Seek first to understand

Sometimes the darkness still comes calling. And I know it’s not fear. Much more a grief. A deep sadness for all that has been lost. The first month it happened it shook me. It was so unexpected. But now I have come to recognise it as my new normal. Descending just a couple of days each month. Like a little premenstrual beacon. Reminding me to be mindful. Reminding me to go gently. And I usually just ride it out with acceptance, knowing that it is just a transient state. That how I feel in this moment is not a true reflection of the beauty that now is my life. That feelings can be superficial and there is a deeper truth I can hold on to.

But this month the darkness came earlier and wouldn’t let go. Perhaps because I’d been busier. Perhaps because I’d let myself get a little rundown. Perhaps because I hadn’t stopped to top up my well. Whatever it was, my buffer was lower and the grief welled up and wouldn’t abate. This deep gut wrenching sadness. A pain I hadn’t felt in a long time. And I was reminded how emotional pain can sometimes be so much harder to bear than the physical. And I knew that all I needed was to be understood. To be loved unconditionally in this moment. That these feelings weren’t something I deliberately created. But rather a combination of brain chemistry and circumstance that would pass if given the opportunity.

But nobody can really understand unless they’ve walked this path, can they. So this time I allowed myself to do something I usually don’t. I started to google. To find someone who understood. And my prayer was answered. A blog of such beauty and humour. And I laughed out loud as she described so perfectly the situation. So perfectly my feelings. So perfectly the chemistry inside of me that was wreaking havoc. And in that moment I knew I was not alone. I felt the darkness go and lightness come. I felt so completely understood and I realised that is the greatest gift of all…

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