Wow, I can’t believe how long it has been since my last post! I was on a roll there for a while, but life intervened. It’s been absolutely crazy adjusting to my new job, new city, and new life. But thank God for it all. I am loving my new job, and just finished a fundraising campaign that lasted 30 days, included 35 events, and raised over $2.2 million for Syrian refugees. I seriously love my job! It makes me feel good knowing that I have helped so many people in need.
That has always been my life’s goal: to give back to others in any way I can. When I was younger, our mosque used to participate in different acts of kindness around the community. When I got older, I helped organize events in my community to raise money for those less fortunate. And now, I am paid to do what I love to do most. God is good.
Since it’s been a while, a lot has happened in my life. Things have changed drastically. And although I want to divulge these details right now, I think I might have to wait a few more weeks. I know, I know….I’m teasing you. But really, it’s been a very emotional time for my family and I. What I will talk about though is what I have learned from this experience so far.
Life throws you curve balls, and me being the nonathletic person that I am, I had no idea how to hit them so that they sailed far far away from me. So I always took the beating. The most important thing to know about emotional and mental pain, is how you deal with it. And all my life, I have been very bad at expressing my emotions immediately. I suppress them until one day I finally explode. I’m not sure why; I don’t remember anyone telling me it was shameful to express my emotions. But I’ve always felt that women are viewed weaker when they show emotion, and I always wanted to be this strong, independent woman. Men say women use emotions as a weapon to get what they want or to gain sympathy, and I never wanted that to be my reputation. I got things on my own merit.
So, three years ago (when my last engagement exploded in my face), I cracked. Something inside me broke. And it would be very cliche of me to say it was my heart that broke, but it’s true. Not in the way you think though. It didn’t break because I lost a love; a small crack appeared on the surface that, over time, slowly started to spread. Now, every time something sad happened, these things would appear in the corners of my eyes. Wet drops that would sting and burn until I willfully released them so they slid down my face. It wasn’t even anything I could control. Now, any little thing would hurt me, and I’d panic and feel anxious. So, naturally, I went to a therapist and got meds to help suppress those feelings. I just didn’t have time in my life to deal with all these emotions.
Over time, I retrained myself to hold back my emotions (and wean myself off the meds). It took a while. Actually, until this past spring, it was hard for me to not show how I feel. It started showing itself on my face, unwarranted. But then, almost overnight it seemed, I started to feel more in control of myself. So I felt like my old self again. Yay me, right?
Well, then something happened at the beginning of the summer. And I was faced with a huge emotional problem. So naturally what did I do? I shut down. I showed no emotion. I ignored everyone and everything around me and decided to just focus on myself and my new job. Was that selfish? Maybe. But I also knew that if I allowed just an ounce of feeling back into my heart, that crack that had finally been sealed would rip open with such power that I would fall apart. I could not afford that.
So now, two months later, I sit here and wonder if I made the right choice. Because the situation is set to get so much worse, and so will I continue to be cold and unyielding, or will I one day break down and melt into a puddle of emotion? It’s not to say that I don’t have trusted friends to talk to about this situation, because I do. And I thank God for them every day (Love you B!). But I have yet to share my emotions with my family. They are the ones affected the most, so to them I must seem like a cold-hearted bitch. Yet I always wonder, would they have even been supportive if I was in my emotional state?
Looking back over the last three years, as I rebuilt myself after my heartbreak, they were all there for me. Yet not in the way I expected. So it’s safe to say that I learned to never really rely on anyone to help me. The only one I’ve been truly able to rely on, is myself. But that is a whole other story, meant for a different blog post.
So, for now, I will leave you with these thoughts. Maybe it’s the cynic in me, but it seems that the only one who can ever truly help you in a time of need, is yourself. I guess I will see how bad this situation really gets before deciding how much I want to share with my family. I must say though that I feel so relieved that I’m in a different city and don’t have to face it daily. Might seem a bit cowardly to say, but I can’t deny the truth. For that, I am grateful.