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It creeps up on you slowly, small drips of sadness that quickly dissipate before you are forced to address them. Then the feeling is more prominent, a muddy puddle that is larger and deeper than you first thought. The irritation at these interruptions becomes a consciousness that says, “Here it comes, you know what this leads to. Time to look carefully at what is welling up and if necessary, let it wash over you.”

I always set a time limit. I tell myself this is normal, life happening as it should, and the facing of it head-on will allow me to see there is another side, a place where the puddles dry and the drip stops. An emotional pattern is like a weather pattern. If I stop and acknowledge it, I can forecast the joy that balances it out. Little things bring it on; a trip to the salon that takes me past my old home. Memories swell on the first  passing. “Did I make a mistake along the way? Wasn’t that life OK?”

I pick up a high-end fashion magazine at the salon; it reminds me, in the life it depicts, of a fate that will never be mine, though once or twice I’ve been very close. On the way home, I cannot turn my head to look at the house, it has become too raw.

Finally, force-feeding myself a chicken pot pie before the nightly TV news, I break down. They end the broadcast with a story of a woman who donated her child’s heart and met the recipient. And you know what? I let myself cry. I sit back and let go for a few minutes to wash the ground clean. It is calming.

Am I on the other side yet? Probably by the time this is public, I will be riding a new high – the possibilities for happiness are endless right now. Just like the weather forecast, if you are patient and watch, the sun comes out, Spring arrives, the puddles nourish the earth and gardens appear.

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But at the moment, like every other human at various points in life, I have a water hazard to address. Thanks for listening…

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16 comments on “Into the deep…

  1. Touring NH says:

    I am also in the depths of it. Unfortunately right now, I am feeling a lake instead of a puddle. I was truly hoping my visit to FL would bounce me out of it, but it only made coming home worse. Trying to keep in mind spring is just around the corner.

    1. Back to the butterfly place for you my friend! Find your happy spot and go there as often as necessary. I’m here if you need me, but we know that…

  2. Doppleganger says:

    While I know you hate to cry because I do too, I am glad you did. When “it” gets to that point for a strong person like yourself, “it” has moved in and shoved out giddy. Being stoic women, we continue to fight “it”, which of course is just what “it” wants, as that allows “it” to grow and take over. I have learned in my old age that the only way to expel “it” is not necessarily to look it in they eye and challenge it, but when the heat and tears feel like they are going to well up over some silly commercial, (highly Uncharacteristic of me), “there’s my sign”. Take advantage and let go, like you did…that really does wash “it” away and makes room for the giddy again… Just remember sadness can’t swim!

    1. Wiser words than I could speak, Dop. I love you because you know me all too well! I am learning to look “it” in the eye but without judgement or fight. Nothing like a good wash when your skin is itchy – said every horse I ever owned.

  3. alinekaplan says:

    I’m so sorry things are not going well and you are feeling sad. Here’s a thought: sit down and recited the Master Intention: “May all things be done for the greater good of all — including me –, in service, as an expression of life purpose, drawing closer to Source (or God).” Try to feel it as you say it. The Master Intention won’t change things immediately but it will get them moving in the right direction.

    1. Perfect magic, Aline. I read this before I headed down the road to my hospice friend. We had a lovely day and it reminded me to breathe and narrow my focus…Thank you.

  4. Always riding the wave, aren’t we? I wish, on those off-days, I could just yell out ‘whooohooo’ and acknowledge the ride for what it is. Hope your view gets a rise soon.

    1. Thanks Susan. Already seeing the sun!

  5. Better to face it than try to ignore it, I think. Tomorrow could turn out to be the best day ever!

    1. Or today could! thanks…

  6. julieallyn says:

    Oh, Martha. This tugged at my heartstrings. Are you OK?!?!

    You very concisely and precisely describe the ‘welling up’ of emotion that I, too, know so well. Hugs for you. I don’t know what else to say. I will be thinking of you and sending happy, empowering thoughts your way…

    1. Thank you Julie. I am fine. I felt that perhaps by writing about it I could not only help myself but also let others know that it is OK to admit to feeling less than “Susie Sunshine” all the time. Thanks for your kind thoughts and support!

  7. cheryl622014 says:

    It has to be done and I am thankful for my friends who understand. Also that I understand it has to be done and is ok. Just put on my last three scribbles before my annual Lenten break, but look forward to reading your therapeutic misadventures. I think I can say hugs and best wishes now? (We English!) 🙂

  8. Water is necessary for growth of any kind.

    1. Well said, Phil. Thank you.

  9. Marie Keates says:

    Sometimes tears are all there is. I am very good at crying. When I’m happy, when I’m angry, when I’m just emotional or when I’m down. Perhaps it’s the blue eyes, too much water there. When it’s sadness crying it does seem to help in an odd way, although the puffy eyes are not good. I’m sorry you had a down day. Hopefully the sun has come out now to make you smile.

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