I have never seen Platoon, Or Schindler's List, or read The Notebook. I just can't. I know how they end. That sadness brings back memories of things I don't want to remember. So I avoid sadness. So much so, that I purposely joke and say funny things to make other people laugh. Because laughing feels better than crying. But I can't pretend it doesn't bother me. Those kinds of things can be toxic. And they start to breed negative thoughts in my head. To quote a friend I can't quote out loud, "don't go upstairs in the attic alone."
It's not good to be alone in my head for too long. I start to tell myself lies. Like how I am a failure at everything. And how nothing I do is good enough. And how I am failing as a mother. It really sucks up there in the attic. It's dark. And it smells funny. Like old people.
Part of what I get from writing here is the process of getting those thoughts out of my head so the attic isn't so cluttered any more. And your comments and encouragement each and every time are so very helpful. They give me strength and they remind me I'm not alone in the attic.
You know who some of the most amazing friends I've met are?
They are nurses, authors, fathers, educators, crafty diy ladies, artists, organizers, iPhone app inventors, sports writers, scientists, film and broadcast personalities, college students, social media executives, East Coast snobs and West Coast biotches. I could go on and on.
Some are even BLOGGERS.
Whether or not you are ready to face your elephants, whether you are a blogger or a reader or both. I know you. Because I am you. And we're a lot more alike than some of us are able to share because we're not all anonymous. It isn't safe. We can't unfriend or block people in real life when they are not supportive. We can't un-share once something is out in the open.
I've always suffered from over-sharing, myself. I open my mouth, and shit just flies right out. Every time. So I get that not everyone can or even wants to share. I suppose that's why I keep mostly anonymous here. I understand if you can't share or aren't ready. Maybe you have nothing to share.
Maybe you had a very happy, healthy upbringing and there's nothing much to share. Maybe you don't suffer from anxiety or depression. Maybe your child doesn't have a disability. Maybe you haven't suffered the loss of a child. Maybe you don't even have children yet. You might be married. Or divorced. Or maybe you are gay or bi. Maybe you have things you're still hiding from yourself about how much more important it is to appear perfect to others. Maybe you don't have insecurities about your weight, or the way you look, or your age. Maybe your career is going perfectly and you're set for life. Maybe your family doesn't have issues. Maybe it's just not safe for you. That's ok too.
Some of us hide behind our handle, or a phony facebook profile like I do. Or we hide behind a blog where we share our DIY Pottery Barn painted furniture tutorial. Or we hide behind a laugh and a smile. Or behind the perfect Pinterest board. Or our clever 142 character one-liners on Twitter. Or we hide behind our desk at work. Or behind our children. Yes. I've done this too. It's o.k. to hide. But be sure to stay out of the attic unless you bring a friend with. It's not safe to stay there alone either.
I want to give you all a deeply heart-felt thank you. I feel like my blogs have been too whiny and depressing lately. But it's what I'm working through right now. You have no idea how much I have struggled with facing my issues before we met, even though I may joke about them tongue-in cheek at times.
I am talking to every one of you who came, read, shared with me privately, or in comments, on social media, chat, or in real life (all 3 of you). You supported me. Like a good friend should. You have helped me so I could help others. Isn't that why we share?
Just consider this our little meeting place.
Like A.A. for real life.
Please contact me if you would like to share a guest post anonymously or in person.
Our elephants can be friends!