Outpourings of a mad (wo)man

IMG_7590I very rarely open up about myself outside of the protection of my nearest and dearest, but sometimes outpouring is cathartic and I need that right now.

It has become glaringly obvious that you can’t miss what you’ve never had and you can’t empathise with something you’ve never experienced. My disability is a gift OR a curse depending on which day you ask me about it – IF you ever ask me about it because, really, who does that? If I had a birth defect or a false limb, would that make it easier for you because it is physical, a constant, something unrelatable, but more black and white for you than the inside of someone’s mind? Could you empathise more?

Empathy – what a word! Something I no longer ask for and something I’m quite unsure of the meaning of anymore. How stupid for me to have screamed for it in the dark box that I sometimes stand in…..alone. Noone hears and, if they do, they can’t help. They can’t empathise, even if they want to.

On days like today I’m a rambling whirlwind of emotion with no start or end point. I’m like a kite whose string has been released. I’ll play the part I’m supposed to, of course. I’m brilliant at this – career woman, daughter, girlfriend, sister, friend, scapegoat…..Society asks me to be all of these things, but demands that I definitely DON’T act like the lunatic that I genuinely feel on the inside. Obviously I know I’m not a lunatic and that’s just a turn of phrase I’m using for today.

I’m many things – some of them wonderful, others not so. Today I’m complicated, cutting and catastrophising over everything. I’m an unwelcome house guest at a party of my own hosting. I’m alone, but that isn’t scary anymore. I’ve become accustomed to myself and sometimes being alone is easier than trying to explain myself and inevitably going round in circles with no clarity for the unlucky listener. I have my good days and my bad (the latter being more frequent at the moment due to large life changes – see….I get it!)

The one thing I’m sure of today, if nothing else, is that this vessel I call my body will weather this storm like the battleship it has fought so hard to be and I will have my victory again.

Happiness is…..

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There’s an advert on television at the moment where the narrator asks what it means to be happy. It is a very interesting question and one that has no right or wrong answer. Happiness means so many different things to different people. There are those for whom it means a fleeting moment of intense joy, others who are happiest when they are with people they love and then there are those who are unsure if they have ever been truly happy. These are the more interesting answers that people can provide.

I think it is fascinating to understand the human mind. It is something I know very little about and struggle to understand on a regular basis. How can we all be considered human beings when we all feel such different emotions and struggle to understand the emotions of others?

If you think about it, when was the last time you felt truly happy? That’s probably the toughest question you’ll be asked today as it has no singular answer. There is no formula to work out or tangible evidence to suggest that at this moment, on this date, you felt happiness. It is merely how your memory lets you believe this was what happened. For me, the last time I was happy (as an adult) was when the following things happened:

  • I was sat at the Basilica, in the sunshine, whilst living in Lyon and I remember thinking “this is my life. I can do anything with it” and I felt blissfully happy
  • I walked out of various loveless relationships
  • I snuggled my puppy on the sofa while she fell asleep
  • I stroked my cat, concentrating on his contented purrs until I felt at peace

These are all such different experiences of happiness and yet they all felt as powerful as each other, at that moment. I think, in all honesty, happiness is what you make of it and nothing else. There’s no mystery to it. It isn’t a tangle of emotions waiting to be untangled by knowing fingers. It is yours, alone, even if you experience it with someone else. Neither of you will feel exactly the same thing within that moment. For those of you who think they have never or will never again feel happiness, know this. Happiness is like beauty – it is in the eyes of the beholder. Sometimes you may look back on your life and realise how much happier you were once compared to now. We probably all need to stop worrying about being happy and just BE. When I’m miserable I know I’m the only one who can change that. Stop concentrating on what you don’t feel and concentrate on what you DO feel. Then you can make better decisions on what you need to change about yourself or your life to be the person you want to be. Knowing yourself can be happiness enough.

Light and love, people. Mimi Cat xox