A friend once joked that I might have the opposite case of Asperger’s syndrome. Instead of having difficulties in social interaction and nonverbal communication, I overinteract socially and overcommunicate nonverbally. Do you like me? Are we cool? Have I done wrong? It’s as if I COULD FEEL EVERYTHING SO HELP ME GOD.
A joke is merely dramatization of truth, but there is indeed truth. It is true then, that I am emotionally sensitive. Sensitive comes from the word sense, and I’m saying that my emotional sense is highly receptive. I experience all ranges of emotions to a higher degree. Joy, love, fear, sadness, anger, jealousy. Even writing this very piece makes my hair stands, my eyes well up. But I bask in this state, it makes me feel like I’m entering some sort of fifth dimension trance that no drugs nor alcohol could ever induce.
There are the pleasurable kinds of emotions. Love, of course, is the greatest of them all. Not joy nor happiness, but love. I have a lot of love to give, and blessed with an abundance of love to receive. My most memorable moment last year was upon looking at my best friend’s engagement photo on my Facebook feed. I couldn’t contain the love inside. I kept looking at it. Her smile brought so much delight. I kept thanking God because I had to channel that gratitude somewhere. I couldn’t explain or rationalize how could someone else’s life experience that have totally nothing to do with me, could bring such magnitude of emotions. But it felt it, and it was more real than anything else.
Then there are the other kinds. Anger, hatred, jealousy, and all of their derivatives. In retrospect, I don’t think I am the worst person in the world. But my tingling emotional spidey sense convinced me otherwise. Even the slightest amount of negativity could send me to a downward spiral. If I were to see a successful peer on my social media timeline, I might feel a tinge of envy. But what’s worse is the amount of self-loathing I feel for feeling that way. There would be this imaginary dirty little substance I have in my chest that I wanted to take out. I would have an endless debate between me and myself, getting deeper into that dark, lonely place.
Now I want to tell you something important. Only recently that I have come upon the realization that–there are no good or bad emotions. They are just that, emotions, and every single one serves a purpose. Joy, happiness, even love, could exist only with the rest. They come in a package.
Sadness is the all-cleansing remedy. It brings me back to planet earth. It makes me reflect on myself and be aware of my interior state. A good cry once in a while releases all the muscle tensions away. Sadness is the defragmentation process for the soul.
Fear keeps me on my toes. It allows me to calmly assess the situation in times of panic and anxiety.
There are myriad of other emotions that I have still yet to understand. All this while I have been suppressing them, denying everything that makes a human. Now and again I kept making my own 7 Deadly Sins of qualities that I try hard to avoid. But emotions are merely the messenger of what is happening within. To ignore them is to run away from the truth, and as they pile up, sooner or later it will come back to haunt me.
So here is a promise to myself that from now on I will trust and attend to all of my emotions. I will observe, identify, and only then will I be able to let go.
Thank your sadness as much as you thank your joy and happiness. Thank your fears of getting into a new job. Thank your guilt of not spending enough time with the family. Thank your jealousy, worries, hatred, and anger. For only with all these emotions would you be able to live a whole and fulfilling life. For only with them you would be able to appreciate beauty.
Thank your sadness.