Sadness and Good Things

“[Sadness is] happy for deep people.” – Dr. Who

Yes. Yes it is. When I am sad, whether it’s just a little sad or even when I’m bawling my eyes out sad, I feel so good (isn’t this crazy?!?). Why? Why am I happy when I’m so sad?

It’s simple: when I’m sad, specifically when I allow myself to be sad, I feel alive. I feel so perfectly myself. I feel comfortable because I’m not pretending to be something I’m not.

I mentioned before that I feel good when I cry and it’s because when I cry, I’m being honest. It’s not because being sad is where it’s at and everyone should be sad and depressed and think dark thoughts and have low self-esteem and be a mush of a person. No. It’s because when I cry, or accept my feelings of sadness, I am being real. This being real makes me feel alive rather than like a hollow frame. I feel like a being. A human.

When I accept how I feel (however I feel, it isn’t always sadness), I am the most creative. The best example I can think of is Van Gogh, probably because we talked about him in class today (and I nearly started crying because Dr. Who). Van Gogh was depressed for most, if not all of his career. Yet his work is gorgeous! He expressed his feelings through his art and it paid off (although he never got to see how). How often is it that the artist who is most truly in touch with their feelings creates the best art?

Piggybacking off of that, when I’m sad I feel the most inspired. I have the most to say on things because when I get sad, I get introspective and I go deep. I tend to sort of forget my surroundings and focus in on certain things-actually, it’s more like the opposite of that. Rather than honing in on random details, I see more of the bigger picture and random details stand out in contrast to their surroundings.

Another weird aspect of this is that I can feel sad and happy all at the same time. While the sadness is like a deep underlying emotional theme, it seems to intensify my other emotions, such as feeling good (not quite happiness, but not quite joy either-simply, good). Like right now, I’m still sad over some things that have happened recently and things that are not-so-recent in my life yet I have never felt better. Part of this is due to accepting how I feel, not letting it be the boss of me (simply feeling it and expressing it), the rest is due to seeing what I can of the blessings God has been giving me.

I say “what I can” because I seem to be under a waterfall right now. This has less to do with where I am in life/what’s going on (life is not fantastic) and more to do with how I’m looking at my life right now (for instance, I’m happy I got to see Van Gogh’s Starry Night today in class). When you’re under a waterfall, you can’t see everything. You can only see what is directly in front of you. Because of this, I know I am missing other things that are going on in my life right now, things that can be good or bad. Examples of this abound. Like when I realized the other day that I have been so wrapped up in how I feel that I haven’t been fully present with some of my friends and been happy or sad for/with them.

And we know that [a]God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” -Romans 8:28 (NASB)

I hope the rest of your day is good, whether sad or no.

-Jessa Winter

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