Thoughts are the shadows of our feelings


I am coping with life as best I can, because that is all any of us can do. And some days are fun and funny, sunshine and roses, smiles and warmth. Other days I struggle to see beyond the clouds, even when I know that they shall pass. Most days I drift, the hours pass by as I try to make them count. I clean, I cook, I am there when required, and I write.

My role is one of support, my lack would be noticed more than my presence. The friends I meet up with for walks, my wider family, they have their own lives to lead. Would they miss me if I was gone? Perhaps there would be moments of sadness, but I am a shadow, appearing briefly before they move on into a different light.

I have yet to experience the loss of a close family member, a death. My mother once called me a cold fish for my lack of feeling and I carry that thought, untested for now. I see grief in others and wonder how I shall cope when the time comes.

I have lived through the passing away of grandparents, aunts and uncles, even a few cousins over the years. I cried for some, but not with the passion I felt at the death of my daughter’s teenage friend. The depth of her family’s loss touched me to the core. I felt that deeply, yet moved on.

I rarely cry over films, getting more upset at animal cruelty than that involving people. Animals trust and love unconditionally, whereas people can be so selfish. Is my lack of feeling selfish and cold? Is it a result of the armour I have built to survive?

I wonder sometimes who would miss me if I were gone. My absence would inconvenience; the jobs that I do must be done and would fall to others, who would likely find them mind numbing too. The one thing that I and I alone give is a mother’s love. Nobody could care for my children as I do.

I wonder if I am as cold and uncaring as some may think. Am I reflecting back my own experience or is it an innate part of me? Have I buried the warmth and love that I once felt so deeply to protect it, or to protect myself? I wonder how I feel; I wonder if I feel.

Do not criticise me for my perceived lack of emotion, if I do not act as you would. Too often I feel almost more than I can bear and struggle to cope. I bury, gloss over, make light of what is happening. I may not see life as you do, but I have not lived your life. And you have not lived mine.



3 comments on “Thoughts are the shadows of our feelings

  1. K.C. Wise says:

    Truly these are a mother’s thoughts… we are so vital and yet so unimportant at the same time. We’re taken for granted in such ways as it borders on something abusive… we’re seen but not heard, or heard but not seen, or unheard and unseen… mostly that. It’s a sad state of affairs. I know, though, in the moments like this, that I WOULD be missed for all of the right reasons. That this house and family function because I’m holding it together. That the “thank yous” and appreciation are often conveyed in ways that I don’t expect and sometimes don’t notice. But they are there. Just as I am here, needed, WANTED, appreciated.

    I don’t know why being conservative about how you express your feelings would make you a “cold fish.” I rarely cry as well. I cry more in frustration than anything else. I’m moved to tears by great acts of humanity next. My husband cries at the drop of a hat and it makes me really uncomfortable. If we have a fight, he cries. I often tell him how unfair I think it is for him to do it. (And I realize that this, too, is unfair.) The way that we express our emotions is our own and likely cannot be changed…

    I don’t really know where I’m going with this. Except to say that I think your thoughts are normal, and that I have had them myself from time to time. I find, though, that when I start thinking them it is very hard to get out of them. They are a spiral slide downward to very scary places, places I haven’t seen since I was an adolescent just emerging into my identity and perspective on the world. There are ways out of it, and I hope you have your own strategies for doing so. Because your presence is known to the world and you matter.

  2. LOH KOON HOONG says:

    We live from moment to moment; each moment is the last; there is neither victory nor defeat.
    Life is not a journey; it is a moment.

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