Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Warning...I'm emotional today

I often wonder what it's like to be a person who just doesn't care what others think.

I am so painfully not that way. I over analyze and take things personally and get hurt so easily, it can be crippling sometimes. E-mail and blogs have not made this any easier, as it's even harder when you can't see a person's expression or hear the tone in their voice.

But no, I spend most of my time obsessed with what others are thinking, and feeling weak.

In a way, I feel like it's good because I have a lot of empathy for others. I take their thoughts and feelings into account, I don't jump before I think. It's saved me several relationships. But I'm also not able to be honest about myself or my feelings or express when someone else has hurt me.

In response to my inability to communicate those difficult feelings, I often turn into myself and just avoid dealing with it. I'm a pushover. I steer clear of confrontation almost at all costs, which eats me up inside and drives my husband crazy (just as it drove my mom crazy for years, and my various close friends).

I don't stand up for myself, and I often let people convince me that a situation is my fault...even when it isn't. I'm not always an easy person to be around, I'll admit. But I think I'm genuinely a good person, a good friend, a good family member. I care, I'm easy to get along with, and I try to put others first.

The last 24 months have been just the latest in a series of self-discovery for me. Difficult situations will do that to you. I don't always know how to express how difficult things are for me, and fertility issues in particular can make you feel so incredibly selfish. It's literally the hardest thing I've ever gone through, month after month of waiting and researching and hoping and disappointment--all to no avail. I try to stay positive, I don't want people to feel sorry for me. Asking for prayers or help or a listening ear to talk about how I can't have a baby seems so, so, so petty to me....I truly think about all the other things in the world that are so much more important.

But to me, it's the most important thing. And I have to stop apologizing for feeling the way I feel, thinking the way I think, doing what I do.

And more than just in this particular situation. I have to stop apologizing for everything I feel or think or do. There has never, ever been a time where I've specifically, intentionally caused someone hurt or anguish. Never. I've caused a lot of hurt, but never intentionally. And I've spent so much time in prayer and meditation to understand the necessary relief that forgiveness can offer, and I've forgiven all that I can...even those that might not deserve it. The thoughts of anger and revenge don't haunt me or weigh me down like they used to.

It just feels like I'm at a point where I have to decide--do I care what people think or not? Am I going to sit here and continue to take it, sit here and continue to keep it all inside, sit here and continue to let people push me over, or am I going to confront my feelings and the people that cause them?

And I just don't's so much easier to just cry about it.


Pam said...

Jess, I know it's been hard for you to really express how you feel, and I absolutely agree that you have to stop letting people walk all over your feelings. You are an incredibly awesome and compassionate person. If someone is hurting you- confront them- they may be doing it unintentionally and if not, they'll know it's not okay anymore.

And as for the fertility issues, there's nothing selfish about wanting to have a child. You want to bring a person into this world, love them and take care of their every need- that is the OPPOSITE of selfish.

You're awesome.

Cheryl said...

I think you are an awesome person, and i don't even know you all that well. I used to be really bad about not telling others when they hurt my feelings, and my husband made me confront them (nicely of course). I came to realize that most people do not want to hurt your feelings and if they find out that they are, they usually apologize and try not to do it again. If they don't, they weren't a good friend in the first place. this was really hard for me to do (and still is), but I found it has saved me ALOT of stress over the years (and alot of tears too).
I know that you and John will make great parents! God has big plans for you. His time table sometimes sucks becuase it is not the same as ours. I know when the time is right, it will just happen. Maybe by telling others how you feel, it will relieve some of the stress that your body is having. NEVER underestimate the power stress has on your body, trust me!
We are praying for you and we love you and John very much!

Julia said...

Goodness, you and I are so alike when it comes to things like this.

Number one, I love you. And you will never ever annoy me or seem selfish to me.

Number two, if someone else thinks that, chances are they don't love you the way you deserve to be loved.

Number three, never think your baby issues are petty. This is the most important thing in your life right now. This is your biggest obstacle and the number one thing on your mind always. And there's nothing wrong with that. If someone else's most important issue right now is acting like a spoiled middle-schooler, well frankly, THAT'S petty and selfish. And believe me, others see it. YOU are not looked down upon in this situation. The sad thing is, others will never change their ways because they'll never realize that they are the ones causing problems. But that's not sad for you, just for them and any well being they may have had.

Number four, never ever apologize for the feelings you're having right now. You are the one who deserves an apology. It infuriates me that you'll probably never get one.

Number five, some people are bullies, and some are pushovers. Find solace in the fact that you are neither one of these things. At least when faced with confrontation, you stay calm and stick to your principles and the way you feel. You don't sell out others to make yourself look better. That's what makes you not selfish.

Number six, I'm so so sorry. I wish I could do something to make this all go away and make everything better again. It hurts me to see you hurt. And it angers me that people close to you are hurting you. I'd go give them a piece of my mind right now, but I know you wouldn't want me to because you are a good person, and don't want others to feel the pain you do, even if they deserve it. That is what makes you so rare and amazing.

Perhaps what upsets me most is that despite being told all of this, I know it won't take all the pain away. Again, you and I are so alike when it comes to these things. I know how it feels to be reassured, but never really feel it. I'm appalled by how some people are treating you right now. Some, it was expected, others come as a shock. Neither way is better. And it sickens me that these same people know what an emotional state you're in right now, and still feel a need to crap all over your feelings. THESE are the selfish people. Not you. Never you.

You are a wonderful person, who cares deeply for everyone around you, including some who don't always deserve it. Someday, one can only hope, they'll realize how lucky they were to have you, and how sorry they are that they pushed you away. By then you'll have found people who treat you the way you deserve to be treated, and the others will know that they gave up one of the most amazing people they'll ever have met. Maybe by then, you'll let me shove it in their faces.

I love you. Always.