We were both smiling, but neither of us was feeling happy. We had to smile. It was required of us to beam, to glow, to prattle nonsense through the lemon wedges of our mouths. Then my friend revealed her acidity. "I'm fueled by rage," she hissed through her grin. I felt the same way. We were playing the part of goddesses. We had to be beautiful, happy, serene. We were pissed.
I'm a strong believer in feeling the rage, the funk, the whatever it is you are feeling just to get through it. Sometimes I poke a finger into my wound just to see if it's healing or not and to feel the pain.
The past couple of days I've been in a funk. A nasty mood. A foul place for thinking. A rot house of a stew slopped into a muck and mire. I can make all the positive affirmations I want, write about all the things I'm grateful for, and still the crank continues. Why? Because I'm not acknowledging what is bothering me when I do those things. I am thinking all around it, above it, and below it to get away from the negativity.
I don't believe that if you are positive all the time, you can will away the bad. Smiling helps me, sure, reminding myself of what I am grateful for is excellent, but if I feel angry, I ride it out. I do my best to figure it out. If a friend is sad, I ask her what is the matter, I don't hand her a platitude. Sometimes I forget to do this for myself. Why wouldn't I ask myself what the matter is in order to explore it? You can't force away sadness or anger with a stubborn grin.
Without the negative, there can be no genuine positive. Without feeling what you honestly feel, you'll never figure out who you really are. You'll be a mocking mask slapped onto a cardboard cutout. You'll be greeting card verse.
What's bothered me these past few days? Well, I wrote it out, I rode it out, I talked it out, and now I know two things: I feel better today, and I don't believe in a "fake it til you make it," philosophy. I don't think I knew that about myself before.