Warning. Proceed with Caution.

As some of you might have picked up on, I’m struggling a bit with all of this. Believe it or not, I am not referring to the whole ‘life thing’. I think we are all clear that I don’t quite have that down yet.

No, I mean this. Writing this. It is the thing that brings me the most joy these days, but I can’t help but wonder, am I killing you? Are you so over hearing me bleed? I know I am. But shit, I’m still bleeding a little bit.

So I admittedly went into publishing mode, which I certainly don’t think is a bad thing. It makes me happy to see my words out there in a forum that can reach more people. I love seeing people’s comments, even if they aren’t positive (okay, I don’t like seeing those, but I guess it means that I made them feel something enough to take the time to write about it). And I’m not going to lie, it’s pretty fucking cool to see my bio hanging out down there below an article published in the Washington Post. I’m only human.

But then I come back to this, to you: this community that has grown into something akin to a family, kindred spirits who offer me brief glances into your lives. I get to learn your beautiful stories, one post at a time. It feeds my soul on a daily basis. And your writing!! It blows my mind, and I can’t believe you actually want to read mine. But now, I have this crazy fear you’ll stop wanting to. Because god dammit, I’m tired. I’m tired of being sad. I’m tired of writing about being sad. And I can’t help but think that you have to be tired of reading about sad. But I haven’t quite arrived at happy yet, so what the hell do I write about?

On a side note, for you poor souls who think going on a second or third date is a good idea, I have discovered a full proof method to ensure that we definitely won’t. Just say something to this effect:

So I think you should write about…I don’t know, something happier, like your travels or maybe how you are getting through all of the pain…something that might inspire people, maybe give them hope…

Really? You’re joking, right? Because I seem to recall you telling me that is why you loved my writing in the first place. ‘It’s so honest, raw, engaging, bold…’.

Regardless, I’m just not quite at a place where I’m ready to conjure up my favorite memory from childhood, or from Spain or France or Colombia. I will someday, I have countless. But until I’m in the mindset to write about those memories with the same authenticity and passion I can about the not-so-happy parts, then they will remain unwritten.

In the meantime, I have a bit more bleeding to do.

But I am curious, are your requesting happy because it makes you more comfortable? Is it because, if we did actually start dating, someone you know might read what I write and question why I’m still so sad and heartbroken if we are dating? Shouldn’t I be ‘over it’? Shouldn’t I be happy because I’m with you?

Or maybe you really do just want to read something happy. I totally get it. My favorite new blog, The Incurable Dreamer, is my favorite precisely because it makes me laugh. The author’s writing is honest, raw, engaging…and it’s hilarious. I laugh out loud. And I also cry. Because parts do make my heart hurt, mainly because I can completely relate to her, and because she writes so brilliantly that I feel like am her, in the place where she is, seeing what she sees, and feeling what she feels.

I love it precisely because she does what I so want badly to make others do….she makes me feel.

So apologies if this comes across as bitter, or if it makes you uncomfortable. I want you to feel how you feel, and I want to know what that is, even if it isn’t always what I want to hear.

I won’t, however, write what you will always want to read. And in my defense, I try to set a tone, even throw out a warning in the beginning, to give you a head’s up if what I wrote is going to be especially brutal.

Summary: For those of you interested in a second date, not to worry. I stopped dating altogether, so feel free to offer up any advice you have. And for those of you who are weary of me being sad and writing about it, please know, I am too. But this present state will eventually subside and give way to the me who almost always has a smile on her face and a positive spin on shit situations.  She’s still here, you’ll see glimpses of her in even the most tragic posts, but you have to look a little closer sometimes. And you might actually have to feel something…

So, you have been warned.

proceed

Advertisements

39 thoughts on “Warning. Proceed with Caution.

  1. Kudos on having an article published and being willing to be real and vulnerable. I’ve found that I get the most response on my blog when I am real and vulnerable too. Thankfully, I’m mostly past the bleeding stage and stable, rebuilding my life one day at a time. Hugs, Brad

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much, Brad! I’m so happy to hear you are. I’m getting there, but it truly hasn’t been that long for all the shit that happened in such a short period of time…I have a hard time being patient and gentle with myself, clearly. Hugs back to you and thanks for taking the time to read and share your thoughts!

