Sunday, February 10, 2008


Here is what Microsoft Word for Mac has to say about the definition of empathy:

em·pa·thy n
1. the ability to identify with and understand another person’s feelings or difficulties
2. the transfer of your own feelings and emotions to an object such as a painting

Encarta® World English Dictionary © 1999 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved. Developed for Microsoft by Bloomsbury Publishing Plc.

(sidenote: wow, it comes with its own citation? That is nifty! Scholarly articles from certain databases should come with that... it would make footnotes so much easier!)

Anyways. Sometimes I feel like I have more than the normal amount of empathy. I don't just read about things happening in the news, I feel them. There are a lot of days that I can't read milspouse blogs that are going through a deployment, because I feel it too much, and it hurts. I don't watch the news - at all- besides the nightmares that it gives me, I end up bawling through the whole thing, the good parts and the bad parts. If I'm reading, at least I can pick and choose what to read, and what paragraphs to merely skim.

Today has been one of those bad empathy days. I just can't seem to pull myself out of this rut. And I know that my life isn't that bad, but I feel so weighed down by everything that is going on all around the world. All I want to do is hide from the world.

I know that this is probably stemming from the fact that I haven't spoken to anyone in my family for the last two weeks. Ranger Man called my mom last weekend, to make sure she was okay... and I know logically that every day I go without talking to her, the harder it is making it. But I also know that the longer I don't talk to her, the more I can be in denial. I don't have to recognize the fact that I can't go 'home' anymore... it doesn't exist anymore. Denial is a good place. Until you get to days like today, when the only good reason you have for denial is denial itself- and denial without a modicum of justification isn't quite as sweet.

So instead I read the news, and I read other blogs, and everything compounds and I feel emotionally drained, even though I really didn't do anything today. It's almost as if the effort of not doing anything is weighing on me as much as I was doing something- it's not a passive nothing, it's a very active nothing. And I know, I know... I will have to talk to my mom and my dad again. But for now, I just don't want to. I want to pretend that they still live together and that everything still makes sense.

I think that's part of the problem, my worldview was rooted in this foundation that was consistent... and now that it's gone, maybe trying to adjust the way I see things is taking some time? Or am I making excuses again?

I'm still trying to figure out what it is that I am most upset about... What a rotten day.

1 comment:

Bette said...

Sometimes the hardest phone calls to make are the ones you'll eventually be most glad you did.

I can imagine how disappointed and upset you are with the situation, but I'd guess your p's are pretty miserable too right now. They'd probably love to hear from their daughter.

Here endeth the mini lecture. :-)