I’ve been cheating…
Okay, that’s not the full story. What I mean is that I’ve been cheating you. Yeah yeah, I know, the title was a bit deceiving. But since you’re already here, might as well read on, no? si. Okay. Go ahead.
So yes, I’ve been cheating you a bit. Let’s explore:
So you know this whole happiness thing that I strive for, write for, think for? Well, it’s not the full story. Or the full picture. I’ve kinda always known this but don’t know if I’ve shared enough about it. I think I wrote a bit about it here (on sadness). But comparing percentages of posts on happy vs posts on sad or other, the weight is obviously slanted. In my head, they aren’t necessarily. Here’s what happened to make me think of this:
My supervisor said something to me as we were discussing clients and approach to therapy. She said that for her, she sits with the emotions, whatever it may be. If a client brings in happy, she stays with that, sits with it in the room, acknowledges it fully. Likewise, if a client comes in with feelings of sadness or anger, she sits with those too, allowing both to be fully immersed in the feeling. The only way to know happy is to know its opposite…or something like that.
In my mind, this has always been true. I’m a big believer in the ying&yang of life. you can only know light if you’ve experienced what darkness is. that sorta thing.
But in that moment (or in my head more appropriately stated) I became defensive. I thought, “seriously lady, you heard about 1 tiny moment during which I did focus on happy bc that’s what she brought in. session before I was empathizing and reflecting like nobody’s business. Even though I can’t verbalize what I’m doing, I know that my being in the room in genuine and my primary goal is to validate and sit and feel where the other person is. sure, I just got finished telling you that I think everyone has strengths and the capability of handling life on their own and yes, I’m a pretty optimistic person which undoubtedly seeps out in the room. But yadda whateverthefuck yadda. I don’t care how you/i/we/they do it as long as it helps.”
…admittedly, I’d had a tough week. This past one in particular was filled with deadlines and lack of sleep and unhealthiness and loneliness and new environments and false people. And, my meeting w said supervisor came at the culmination of that week. Friday. 4pm. End of my day. Hour plus drive waiting ahead of me before I could begin my “weekend” ((which per usual was filled with more deadlines and writing and such)). So I left that meeting feeling uncomfortable.questioned.wrong. I know this wasn’t the intention. Challenge was what it was supposed to be. But, in my sensitive state, I simply felt defeated. attacked. like shit. Through the thought process described above, I think you can see that defensive coming out which, in the end, is not helpful in moving forward. For anyone.
Tying it all together, I missed writing. (at first glance, that statement doesn’t really tie all of it together but stick with me; it’ll happen). I miss exploring. And figuring out. Discovering and uncovering my way out of a shitty feeling or a question or a difficult moment. Because of deadlines and pressures and overwhelm, I didn’t make time for it. That incident with my supervisor did have a positive ending. It reified my passion for helping and for learning, but also for being. That is my primary way of helping. Sitting. Acknowledging. Being. And that is my purpose of these explorations I share with you. I hold no responsibility over making you experience happiness. Nor am I hear to teach or paint the world as rosy and filled with rainbows. Rather, my aim has always been to explore the art of happiness, the complexities that make it an amazing feeling, the intricacies that cause it to be a feeling that requires experiencing the yang. Mostly, I think it’s balanced. But, also mostly, I think I can do more. While i have lots i want to share that deal with overcoming and challenging and happy, there are a few things I’ve been scared to share (like moments of disappointments & swimming against the current), fearful that it will taint your idea of what happy is. of what my happy is. that is a disservice to all of us, myself included…myself perhaps most importantly.