      Liked by 1 person

      • You’re most welcome Brooke. Compassion seems to be my guide these days. May you find that gentle place inside to help you love and nurture. Have you heard of Matt Kahn? I like his book and process to offer ourselves a kind “I love you” to our heart routinely and no matter what arises inside or out in our experience. Hugs, Brad

        Like

  2. A. I love you.
    B. I want you to write happy because I want to read it. And I am happy. I love your writing. And I love to see you succeed at it. But I’m in a happy place. So although I feel for you, and where you’ve been, and where you are, I don’t want to relive those sad days that I once had too. Someone is benefiting from your writing! It’s just not me. And I’m busy. So I have to be selective in what I choose to read. I’m probably not your target audience. But as I said, I’m a big fan of you! So I read what I can when I can. And I’m proud of you. xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Ur a fekin header 😂😂 ppl like readin the truth and the sad things most of the time its wat makes it enjoyable to read but it helps me writing crazi shit frm my fuked up life as tbh i write it out in my crazy book show some american gal it she edits it as i cant spell for shit and wouldnt know a full stop frm a bus stop.i never really read it again as wen its on paper and outta my fekin head i dnt wanna think bout it again….i love writing like ur self and ppl seem to enjoy my horrible storys so write wtf u want to its good and iv only read 2 posts so far and im off to read more …..l8tr😉😉

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The first two times I read your post was yesterday. I just reread it for the third time, and my reaction was the same as the times before. You cannot wipe the smile off my face. And to say that I am proud of you is not only an understatement but a weak attempt at articulating how much I appreciate this honest piece of art. Brooke, you have gone and made me feel – a whole lot. Thank you for sharing my crazy little blog, it means so much. The fact that someone as accomplished as you see’s something in the words I write makes me feel like I have arrived. It’s showtime baby! From the bottom of my heart, thank you. But you know, as I read your post, I felt a bit of shame. Your honesty surpasses any I have splashed on a page, and I couldn’t help but feel inspired to be a little more vulnerable. When I write something funny, my friends laugh at me and make comments about the stupid shit I do…which happens all the fucking time! But when I write something about the pain that is threatening to take me down, I receive silence in return. Nothing but crickets. And I always wonder why my feelings scare them so much. I am still me. But I am made up of so much more than funny. And all of it is what makes me who I am. And you like who I am, right? As I gobbled up every word you wrote, I thought, if I wrote something like this my friends would say nothing, but it is sometimes exactly what I want to write. And of course, I don’t. So, I kind of feel like a fraud. Because behind the laughs and the humour, is a girl who is broken. Every day that girl struggles to keep the hurt in her heart at bay, and some days when it is so intense fights to piece herself back together. But THANK GOD, for some unknown reason, I was blessed with the ability to see through all the pain and the darkness. I know that the light and beauty my eyes see and feel shines so radiantly most people can’t even imagine it exists. It is my reward for the struggle. My opinion is that I have been given the keys to the magic kingdom. And this world is mesmerizing and has captivated my heart and soul. So, if someone said tomorrow, I can take this all away, and you won’t hurt anymore, a thousand times over I would say no. Fuck no. I want it. Every last bit of it. And I choose to keep feeling because the mess inside is what fuels me to keep moving forward and growing into the person I have always longed to be. What a fucking gift it is to have been stripped down to the point you have no choice but rebuild piece by piece. You get it. I know you do. So, this that you just wrote is everything. Honestly, it is. Don’t you dare worry about the people who tell what you should or shouldn’t do or the ones who feel uncomfortable with your honesty. You keep bleeding it out, and writing the way you do because I promise that your words are affecting people, and perhaps even saving someone from the darkness they too are lost in. You are so much more than just sad. I know that. Everyone knows that. But when you are ready, you will share that part of yourself. Until then, you keep writing it down and bleeding it out. It is what will save you and help you find that place where it might not hurt as much. I AM SO SORRY FOR THE NOVEL! But, this really affected me. Please never let anyone tell you whether you have bled enough or too much. Your words are your power, and you shouldn’t alter them for anyone. You too have been blessed with the keys to the kingdom, I know you know that. It is dark in here, but it shines every so brightly…doesn’t it?

