When My Emotional Dam Burst


After years and years of built up pressure of emotions, thoughts and feelings that I repressed, I can honestly say that a dam has been broken. At first, I thought I had a pond full of these. Then, I was hopeful it was only a lake. Where I am now, I am almost positive that my dam was holding back an ocean of thoughts, feelings and emotions.

Starting in the spring of 2014, there was a small hole and a leak began. By September, the pressure was too much for my old barrier. When a friend gently asked, “What’s wrong?” The dam burst, and everything came rushing out.

Since that moment, I’ve been trying to reconstruct it. With scotch tape. You can probably guess how well that worked. I have been standing ever since, trying to use my hands and body to stop the metaphorical waters. (OK, real tears, too).

It’s exhausting. It’s frustrating. It’s impossible. Maybe, I need a new strategy.

I think my group therapist might be thrilled to hear me say this: Maybe it’s time I ride the waves or as he would say, “Sit with it.” I’d like to think I can get in a raft and paddle in the direction I choose. However, I should probably admit I am more accurately in an inner tube. I can use my feet or hands to push off the banks of the proverbial river when I get really stuck, but other than that, it truly is out of my hands.

I can keep myself from overturning and try not to bump too hard into obstacles in my way. Maybe, I am not supposed to have a barrier to my emotions. What a scary thought; however, if that is the case, then I am seriously hoping that after the initial (years long) accumulated pressure subsides, the flow will be a hell of a lot slower, and my journey will be a lot more gentle.

Now, to just make myself relax back in the inner tube and appreciate the blue sky. Wish me luck! Not easy for me, at all.

Image via Thinkstock.

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