Monday, September 28, 2015

Accepting that I am simply ‘Too Much’

If you’ve ever found yourself sitting in a movie theater sobbing while the credits are rolling and trying to picture the story line beyond the carefully chosen ending, or reading the same paragraph in your favorite fiction novel over and over again because it spoke to your soul, or found yourself using the phrase “spoke to my soul”, than it is likely that you may be a too much person like me.

We too much people feel deeply about things that may never affect us and are usually bottomed out emotionally by things that actually do touch our lives.

We love like it’s nobody’s business and we run like the wind when the threat of pain seems evident.

We enjoy deep rich ground breaking laughter and relish a good heaving cry, sometimes simultaneously.

Too much people write sappy love letters with no prospect of ever getting one in return and we don’t care. Okay, we care but we don’t let it stop us.

When we cook and feed our loved ones we look at the expressions on their faces at the dinner table (especially Holidays) to make sure that every bite is pure pleasure.

We can never hear or say “I love you” too much. In fact, we know that we will never get our fill of those words and cease the expectation from others.

We don’t just like sunsets, we have to write about them, photograph them, sing about them all while basking in them.

Too much people aren't just creative, we’re incomplete without creativity.

And by the way, we simply don’t fit in to the normal world. We can’t be normal and that’s where it all gets a bit messy…

I discovered that I was a too much person when I was a little girl. I cried too loud and too much. I laughed too loud and too much. I felt too deeply and too much and it depressed me immensely because I knew that I would always have a problem interacting in the normal world.

I started writing poetry when I was about 11 years old. I needed an escape from reality that painted pictures that I could only dream of. My romantic side came straight out of every movie that I saw and I rehearsed my happy endings daily in my mind. I was feeding my too much nature at rapid speed and it kept me cocooned in my own world and away from my dreaded reality as much as possible.

I grew up in a city where being tough and knowing how to show it meant everything. I tried to fake my way through bullies and fights by acting tough but the real me was always crying profusely inside. Mean spirited-ness hurt me deeply. I didn’t fit in my city because I didn’t have what it took to fight my way through it.

I knew when I was young that if I was ever going to survive and protect my heart and meet the most sensitive Knight in shining armor that ever lived, I would have to move far, far away, like Paris or Monterey. So I moved to Delaware in the 80’s. Today, I currently live in North Carolina…close enough.

I gave up my fairy tales in my twenties and went along with the normalcy of life for as long as possible. Every so often my too much-ness would eek out in the form of a poem, a dance or a good cry but I knew that it couldn’t navigate my course under such normal circumstances. Deep abiding love eluded me and only showed up in my dreams and I gave myself a pass on the happy ending instead, I settled for a good night’s sleep as a young mom.

I’ll spare you the rest of the gory details of being too much and trying to fit in at church, work, my children’s schools, the suburbs and so on. If you are a too much person, you know how that worked out.

Fast forward to now. It’s a year before my fiftieth birthday, my children are nearly grown, I’m divorced and the scary menopause dragon’s hot fiery breath doesn’t even scare me anymore. “Bring it on!” I yell with a clenched fist. “I can handle it!” It is now time to allow the real me, the too much me to live before it’s too late.

With more funerals than weddings under my belt, I’ve decided not to waste my time being someone that I am absolutely not. I’ve decided that God likes me…a lot. I’ve decided to be that mom that tells her kids she loves them all the time, even when they wish she wouldn't. I blog about my life in order to make my connection with the rest of the world stronger. My prayer life consists of one endless conversation with God on a daily basis. I cook with love. Cry often and laugh deeply when life calls for it.

The hardest thing is taking part in the pain and suffering of others, even when I don’t know them personally. Waking up feeling someone else’s grief is quite taxing, yet it goes along with the territory.

I avoid large crowds even when I’m in them by focusing on my destination and not faces because I can read faces and sometimes what I read is not so pleasant. My bedroom is my sanctuary where books and music have free reign. My closet is literally my prayer closet and has seen its share of travail. I don’t just love the ocean, I need it to feel alive and to write. I have a travel bucket list as long as my arm. And I still dream of happy endings but I’ve decided to make those happy endings a daily occurrence whenever possible.

I have no idea what the future holds for me as far as Knights in Armor are concerned, so I let the little girl in me dream big dreams before drifting off to sleep at night. After all, she needs the validation of knowing that being a too much little girl can lead to being an awesome too much woman…

Too all of my too much friends, don’t ever conform to the tendency of normal. Your tears are needed, your heart is needed, your lovingly prepared meals are needed and your overbearing too much love is needed in this world. You are not broken, so please stop all attempts to fix you and just continue being the too much you that you are, for all our sakes.

With more love than you can imagine,

Your Bare Foot Poet Friend

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