    Liked by 2 people

    • ok, once again. crying…after laughing, and ending feeling so warm and fuzzy and loved…I don’t know if I have words to do this justice, and I definitely don’t know where to start. So, I’ll start here. I feel the exact same way, exactly…of course I do. I think you are my Canadian reflection. I think it’s so crazy that you don’t see how honest your writing is, even if you don’t expose your darkest parts all of the time. What you wrote about a couple of weeks ago, about going to that dark place, made my cry…like tears streaming, precisely because it was so honest and heartfelt and so fucking painful for me to read- a) because it breaks my heart to think of you sad or hurting (even if I only know you except for as my blog bff), and b) because I have been there, I AM there, and you made me feel it. So, this is kind of the crux of what I’m trying to say: The reason why you hear only crickets, is because it just makes so many people uncomfortable, not just because they don’t want to feel sad, but because they don’t want to think of their beautiful, kind, brilliant friend, who I’m quite sure makes everyone’s day brighter and better, sad. Read my friend, Jill’s, comment. She is the perfect example, and I LOVE that she was honest and brave enough to share it with me. She isn’t sad right now and doesn’t want to read about sad and doesn’t want to revisit when she was sad. I don’t blame her. I don’t think when I get back to happy, I will be able to read sad for awhile either. But I also know how that feels to not hear any reaction from people you care about most when you share your darkness or sadness or anything that doesn’t make them laugh. Just know it is because of one of the two reasons above. I am sure of this. You wouldn’t surround yourself with people who didn’t truly love you, nor would anyone who knew you be able to do anything but…I just know that.
      So there is a novel back….and I love novels, btw…especially from you. 🙂 You are such a gift, and your writing is a gift. There is no question that you are helping people, affecting them, and most definitely inspiring them to see beyond the darkness and extract the beauty in all of it…You are most certainly doing all of those things to/for me.

      The hugest hug to you…I’m effing coming to Canada, I mean fuck, we all want to head North for the next 3 years anyway, maybe I’ll be one that actually does it!!!

      Liked by 2 people

      • Wow. I barely know what to say in response to all of this because I am just so touched. Thank you. I mean, truly, thank you. My friends are incredibly kind and beautiful people, and you have made me realize it is ok if they just can’t handle my dark parts. I know they still love me, and I love the absolute hell out of them. You and I are blog BFF’s, but for the record, I consider you my friend in my real world also. Not that my blog isn’t real, or that I’m not real (I SWEAR I AM), but you know what the hell I mean!! We have become fast and furious friends, and I am just so goddamn happy our paths have crossed. My mind is still trying to process the similarities between us and the fact that there is someone out there who is so much like me. And Brooke, it means everything to me that my blog has affected you the way it has. It really does all come from the heart, and despite my potty mouth, I have a pretty damn big one. As do you. You and your words have had a huge impact on me, and have inspired me ways I can’t explain. So whatever I am to you, know you are the same to me.

        Since that nitwit is running your country into the ground I really think you should come for a visit north and hang with some Canadians. Even if only temporarily, we will help get your mind of things and show you
        what fun really is!

        Ps…your friend, Jill. That takes strength and trust and I admire her for her straight-up honesty.

        Huge hug, my friend!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Oh, I’m so glad you took us out of the blog bubble!! I’m coming, I’m coming!! Just as soon as I can get my financial mess less so, I sooo want to meet in person and fun sounds fabulous right about now. I meant every word I wrote and really do completely light up from the inside out when I see your name pop up, whether it’s a blog post or a comment, your Words are like milk and honey on a cold night (maybe with a tiny bit of rum for good measure). The biggest hug to you as you end your day… and if you haven’t noticed, fuck is my favorite word… two peas in a pod, weare!

        Liked by 1 person

      • HA! I did kind of notice. Two peas in a pod indeed.

