If it’s cyclical lets start at the end… I mean beginning

         Maybe listening to my gut is something I should trust more often. On Saturday I woke up emotionally numb. It’s hard to explain if you haven’t felt it before, as you may call it something different. It’s hard to breathe, it’s as if someone is sitting on your chest. Which makes sense because this happens when there is something weighing on me. I knew something was wrong. The pieces didn’t fit. I just didn’t like what I saw. If I don’t call it out, or act like the problem doesn’t exist, maybe it won’t take me under when it all blows up in my face. 

          The beginning always starts the same: a trigger! Something I’ve heard, seen or felt; which then, rolls into the flashbacks. A barrage of relationships past, that shows that this isn’t the exception to the rule, but the rule itself. The only difference is a new opponent. You’d think at this point I’d be strong, or smart, enough to see the signs and protect myself, but no. The flashbacks don’t put me in a place to prepare and protect but instead debilitate. The wounds of past battles throb, they bleed, they remind me that I wasn’t strong enough the first time it happened - so what makes this time any different!? So to survive I bury them. I put them in a place so far away that I don’t have to deal with them. I become emotionally numb. My own personal calm before the storm. 

          I don’t know about you, but I can’t protect myself from the coming storm. Why? Because facing it would mean admitting something was wrong. A storm can happen in any context when you are in a relationship with another, this may be with family, significant others, work, etc. For example; the storm may be your significant other breaking your heart, getting passed over for the promotion, or feeling rejected by your own flesh and blood. It boils down to being in a situation that asks you to invest all of yourself with the possibility of nothing in return. You’ll know what your storm is when it hits. I won’t try to arrange them on a scale of which is worse because it’s not my place to tell you how much you hurt. 

The one thing I can tell you is this:
“I know it hurts, and it sucks but just because you didn't get this doesn't mean you are worth any less than you are. You are wonderful and talented and worthy of Love and belonging. Sometimes you don’t get what you want because you are going to get something else you deserve. As lame as it is, there's something better out there for you. 

That stitch in your chest when you're trying to stop crying, your puffy eyes and the pain in your lungs from finding it hard to breathe. Those are your battle wounds. 

You put yourself out there enough that it didn't come back your way and you are wounded. That's a good thing. You cared. You fought. You lost. But you know you cared and you know you tried. You'll be okay. 

Know that, that little thing inside you that makes you antsy for more (I like to call innocent love) will put you out there again, vulnerable to more rejection but you'll do better next time. You’ll have grown, you'll know it won't kill you and that it's welcomed.”

           I’ve never been any good at taking my own advice. But hey! Here’s to us, the ones who have chosen to love and then have lost. To the ones who sense the storm and choose to hide; the storm will pass, and you can ask for help to rebuild. We’ve all been hurt and we all needed to ask for help. Don’t lick your wounds, stand-up and be proud that you survived the storm. You’ll be more prepared for the next one, with the rest of us by your side.
Xox, A

P.S- Dance it out! That always makes me feel better, so I made you a playlist :)

Joscelyn Bailey