before it turns bitter. Reality has a backhand like no other and when that thing slaps you, it isn't a joke.
I think I am in a place where I am happy to admit I am infallible. I am a perfectionist at heart and I want everything to be absolutely the best all the time - that in itself a recipe for disaster. So I'm trying to be okay with the crooked edges, the spelling mistakes, the creased clothes - the parts of life that I cannot reverse despite how small they may appear to others. This isn't to minimise how I feel but to maximise my opportunity to heal in a healthy way.
It's funny because becoming a both a therapist and a mother in the same year has made me realise how much I need to look after myself. It is incredibly demanding to show up for people constantly but somewhat impossible when I am not showing up for myself. So I am trying to do better. Now obviously, maternity pay is a couple pennies and if my money was longer (and Boris and his mates could make up their damn minds) I would be somewhere by an infinity pool with my son in close eye view playing with his toys. But I am sit on my bed thinking about how I can create that break without the need to escape the country.
"Feel the feelings but do not let them consume you".
I am, and I hate but kinda love to admit it, becoming a crier. And it is probably one of the best things that's happened for me. I find it easy to cry at a sad movie or in happiness for someone else but crying when it comes to myself takes a level of acceptance of my own struggle that I am not always willing to bear. To admit that I am in need of a hug, or just someone to tell me I am doing a job has felt weak. I am unlearning that. I am disowning the internal voice that has taught me that my vulnerability is something to be ashamed of.
So I guess big girls do cry. And big boys. And big non-binaries. But it doesn't make us any weaker. In fact it means we're allowing ourselves to feel authentically. Now I'm not saying it will be comfortable and it won't always be necessary - but Lord knows the release makes such a difference.
From me to you,