I am driving in the car, the radio is playing, something is said and I laugh along to the presenter. I drive along, stop at lights, indicate left and when the lights change I move forward to turn and it hits me. Not a car, truck or anything like that but it feels like it. It’s just this massive wave of sadness. I have to stop the car, I indicate and pull over. Turn off the engine and just sit there for a second. I don’t really know what to do. Should I cry? Phone a friend? Call myself a donut, pull myself together and drive on? I opt for ‘phone a friend’
‘Hey hun, how are you doing?’
I sigh. I am sighing alot lately. ‘Not so great just this minute’
‘Awww hun, I wish I was there, I’d give you the biggest hug!’
I smile and there is a tear, or one hundred, at these words. And then I stop and wonder what on earth I am doing because I’m not a crier, a negative or a dweller. I’m a logical person! A positive! An optimist! My friends and I have coined the phrase ‘high-polar’, meaning we’re sunny side people, a little hyper, looking for fun and sidestepping negativity. I like being a high-polar, always have, always will. I can always see the silver lining, or cheer someone up, I like doing it. But when you are that person, when you’re running around saying ‘lifeissofreakingawesomedontstopmenow’ and life stops being so freaking awesome for you, when do you get the chance to say, ‘Actually, I’m really very, very sad how that worked out and I want to sit on my sofa, in my pj’s, watching Bridget Jones, eating pizza, licking ice-cream off the back of a spoon, sighing about Ryan Gosling and not washing’. When you’re the ‘go-to’ person where do you ‘go to’ to be sad? I have learnt two things.
First thing my friends have taught me lately is that no-one expects me to be wonderful and ‘shiny happy’ all the time. Apparently I’m a bit annoying when I’m too ‘high-polar’ anyway, a bit like Elf. It’s okay for me to cry and say ‘I feel very small and unsure right now’
Second thing is that when you are sad, you have to BE sad, there’s no point trying to be happy when you’re sad, it just seems to make you sadder. You need to pull your car over, cry, have snot and mascara trickle down your face, wipe it on your sleeve because you have run out of tissue and sit at your desk all day with one sleeve rolled up and tell anyone who asks that it’s the new fashion.
You have to do this. Why? Because it’s good to know that you went out there, lived fully and passionately, you dared to believed, and you were just doing what you do. You could not do it any other way! So maybe this won’t be the last time I sit in work with a sleeve rolled up, but isn’t it all part of the lovely big, exciting journey that is life?