We are the ones whose hearts beat on the outside. The quiet ones who don’t like conflict because it hurts too much. We already feel enough pain.
We are the ones who apologize to every animal we see dead on the side of the road. We feel pain that was never intended for us, but affects us anyway.
We feel like a raw nerve most days. Like every thing we read or see is ladened with a sadness we can hardly bear. And yet, we must.
And this is just who we are on a good day. Who we are often leads to depression and anxiety because we have no idea how to manage ourselves.
We long to shut out the world, if only for a moment, because we feel that we might implode if we see one more homeless person, one more abused animal, one more child in need.
And we help. And we care for. We go out of our way to give…for others, more often than not forgetting ourselves in the process.
So today as I was faced with a BP reading of 161/101, I was reminded of all of this. I let myself run out of my blood pressure medicine. I’ve been so busy worrying about other things in my life, other people in my life that I placed myself in the back of the line.
I talked with my mother tonight about these things – these emotions that are too heavy to carry around day after day, pretending that I’m ok. Why can’t I just forget things, or turn my head and look the other way? Why is it that every sad story finds a home in my head?
Tonight my mother answered that question. She told me that she believes I am meant to be this way. I am meant to be this way because the hurt I feel, leads me to act. I am meant to keep that ache within me as a constant reminder that I am here to help whenever and however I can. And I will. I always will.
However, I am trying very hard to practice the art of self-preservation by being selective about what I read, what shows I watch and who I spend time with. I know I’m not very good at this. But I also know that if I don’t get a handle on it then I won’t be able to help those who need it. As cliche as it is, I’ve got to help myself first so that I’ll be able to help the others who need it.
Methinks I’ve got a lot of work to do.