am I allowed to feel discouraged?

I’m not asking for a friend. I’m asking for me. I know a number of people will read this and wonder if I’m okay. I am. I am okay. And I also feel discouraged. I also know that I’m not really supposed to say this. I’m “allowed”…but not really. Love and light! Good vibes only. The universe/God only gives you what you can handle. Everything happens for a reason. Be happy. Be the light. Let it go. I’ll pray for you. Just keep trying. Never give up. 

I won’t go into details, but the last two months have been challenging. Not devastating. Not depressing. It’s just been a time where I have tried things and they didn’t work…over and over again. Where I haven’t loved some of the things I’ve tried, but others have advised I do them. Where I think I’ve got it, but I don’t. Where my heart feels heavy with the goings on of the world. Where things just seem hard and kind of exhausting. Where I feel a bit stuck. 

Maybe it’s my own hang ups about my more “uncomfortable” emotions. Maybe I’m not quite as evolved as I think I am. That’s likely a piece of it, though our culture has become increasingly intolerant of what we label as “negative” emotions. The memes on Facebook and Instragram regularly tell me it’s only really okay to feel or say “positive” things. There is “Bell Talks” and mental health awareness. That is important. Once that day/week is done, however, everyone stops talking about it.  

I once shared a struggle, a really big, expensive, struggle, with an acquaintance/friend and her response was “The universe only gives you what you can handle”. It did not help me. It shut me down. I wonder if these sayings and memes are our way of saying, “I don’t know what to say. I don’t know how to help. I’m uncomfortable with your emotions.”

A friend posted something political on Facebook and a woman actually said, “Talking politics is low vibe”. 

When I was a little louder about my low waste lifestyle, someone asked, “Can’t you just live it and be quiet about it?” So I did. I just live it and only sometimes talk about it, mostly if I’m asked to.

I could go on. I’m sure you have your list too. 

So, though I have my own hang ups about “uncomfortable” emotions, I’m not too far off in assuming that people don’t want to know that I’m discouraged. 

I’ve been reluctant to tell people, but I’ve shared a little bit of my struggle here and there. Loving people want to advise and fix or pray. Honestly, I just don’t need solutions right now, especially ones that aren’t my own. I know “this too shall pass”, but I’m in the thick of it right now, in this moment. What I need is someone to just hear me. 

And this has got me wondering, if I feel I can’t really tell people that I am discouraged, what about people who are depressed, struggling with anxiety, in the midst of grief, confusion, heartache, and so on. We all know we’re allowed to talk about it, but only so much and only for so long. And sometimes it’s just easier to stay quiet in our struggles than it is to listen to someone try to fix it or fix us or to hear them recite their feel good phrase. 

We’ve become so afraid of the toxic, negative person that we have left no room for the struggling person. 

I can only tell you what I need, what would “help” me. Let’s just listen to each other more and stop declaring that only positivity is welcome, even in subtle forms of picturesque memes and prayers. Let’s become comfortable with all emotions. You don’t have to become discouraged to hear that I am. Just hear that I am. 

And here is my door. It is open for the struggling. I am willing to listen. There will be no feel good phrase. My hands and heart are open. I will hear your heartache and not judge or advise. I will see you until you can see yourself.

This isn’t what I planned to write today, but it is what came out. 

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