“What do you feel?”
Whenever this question is posed to me, my heart skips a beat while my brain spins. I always land on the same answer.
What a beautiful mess life is when you feel everything.
Until just recently, I didn’t even know that it was possible for people to feel less than I did. Feeling deeply is all I know. I love and hate with an intense passion that scares me sometimes. My highs are a snow-covered mountain, and my lows descend into the depths of the sea. Being born with a heart that feels intensely has been my greatest blessing and most bitter curse.
I can sense your joy or your sadness before I see your face or hear your words. My heart is left unguarded, taking in emotions like a valley takes the full force of a waterfall. Gravity pulls emotion into my soul. Whatever emotion surrounds me, I soak it up like a sponge.
Sometimes I despise feeling everything.
The little girl who cried tears of sympathy for sad cartoon characters grew up. Now she sheds tears as she subconsciously carries the weight of the world on her shoulders.
The weight of grief, the bitterness of loss, the ache of loneliness… I feel all these intensely in myself and in the hearts of people I love.
I saw this as a curse for so long before I realized that feeling deeply didn’t need to end with despair. I may have discovered my deepest feelings in the shadows of the night, but now I’m exploring the joys of the morning.
The depth of my sadness magnifies the beauty of my joy. The experience of pain makes laughter an invaluable gift. Hours in darkness make days in the sun a dream come true.
Some people call deep feelers like me empaths. Call it what you will. I don’t care. But never ever feel bad for me. I could be so easily overwhelmed by the heartbreak of this world, but I am not hopeless. I do not carry the weight of my emotions on my own.
Feeling deeply is a gift. A gift that must be nurtured, protected, and cared for, but it is a gift just the same.
Feeling deeply gives me the opportunity to experience incredible joy, and I am given daily chances to rely on my sovereign Savior Jesus who holds the whole world in His nail pierced hands.
When I bring my raw, sensitive heart to the Savior, He protects me. He holds me. He comforts me.
As I said, being born with a heart that feels intensely has been my greatest blessing and most bitter curse. But I am learning to dwell on the blessings, clinging to the truth as hard as I can.
From the end of the earth I will cry to You, when my heart is overwhelmed; Lead me to the rock that is higher than I.