Whether it’s heartbreak, death of a pet, or loss of a close friend due to conflict, the question that unnerves me the most is “but you’re over it, right?”. I’m really curious about this fascination of being “over it”. Why are we so obsessed with not feeling emotion? It’s ok to admit that you’ve been hurt, even if significant time has passed. To be hurt, it means you opened yourself up. You took a chance. You played the game. And you lost. But if you had not played at all, you would have never learned that you’re capable of loving.
I know I’m not the only one who has distinct memories of the day my childhood dog passed away. It cut me so deeply. Sometimes I wake up and I still feel like it happened yesterday. But it didn’t.
I no longer wake up wondering when I’ll be over it. I no longer wake up shaming myself because I still remember things or had a crazy dream involving people I haven’t spoken to in ages or pets that are long gone. I’m no longer angry with myself because sometimes it still hurts. Some days, I’m happy and I feel fine. You could say that those are the days when I’m “over it”. Other days, I smell something in the air or see something familiar and I’m right back where I was years ago.
Instead of forcing myself to try to feel the way people tell me I should, I’m embracing my emotions. I’m unapologetically feeling the way I feel. It’s that simple. Only, it isn’t.
It’s never simple to go against the grain. If it were, we wouldn’t call it that. But that doesn’t mean you should change because it’s difficult to deal with. You will find freedom in feeling. You will find freedom in accepting. You will find freedom in realizing that you’re emotions are fluid.
So next time you find yourself asking Siri or Alexa, “how long until I’m over this?” or hear yourself telling a friend “it takes twice as long as you were with him to get over him”. pause. Pause and take it day by day. And one day, maybe you’ll wake up and realize it wasn’t as bad as the last.
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