Feeling the feels
Recently I read somewhere that,
“it is both a blessing and a curse to feel things so strongly”.
Yes. This is true. I don’t know how many times I have had this exact thought run through my head.
The highs are incredibly high, the lows can be incredibly low and everything in between is incredibly profound. What saves me is that I am an optimist, through and through. My mother always maintains that she is an incurable pessimist. Well, I suppose I got all her optimism, because I am an incurable optimist. Sometimes even to my detriment, but I’d rather go down an optimist than survive as a cynic.
Maybe that is what makes me an artist? I see beauty everywhere, even in the ugly and the broken. I see what was and what could be again. I laugh loudly, I smile with my whole body, I love with every last morsel of my being and my heart gets broken into a million little pieces. But I stay an optimist. I gather up the pieces to my heart and put them back together again and go right back to loving. Pain is just another aspect to joy. Joy is pain and pain is joy, one does not exist without the other.
I stay an optimist even when in the midst of my own personal hell, called bulimia. I know it will pass. I stay an optimist even when I find myself on the floor of my apartment because I just can’t sit or stand or do anything but lie on the floor. I know this does not happen often and I also know that it’s just a fleeting emotion which will pass soon. I know that after I’m done crying, I will go on laughing.
I love seeing artistry in every aspect of life. Smelling the aroma of artisan perfume, tasting incredible food, drinking the perfect cup of coffee. A beautifully tailored piece of clothing, the curve of the handrail in the stairwell, the filigree details of my great aunt’s gold ring.
I love seeing the beauty of the world, how nature is perfect, how people are all beautiful and radiant if only given the chance. I have my own little game of trying to make the sour lady behind the shop counter smile. I generally succeed. It’s a beautiful game.
Feeling the feels so strongly sometimes makes it difficult to live in the “ordinary” world. The mundane gets unbearable very quickly and my challenge to myself is finding ways to break through the grey and add colour to my world. Being on tour is draining, but never boring. You settle into a very peculiar rhythm and everything intensifies. When on tour I think we all feel the feels even stronger than normal. Tour is a magical place and coming off tour can be quite challenging, but I will write about life on tour in a separate post. It’s too vast to cover in a byline.
Generally I think feeling things so strongly is more a blessing than a curse, at least in my instance, because I have a basically sunny disposition.
I think we all have the ability to feel the feels with profound intensity, but we live in a world where our senses are constantly dulled. Artificial reality deprives us of our ability to experience ourselves. We hide from ourselves and miss out on the true experience of life.
Taste the food before adding salt. Eat the ripe red currants without adding sugar. View the world through the lens of your own eyes and your own heart, not through an instagram filter. Hear real, live music, played on real, breakable instruments, played by real, breakable people. Listen for the pieces of the souls that make up the magic of the music, the fingerprint of the composer, the vulnerability of the performer, the artistry of the instrument maker. Feel the feelings of your fellow human beings, they are you and you are them. No feeling is unique to only you, because what you feel you project onto your surroundings. We are unique and uniquely connected and in that way we are all the same. Feel the feels and rejoice in the fact that life is real and life is beautiful, even in the darkness of despair.