It’s not all sadness…

*disclaimer – mildly feverish, sick, and a little bit of a ramble as I’m fading quickly* 

I never realized how much sadness I carried in me until I started writing more and sharing it with others. There seems to be a common response to my words – there’s so much sadness… and I think historically I would have felt self-conscious about it… I would have wanted to minimize it or somehow sanitize it enough that there wasn’t any real vulnerability in my words… which is why so few landed on the page. Now, I have no problem acknowledging that I carry sadness… I will tell people when I’m sad or hurt or disappointed… or pissed, agitated, moody, bitchy, etc… I have learned how powerful it is to allow those emotions to surface, to acknowledge them, and in doing so, I often return to happiness, gratitude, excitement, etc so much quicker.

I am sad – I have struggled to understand why the universe has such a twisted sense of humor, but sadness isn’t what defines me or even a dominant feeling I experience frequently. At least not that I’m aware of… there’s a depth to my sadness because for so long, when I went through so much painful shit – too much painful shit to experience, I shut myself down and I think now the sadness has just become a piece of me … and I think I’m more open about when I’m experiencing the things that disappointment me or hurt me… but man, do I also feel an enormous amount of gratitude – I am so grateful, genuinely so, for the life I have. An amazing family, an awesome kid, a best friend that I have known for 30 years – yes 30 years with having the same best friend, I know what I want to do with my life, I know what I need to do to balance things out, I feel like I have a better sense of who I am, am more accepting of all my flaws and quirks, I truly get to go on adventures regularly  – whether in my neighborhood with my kiddo or dogs, or out the mountains…

It’s almost silly thinking about the amount of gratitude I have – and I think it’s the gratitude that really helps me persevere, to trust that it’s ok to feel broken-hearted… even knowing it’s the 7th grade version of broken-hearted that I experience when a short love affair ends too quickly. I too easily remember the devastating pain of my marriage, my family, my life and ideas of future and ever-after falling apart on the turn of a dime… I lost my best friend, my dogs, my home, my person…. that was devastating, and I haven’t met someone yet who really is a match for that kind of love that I was lucky enough to experience (I’d even say I’m lucky enough to claim two such loves…). I do get hurt easily, and when I do, the hurt taps into a well of sadness that is within me always, and now I take that hurt and let it fuel my creativity, let the words stream out onto the page… it’s one of my favorite ways to keep moving forward. I find music that fits my mood, I listen to a few songs on repeat, and I get lost typing.

I’m not sure if I will ever be able to capture the gratitude and excitement that I also feel because I’ve always used writing to process sadness, but I will try. And I do hope that I am able to focus not just on poeticizing the shitty sides of dating in the 21st century, as a divorced practically 37 year old with wicked sleep issues, but also the technical sides of writing-  whether it be in practicing different poem structures, in writing short stories, or in finally writing any one of the 12 books or so that live in me… I’d even settle for completing a random collection of pieces of all those… so here’s to being vulnerable – as much as I curse it sometimes, I do love it and will never turn away from it again (I hope so at least).

*this one is for someone in particular, but I’m not sure I would or can follow anymore… good luck on your journey (sincerely)*

©2017 Erin Hoffman – all rights reserved

 

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