All the Feels

All the Feels


Yesterday, Kara at Quill and Camera wrote an awesome and heartfelt post, When I Get All Spongey.

She’s describing how deeply she feels, and how it’s hard to shelter herself from feeling it too much.

One part:

You would think cutting all of those things off would help,

but then I wouldn’t feel your joy either. Your excitement. Surprise. (bolding mine)

All the good things.

I get to share those too, so I guess it works out.

made *all sorts* of bells and whistles and light bulbs go off in my head.

I cannot in any way speak for Kara, so the rest of this is all mine.

I have contemplated cutting way back on Facebook because of the spongy thing. I read so many sad things, angry things, passive aggressive hateful things, that I then carry around with me like burrs stuck to my skin.  On the other hand I love keeping up with people and being a part of their life.

Kara’s post made me go OH!! when she said “but then I wouldn’t feel your joy either…so I guess it all works out.”

I realized at that moment,  that not only  have I been feeling other people’s bad feelings all my life, but I’ve been using their good feelings to feel joy, instead of  FEELING and CREATING MY OWN JOY.

I’ve spent my whole life hyperalert — scanning…scanning…scanning…to make sure I am safe and trying to be loved, absorbing everyone’s energy to do so…that I haven’t LIVED my OWN LIFE. I haven’t had the energy to, because it’s all been outwardly focused.

I went from doing this with my parents, to my husband. Gotta keep up the people pleasing, or I’ll shatter into a million pieces.


And then the babies came, and more babies came. I was obliged to and eagerly threw myself into the raising of them, instead of the raising of myself which hadn’t really happened yet.  I wasn’t a young kid, but I really was (and sort of still am) a 28 year old with the mental maturity of a 50 year old and the emotional/relational maturity of a newborn.

Now they are a little older. They still need raising, but not the 24/7 feet on the ground care they used to. And I’m feeling at loose ends about it all. Not because I don’t feel needed any more, but because I didn’t become a person before I had them and now that I’m not consumed with their care, that lack of self is painfully apparent. Only now it’s complicated by not being able to just “pick up stakes” and be me doing what I want because I can’t just leave my husband and children, nor would I really want to.

I look outwardly normal, successful. I have a Master’s degree, a home, stable marriage, five wonderful kids. People who know me say I’m kind and calm. It’s almost like someone else has done those things though. Is those things.

But now the blindfold is being removed. The scales are falling off.

Let them fall where they may.

14 thoughts on “All the Feels

  1. Oh my goodness! I knew you were a kindred spirit the minute I found your writing, but this is just perfect. Scanning, scanning, scanning, yesyesyes! I am so glad to have found you, my friend. And again, this is why the Internet is sort of ok sometimes 😉

    1. Now I’m really feeling all the feels. Thank you, Kara, for your comment. Reading your blog is like reading my diary, except I don’t keep a diary, and you write better. 😉

  2. Wow.

    “I’ve spent my whole life hyperalert — scanning…scanning…scanning…to make sure I am safe and trying to be loved, absorbing everyone’s energy to do so…that I haven’t LIVED my OWN LIFE. I haven’t had the energy to, because it’s all been outwardly focused.”

    This is me. ME! And I don’t know anyone or anything that is me. I don’t know any other way. Just reading this is something. Thank you–thank you!– for sharing.

    1. Hi Tabitha! You’re welcome. I’m so glad you’re here, and at the same time sorry that you’ve had to live this way also, because I know how exhausting it is, especially with a large family to raise (I see on your blog you have five kids like me 🙂 ). I’ll be doing a lot of reading, thinking, and sharing on the subject so I hope something in all that mess will help you or at least help you feel not so alone. You are not alone. 🙂

  3. This is wonderful. Thank you! It is so great to feel like I’m not alone as a sensitive person, a sensitive homeschooler even! in this world!

    1. Definitely not alone! I’m finding we are a very hidden but large group! Well, larger than I imagined, anyway. Thanks for your kind comment!

    1. I understand! I find myself having to go really slowly when I’m reading a book or blog that hits that raw spot. Close that book and walk away…to come back again and again because I must. If it helps any, there is a lot of fluff on my site too. 🙂 Gotta stay sane!

  4. I could’ve written so much of your post!! Wow. Thank you for sharing. This process of getting to know oneself is strange, painful, beautiful and worth it. It’s so good to know I’m not alone.

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