        If you ever need to chat or just want to say hi, you know how to get in touch with me. I am always here. Enjoy the rest of your night! 😘

        Like

  5. You’ve found that sweet spot Natalie. Leading your readers to a place where they can relate; while viewing the painful, beautiful, convoluted wreak of our lives from the safety of their carefully-crafted armchairs.

    I’m envious of your position so much further up the path. You’ve warned us that the way is not lightly tread, that the blood and tears will sometimes fall on abandoned ground. That it’s lonely, baffling and painful. But still, this destination your moving towards…

    It looks glorious.

    Thank you for being a beacon to those of us following behind.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Again, as I said to our brilliant ‘dreamer’ above, completely baffled that you don’t see that your writing does the same thing…you are a beacon to all of us on this crazy path- often vacillating between deciding it’s too much work to climb back out of the rabbit hole, or fighting our way through it, extracting the gifts. I think you, like most of us, expose ourselves and share our experiences with the hopes of giving someone comfort and reassurance that they will get through it, too. This is what your writing does for me, Gabe. You need to to know that.
      Thanks for your kind words…I needed to hear them today…

      Liked by 1 person

  6. ok, once again. crying…after laughing, and ending feeling so warm and fuzzy and loved…I don’t know if I have words to do this justice, and I definitely don’t know where to start. So, I’ll start here. I feel the exact same way, exactly…of course I do. I think you are my Canadian reflection. I think it’s so crazy that you don’t see how honest your writing is, even if you don’t expose your darkest parts all of the time. What you wrote about a couple of weeks ago, about going to that dark place, made my cry…like tears streaming, precisely because it was so honest and heartfelt and so fucking painful for me to read- a) because it breaks my heart to think of you sad or hurting (even if I only know you except for as my blog bff), and b) because I have been there, I AM there, and you made me feel it. So, this is kind of the crux of what I’m trying to say: The reason why you hear only crickets, is because it just makes so many people uncomfortable, not just because they don’t want to feel sad, but because they don’t want to think of their beautiful, kind, brilliant friend, who I’m quite sure makes everyone’s day brighter and better, sad. Read my friend, Jill’s, comment. She is the perfect example, and I LOVE that she was honest and brave enough to share it with me. She isn’t sad right now and doesn’t want to read about sad and doesn’t want to revisit when she was sad. I don’t blame her. I don’t think when I get back to happy, I will be able to read sad for awhile either. But I also know how that feels to not hear any reaction from people you care about most when you share your darkness or sadness or anything that doesn’t make them laugh. Just know it is because of one of the two reasons above. I am sure of this. You wouldn’t surround yourself with people who didn’t truly love you, nor would anyone who knew you be able to do anything but…I just know that.
    So there is a novel back….and I love novels, btw…especially from you. 🙂 You are such a gift, and your writing is a gift. There is no question that you are helping people, affecting them, and most definitely inspiring them to see beyond the darkness and extract the beauty in all of it…You are most certainly doing all of those things to/for me.

    The hugest hug to you…I’m effing coming to Canada, I mean fuck, we all want to head North for the next 3 years anyway, maybe I’ll be one that actually does it!!!

    Like

  7. Holy shit, it’s like a venn diagram of depression with you & I on both sides and this post in the middle. To say I relate to this would be an understatement: I live this.
    It’s a little ironic that by praising you I’m doing exactly what the people in the post do, but it’s the truth. If your truth is sadness, then embrace it. A fake smile is worse than no smile at all. You should never pretend to be something you’re not.
    It can be tricky finding the line between accepting depression and revelling in it (hell I’m still looking) but such is the struggle.
    I’m so glad I finally got around to checking your blog out thoroughly- I’m only on the first post and I’m already hooked!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I started writing again in January because I had my heart broken on a level I didn’t know was possible, followed by a series of devastating events (two being talked about in “the accident” and “The fight or Last fight, can’t remember”). I had to start writing, I had absolutely no other outlet, had moved to another state for someone who ‘changed his mind’. I knew no one but him and was stuck in a lease for 6 months and also hoping we would work through it. We didn’t. Anyway, long answer to your question, but the blogs about the Congo and Ghana were just telling about my experiences in fascinating places. “a gypsy’s tale is my story of getting myself back after almost completely losing myself…I so love you found my blog and are enjoying it so much. This is why i love this community…very thoughtful, engaged, passionate people interested in learning and growing through others’ writing. Thank you again for being so attentive and thoughtful…

