Posted by: Judy | January 2, 2012

Chapter 8

As I reread this chapter, I noticed how disjointed it is sometimes. Emotions are like that, I think. They aren’t smooth or neat or tidy. They can be huge and ragged and encompassing. They wouldn’t be emotions if they didn’t cause a bit of upheaval, be it pleasant or unpleasant.

It is only in the state of being emotionless that one is in a void, a vacuum. There is no air in a vacuum, neither is there life, existence perhaps, but not life in its myriad of ups and downs.

Emotions are what bring color and texture to life, light and shadow, which is why it is important to lay claim to one’s own emotions. I spent a great deal of my life stuffing my emotions out of sight, in the hopes they would also be out of mind. They weren’t.

Even as I ignored them, they nudged their way into my life. Ask me about oatmeal. Better yet, don’t. For many years, all I could tie to that association was a sense of nausea, the only outlet I’d allow for all the emotions churning deep inside. Once I allowed the emotions out, I discovered that the nausea had held a whole host of feelings like rage, shame, hate, fear, resentment, anger, helplessness, inadequacy, powerlessness, worthlessness.

It taught me that my physical reactions have emotions involved, whether or not I want to acknowledge them. By acknowledging them, I recognize their worth to me. I don’t know why I’m surprised by the thought that by rejecting any aspect of myself, I’m rejecting me.

That isn’t to say that there aren’t things I do and say and think and feel that I need to stop or change. There’s plenty. What I’m coming to realize is that as long as I reject any aspect of myself, then I am refusing to address the problem, pretending like it isn’t there if I close my eyes to it.

Instead, if I accept myself, even the ugly parts, THEN I can start making changes. And that’s really what I want, to become the person I want to be by changing what I don’t like and strengthening what I do like.

Emotions are a healthy part of life. I want to be healthy. I choose to accept emotions in my life, and I choose to take responsibility for my emotions, no one else’s.


  1. I like you comment that emotions are what make us a live. Severe depression stops feeling like any emotion and becomes totally numb. Moving through the motions of living is not being alive. Coming back to life is slow and painful and so worth it.

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