This Is What Chasing Happiness Looks Like

Question from reader: Por que me siento tan vacia si tengo a mi familia complete ? Por que puedo sentirme tan sola por que no encuentro felicidad en este mundo, siento que no encajo y aunque me sienta tan menoospreciada  por todos me siento mal y aunque ocurra a miles de psicologos no puedo encontrar la alegri? — Zaida

Translation: Why do I feel so empty if I have my whole family? Why can I feel so lonely because I do not find happiness in this world? I feel I do not fit and although I feel so underestimated by all I feel bad and even if it happens to thousands of psychologist I can not find joy. –Zaida

Dear Zaida,

There is a tattoo on my left arm that reads, let go and carry it. It’s written in my second brother’s handwriting. It lays just above where I used to cut.

A whole family does not mean a whole person. A whole family means support from those that see uniqueness even when you’re blind to it. I may not know the pain you’re in, but I do know that there is guilt from having a family that loves you.

When the cutting was at its worst, I reached out to my aunt that lives four hours away with a text picture of my broken skin from a razor blade. In the message I wrote: I’m scared. The next day she was at my doorstep. Even if I wanted to be burdensome, I couldn’t; she knew I needed help when I didn’t know how to ask for it. Here is the secret I’ve learned through my age: let family love you.

Love is not earned; love is given even to those that may take it and run. It’s terrifying when that kind of love can accept us as we are, instead of as we should be, because it means we are allowed to stumble. Every minute, souls are set towards perfection just to make decisions in fear, and live in medium-grade depression but advertise that life as if it were amazing. The thing that saves us from ourselves is exactly what whole families give: I love you, and I will follow you no matter what.

Know within yourself that loneliness and emptiness is never avoidable, but it’s necessary to form the version of yourself you’ve yet to meet: you can fail in playing it safe, too. Nothing is certain until it isn’t. When you approach loneliness and emptiness with contentment, darkness comes, but one simple fact will free you from this truth: there is something greater on the other side.

There is so much loneliness and emptiness when I look at my left arm, because I see the ones who took love and walked away instead of the love that stayed to heal it. Let go of the ones that have cut loneliness and emptiness into your past. You can’t help them, but know you’ve touched them when others turned away, and that’s enough. What I believe: suffering caused from the love that runs only makes a greater heart to give the love that stays.

Happiness to me is a catch-all word that is dehydrated of life experience. Happiness is garbage. It’s assumed according to circumstance. Happiness is at the expense of knowledge. Happiness is what we take but not what we give. Happiness is Tinder, OkCupid, Instagram, and Snapchat. Happiness is a lie we subscribe to, because the world tells us that anything else is weak. Know this: everything in your life will change when you decide to embrace the things that rise you out of happiness. Your life, my dear, is your decision. It belongs to no one else.

The cuts on my left arm also leaked over to my right arm, because I searched for happiness instead of myself. I remember someone I cared for deeply, there was happiness when I was with him, and despair when he was lying to distort my reality. I cut to avoid the emptiness and loneliness in-between. This is what chasing happiness looks like.

You feel you do not fit, but what image of yourself are you trying to fit into? There is an incredible misalignment that happens within us when the person God wants us to be outgrows the person we are trying to be. Is the joy you seek actually a complete surrender to what you can’t see? Or, is the joy you seek being your version of yourself? Joy, I’ve found, is just steps toward forgiveness. Forgiveness to the ones who said we aren’t good enough, forgiveness to the ones who have hurt us, and forgiveness to ourselves. Joy is a commitment to give everything in us. Joy is believing that something different can happen instead of what has happened. Joy is where someone’s life means more to you than it does to them.

For me, a whole family, loneliness with emptiness, happiness, and joy is to face the people who collect love and run, instead of cutting to not feel what they left behind, and say, “Here, it’s yours now.”

Give yourself permission over what you do next.

Can You Feel This, Inspirational Writing for Borderline Personality Disorder and Depression. Like and Share Can You Feel This on Facebook.


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