Caution: adult language below!
“God, are you happy, like, all the time?”
Sometimes, I get asked this question in an exasperated, annoyed, condescending regard, as if the thrill and passion of conversing with people in a positive way is daunting and unbelievable.
We know those people that have a smile on their face all the time—no matter what.
I understand this person well—because I am that person.
Only, I’m not.
I’m not happy all the time.
Lately, I feel inadequate more than I feel enough.
My smile in regards to their question is usually a good enough response, they assume, in some impossible way, that I’m happy-go-lucky 24/7, when, in actuality, my smile is a flabbergasted response in humor: their question is far from true.
I’m not happy all the time.
Am I easily amused? Yes.
Do I find a zealous wonder in small moments, seemingly insignificant situations? Absolutely.
Am I a human being who is capable of conveying only one emotion? Ha!
I’m almost flattered to be perceived that way.
It’s funny how when you hear about the way others perceive you, you ache for their bright, positive, vibrant interpretation. I wish I looked in the mirror and saw what other people saw. I wish I thought about myself in the glow that others see.
You see, dear world, sometimes as I’m smiling my brain is screaming!
The wretchedness that ripples through my mind, if heard would be melancholy and near devastating. Darkness infects my mind in a terrible smoke, a great torment.
I am at war with myself, daily.
As fear, inadequacy, and un-grounding thoughts arise, I shake my head in dismay as if the thoughts will fly from my measly head. I battle the mean thoughts I think about myself with positive ones, but sometimes, I admit, I’m not successful.
Sometimes, I feed the darkness, succumbing to the belief that I will never amount to anything.
Sometimes, I suffer from a terrible dismay that maybe I’ll be working paycheck to paycheck serving overpriced chicken fingers and mouldy beer for the rest of my life, and that sharing yoga won’t amount to any kind of life for me.
Sometimes, I want to scream that the college education I am still paying for, I abandoned in a quest to travel write and teach yoga. I wonder whether it was all folly.
Finances are my greatest devil as of late. One giant bill after the other; bank accounts closing, credit bureaus in a fury.
I feel like I’m drowning, and the second I start to make some financial gain, come up for air, the hand of life socks me in the fucking face back in the water; tricky financial snakes coil my lungs, suffocate, choking me to helpless tears.
I’ve collapsed in a hidden ball of tears countless times the past two months. I know some remedies; meditation, breathing, yoga, but I feel uninspired to heal myself, rise above my fickle brain.
I can’t seem to run from the pain, because, it’s my heart; heavy, dull.
My soul, recently so aflame, radiant, bursting to touch all it’s surroundings diminishes in the heaviness of the cold here in Colorado.
The bitter sting of wind dulls the warmth of my heart each day.
This scares me.
I’m mourning the loss of the girl of last fall who glowed with light. When I look in the mirror the happiness has escaped my eyes, despite my smile.
Where did she go?
They say, cruel devils, that home is where the heart is. He has my heart, but I don’t feel home.
Bitterness is a ensnarling demon that my kindness struggles to hold back. Kindness has weakened. The demon bites hard.
I’m starting to wound the ones I love.
I see the cracks in his smile. I want to sharpen his glow, but my inability to add spark to the world seem futile.
My heart is frozen and I can’t seem to unthaw. My sadness swims, uncharacteristically, close to the surface. So close, that tears are always at bay.
I drown in it.
I feel like I lost the the glow of my soul in the heavens as my flight home from Europe coursed over sea.
A flight that intended to bring me home, but I don’t know where home is.
Did I make a wrong turn?
Is sadness the swift killer of love?
I feel like a plant in too small a pot, my roots are confined in their desire to grow.
Anger is a habitual response in my brain, and when I’m alone, I throw things. I scream in frustration at the top of my lungs in my car.
I’ve moved past the pain I used to feel in vanity but I question my worth, my life.
I often feel trapped.
When I’m angry my voice comes alive. Words flow onto the page. Whereas, when I’m happy and content, my voice is uninspired—bored, even.
Is that why most artists struggle with a negative pensive air about them?
Do they need to feel emotionally tortured for their work to flourish to its’ greatest potential?
Our darkness, our raw feelings is what connects us all together. Yes, yes, we connect with the light, but it’s in discovering our similar darknesses that make us feel less alone at night.
Let me be enough, brain, you’re enough, please know.
I’m drowning, failing, I just want to collapse and give up. But to whom do I surrender?
Who is defeating me?
My own mental demons—my own mind!
She tricks me, so often. She makes me bite my tongue, when my truth wants to erupt from me!
I’m at war, the inner battle within me is masqueraded by a large pretty smile.
Ah, I’m more than this shell, this carcass I walk around in. My body is small but the fire that burns in me is fierce.
Don’t fucking take me down, world. I’m a part of you.
I can control the energies around me, but my mind is infected.
Can I save me from myself?
Our minds are the constructors and conductors of all reality. When my heart is bitter, the world seems cold and kindness more noticeable because it sparkles against the dark.
It’s time to write a new melody, conduct a new verse.
The battle is within, it is always within. Your world is your reality.
I’m changing my reality.
I’m picking up the pen, writing a new song—here it goes.
Author: Elizabeth Brumfield
Editor: Renee Picard
Photo: Authors own