“Loneliness renders us vulnerable to our hunger for emotional and spiritual fulfillment, thus exposing is to all relationship needs. Loneliness is gratified only in intimacy.” – Chip Dodd
Loneliness, sadness, fear, guilt.
These have been my emotions for the last few weeks. As the end of the year approaches and the countdown to see my girls intensifies, so do the emotions. Each day becomes longer. Each day becomes lonelier. The weight of my upcoming trip is so great that it is crushing my heart already. How then will my heart handle the emotion, the intimacy and the love when I arrive?
Will I be ready? Will my heart survive? Will it burst with emotion?
The past 6 months have certainly been an emotional roller coaster. At first, I had no idea how to handle them. They were like a freight train: either hop on or run away but definitely don’t try to stop it!
Not that my emotions have been easier to manage or control as of late. The difference lately has been my ability to recognize them and actually embrace them as healthy. If I start randomly crying one day I don’t try and shut it off (unless I’m in front of my students or something). If sadness suddenly engulfs me like a dark cloud I am not scared of it. I am starting to learn that living fully means living emotionally. It’s good to feel emotion. It’s bad to be numb. I was numb a large portion of my life because I shut my heart down. I convinced myself that emotions were bad so feeling them was also bad.
This is not to say that opening our hearts to the floodgates of emotion is easy. For those of us who have not had a healthy emotional life for a long time, it is an incredibly difficult thing to do. For me it is an absolute necessity.
If I can embrace and understand all of the “negative” emotions I feel on a daily basis then the better equipped I will be to handle the best emotion of all: gladness.
Hopefully the gladness I feel upon reuniting with my daughters will not be so overwhelming that I do what I’ve always done: run from the emotion. Hopefully I soak in the emotion like a warm bath on a cold night.
The train called Intimacy is heading straight for me and I willingly choose to let it run me over…