Time to pop the cork and let the tears flow
by Claire Nunez
Something my friends, family, professors— really anyone that has ever met me-- has told me is that I am not the best with my emotions. It’s not like I am a sobbing mess all the time, or punching walls; I’m the complete opposite. I keep everything cloistered within me. The inside of my brain is just filled with bottles and bottles of emotions, just lined up against the wall. They have always been there, all neat and tidy—until now.
I have always been a loner by nature. To an extent, I live mostly in the world in my head. I have always been this way. When I was younger, I created mythical worlds that never made sense to my friends, parents or teachers. In middle school, I wrote ridiculously long stories that were just anecdotes from my life construed in a way that was something of magic realism. I continue to dream situations from my life into something that is just characteristic of the fantastic. I find myself in class sometimes playing out situations on the stage in my mind. I am constantly processing. I am constantly thinking. I don’t think there has ever been a moment in my life when I could say that there was nothing much going on up there.
My mom constantly asks me what I am thinking about and I almost always reply with the blanket, “nothing.” The truth is, I am just taking everything in and processing it, and then placing the bottle on a shelf with like thoughts. I have been told that I don’t talk much, but when I do, it is something that is pretty insightful. Um yeah, it better be of great value I’ve been probably curing that thought in my brain for six days— or probably longer. In most circumstances, I just think everything through until there is nothing left to process. This probably sounds awful, it really isn’t that bad. I mean, I come up with a lot of cool ideas and solutions to problems for myself and for others, but at the same time I spend so much time up in my head that I am not always in the real world.
Even though my deep thinking really helps me solve problems, it has become overwhelming for me to keep everything I’m feeling inside for so long. I am not going to lie, I’ve had a pretty rough summer. I’ve always been one to struggle with my anxiety and that is something that cyclically comes back to haunt me, my grandmother was suddenly diagnosed with cancer and we soon lost her, I was in a long distance relationship that was just so tough for us to manage, and I had a falling out with someone close to me. It was really rough. I kept all my feelings of anxiety, sadness, anger, and depression decently closeted. My friends didn’t know, my family didn’t know, my boyfriend at the time didn’t know. I was the same happy, bubbly, and sweet person on the outside, being eaten up by the emotions inside me.
When I came back to Fordham, I was in a temporary state of euphoria. I felt so secure with myself and my happiness because of all the excitement that I forgot about the downright shitty place I was in. I denied that someone so close to me was dying, my relationship was crumbling faster than ever, and that I was pushing myself away from those who love me. It wasn’t until I lost my grandmother and then a month later my romantic relationship deteriorated, that I just felt all of the bottles in my head fall to the ground and shatter, all of the thoughts I have had for years just mixing and pouring out. I sobbed on my bed for about three hours with my roommate and best friend, just letting everything pour out. There were apologies, and angry strings of sobs about my newly created ex— and some about an old one from way too long ago, and just some anecdotes that were just rough to tell.
My facade of happiness and ditziness was gone. All of my security was gone. I honestly still can’t process everything that has happened in the past few weeks. All I know is that if I had just shared myself a little bit more with those around me, I probably wouldn’t feel like I’ve been hit in the face with a brick flying at me 80 miles an hour all the time. That’s a weird analogy, but that’s how much it hurt, except, like, a lot more. Feelings are weird. I wish I was more open; I obviously can’t change my past but I can change my projection into the future, kinda. I owe it to myself and to my loved ones to tell them how I feel about them. I tell my friends I value their support and love and humor and just their friendship overall; I try to text my mom every day with a quick update about my life and that I love her; I call and text my aunts and cousins to make sure they’re doing well. I wish I was more open in my romantic relationships in my past, but I try not to regret ending things for that reason. All I know is that feelings and emotions are important and I owe it to myself to share them just as people I love share with me.
I don’t regret anything that has happened in my past; it has all made me who I am right now. I am just going to offer up one piece of advice to you all: make sure you tell everyone how you feel about them; don’t be afraid to open up, it is scary, just trust me, I know how difficult it is. Sometimes it takes talking to someone on the outside—this can be even more difficult. This is something that I do, for myself and it has helped me open up to those I love and care for. Just let yourself be a little vulnerable, you’ll be stronger for it. Tell people how you feel about them before you lose them, it could make all the difference. As cliché as it may sound, just do it. I may be still cleaning up all the shattered glass and mopping all the emotions off the floor, but by expressing my emotions with words rather than just thoughts, has made cleaning everything up all the easier.