People. What makes a person? What makes man different from mammal? Emotion. Sympathy.
We all have those really bad days. Where all we want to do is crawl under the duvet, put on a very sad album (maybe Joni Mitchell or Nick Cave) and cry. Then more sad songs. More tears. And finally, we induce a worn-out/cried-out sleep. The kind of sleep that lasts for 4-8 hours, and we wake up feeling hot and confused about where we are and what just happened. Then, we remember we cried ourselves to sleep. So we cry again.
And that’s ok. It’s ok to have those days. And it’s ok to just want people to look after you: without having to ask. You want someone to bring you a box of tissues, without having to hang up banners that state “I’m feeling really depressed. Comfort me. I’m begging.”
It’s ok if the longing and the begging for sympathy is internal and unvoiced. It doesn’t mean you want it any less.
You always help out everybody around you. You love your family, friends, partner, and you do everything you can to cheer them up when they feel down, without being asked. Broken leg? Pizza night. Break up? Chocolate and magazines. Operation? Cards and flowers. Bout of depression? Little reminders that you care, post it notes, cards and more flowers.
But what about when the shoe is on the other foot? When you’re the one who needs cheering up? You can’t cheer yourself up with flowers, and you want someone else to show you some sympathy. But without having to ask, to scream, shout and beg. You don’t want to make a fuss about yourself. You say, “I’m fine” but anyone who knows you knows you’re lying. Yet they choose to beleieve you’re fine.
Or maybe they don’t. Maybe they cheer you up. Until they selfishly forget about you. “You are feeling depressed? And you feel a bit suicidal? You’re going back to ‘that dark place’? Oh don’t worry, I’ll look after you, I’m here- OH MY GOODNESS. I can’t believe my gas bill has gone up.”
And just like that, -poof- they have something more important than you. Again.
So, if you have one of those “leave-me-alone-I’m-calling-in-sick-so-I-can-sit-and-cry” days, don’t worry. Don’t feel guilty. Let yourself have the time you need. Bask in your sadness, wallow in self-pity: because perhaps that’s just what you need. So what if your doctor says it’s unhealthy? Maybe you just need that time to cry it out. To not feel anything for a few days. To let yourself go emotionally empty, before you get back on the horse and start again. Forget about everybody else, and listen to what you want, what you need. It’s not a step back: it’s a time out.
Think about how you would treat those you love. What would you say? Would you tell them to just get over it? No. You would tell them that it really is ok. So I’m telling you, even if no one else does: you deserve to listen to yourself.