    Like

    • I’m glad you can relate, but kind of wish you didn’t at the same time, at least not the ‘needing to bleed’ part. Your writing tells me that you do, though, and I so love your courage and honesty. And we are all blessed that you were given a gift to ‘bleed’ and eloquently and gracefully as you do.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Brooke, Brooke, Brooke, Brooke. Your writing humbles and inspires me. Do not EVER fucking apologize for being YOU – wherever you are on this journey we call life is exactly where YOU are at and if people “don’t like it” F, them. If there is one thing that I’ve struggled with as a writer and speaker is being authentic – how much can I actually put out there. What I realized after dealing with this struggle over the last year is that, in fact, I am writing for me. I writing because it is cathartic and I want a witness so I push “Publish.” Every time I do that I get people sending me emails back thanking me for my rawness. When I try to be more “buttoned up” so to speak, crickets.

    So be you. Be authentically you. Be raw. Be real.

    Quite honestly, I don’t think you could be any other way!

    Love and light to you!

    Jen

    Like

  10. This post of yours has the pain, the passion and the profound thoughts that has been disturbing and at the same time keeping you in a state of in-equilibrium.

    In fact we all go through this part in our life that is challenging and never easy to navigate through these fluctuating and frustrating phases of life. One need to have the power and the gumption to collate all these scattered thoughts and express it in a manner that can tell the poignant story of our real experience and state of mind. You have done so brilliantly through this post. We all stand at a crossroad in our life and we look at the horizon and start wandering about the vagaries of life and the way it is sometime presented to us and we get flabbergasted and remain frozen in our thoughts, not knowing the way out.

    Writing has always been a wonderful source of liberation and inspiration and that can keep us at bay from the emotional pain and mental agony we confront in our life. Writing has power to empower us and make us feel good about us and the means to express our feelings and deeply bruised thoughts us a liberated soul. Writing for the sheer joy of writing!!!

    This post has captured everything, the finer nuances that one goes through during this period and the way you have put it provides the inspiration to many others who are going through this turbulence in thoughts and life to express out and do so with freely and fearlessly . You have written so beautifully it can only touch our heart and thanks for sharing with us such powerful thoughts that comes right from the kernel of heart.

    Wishing you a wonderful time ahead!!!
    😀

    Like

    • What a beautiful, thoughtful, humbling comment, Nihar. I wish I had the words to do it justice with my response. Writing does bring me so much joy, even if it is most times a painful process, at least it is right now. But I find moments of humor to share, and always try to offer a perspective or harness a perspective of the gift in all of the pain and heartbreak. When I hear that what I write touches people or inspires them or comforts them or just makes them feel, it fills in the cracks and helps me remember that ‘you’ are out there, that I’m not alone in this, and that I’m hopefully reminding all of you of that, too.
      So, thank you, for your courage and compassion and humanity. I feel so blessed to be exposed to people like you.
      Wishing you all the joy, love and peace that you most definitely bring to others.

      Liked by 1 person

      • So well put it Brooke, writing is so much joy even if it is most times a painful process. Perhaps we all release our buildup stress and we get relieved from all our suppressed pain through this wonderful engagement with writing. We all need a purpose in life and we all need to be meaningfully engaged to lead a life full of joy and life we are unraveling ourselves almost on a daily basis, with so much pace in today’s life and with so much happenings around us we are badly lost in wilderness and we quickly get caught in the cacophony.
        We all need that space, the moment of humor to share and a moment of reflection to care…offering new perspective and engaging in building new perspectives is what makes this community and conversations here so much special we all crave for that space to be inspired and to be motivated in doing what we love to do.

        Yes, when our write-up touches people’s life and we are though in a very small way able to change their life and are able to contribute towards a better society makes us feel more gratifying in what we have set to do and we get the avenue that we love to venture and make a difference in so many others life…
        You have so much passion in your profound thoughts that is beautifully reflecting across your posts making us all a passionate reader.
        Have a lovely Sunday.
        😀

        Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s