- Not taking pleasure in something you normally enjoy a lot.
- No feeling with something that you can normally get quite excited about.
- Getting extremely freaked out over trivialities.
- Cry when you start talking.
- Just pretend nothing is happening.
- Going down a bag of chips, while at another time you can’t get a bite down your throat for hours.
- It feels strange that the world just goes on and on.
A rollercoaster of emotions often comes from an enormous feeling of powerlessness over something that has happened. The feeling that things are completely slipping through your fingers and you just don’t remember. There is an emotional heaviness that you may not know about yourself.
Strong emotions often come from grief, a serious accident, a divorce (especially if it is sudden for you), the sudden loss of a job, a miscarriage, a street incident such as a robbery, and so on.
Usually the basis is that you are very sad because of the event. You often don’t have good control of your emotions and many people feel shame and discomfort about that. Other people still understand your tears, but often they don’t want the period to last too long or they are shocked by the intensity of your emotions. They often don’t understand that exaggerated anger is also an expression of sadness. You often don’t understand yourself, let alone that someone else understands you.
Intense sadness that lasts a little longer often feels lonely. That’s because someone else doesn’t feel it, or because the process never goes the same as someone else. Sadness can run in all kinds of phases or reveal itself in different ways. There are nice theories about it, but often grief goes from hot to here and it slowly becomes less. When the time is right. If you are open to it.
Why am I writing this?
I haven’t been myself the last few weeks either.
There is a lot of sadness, there are a lot of emotions.
I’m not myself and to be honest that annoys me.
My grief is coming in stages right now. Due to a little more bad news and sometimes there is even a positive message to which we react almost euphorically.
The loyal newsletter readers already know: my husband has cancer. We have known that for 3 months and the situation is quite serious. Everyone understands that this is a difficult and uncertain time for us. Everything revolves around conversations with doctors, results, examinations, treatments and operations. The sadness manifests itself in distraught, very emotional days after a bad result and then tough to continue. At least I think so.
Emotions with you due to illness of the partner
I wanted to be calm, positive and strong. Because my husband is sick. Not me. I’m supposed to be strong. I ignored the fact that I had a dormant and sometimes more intense headache almost every day. “Oh well, headaches are just my weak spot”, I waved it away.
The doctor’s assistant put me in my seat as she put a B12 shot in my gluteal muscle. Jeez, that was painful. Normally I hardly felt that, did I? She immediately said, “The tension is in your body even though you think you are calm.” Something slowly crumbled. Grief manifests itself at the strangest times.
My husband and I have been together for a long time. Our expectations for the future have now suddenly been disrupted. When you hear that your partner has a 50% chance of still being there in five years, it is quite a shock. Five years seems a long way off when you talk about plans for work or a vacation. But with a disease like cancer, five years sounds awfully close. Even though we understand that those five years are only a benchmark for medical science and we shouldn’t take five years so literally. Suddenly, there is no longer anything to hold onto for a happy future together. Even though we don’t really know what’s going to happen yet.
My grief is therefore not so strange in itself, but the emotional rollercoaster that came with it completely overwhelmed me. It feels strange that one minute I’m working wonderfully and the next moment I can’t bring myself to do it at all. At a difficult moment I thought I would make myself happy with a visit to the bookstore. That feels like a little kid in the toy store to me. But I was walking around there now and could only think: “What am I doing here??”
Where I used to get excited about a political debate, it hardly bothers me now. But if someone makes a wrong comment, then I get completely out of control and my emotions are out of control. We can lie on the couch for hours to watch a Scandinavian thriller, but the energy to pack up and go to our holiday home is completely missing. From strong to very sad, from much too angry about nothing to pure listlessness.
Why are you so upset?
It’s almost always because it’s a shocking event that comes out of nowhere. Or of which you could not properly estimate what it would do to you, because it is so intense (for example, the death of a loved one after illness).
The powerlessness you feel makes you immediately feel that you have lost control. You realize that you are not always in control of your life. Something has completely caught you off guard. You can get confused by this.
Your body reacts with tension, ready to take action. That can cause physical complaints. You probably sleep worse and that makes emotions more intense. Your brain and body are disrupted by the intense event.
How do you deal with strong emotions?
It can always be worse. If you are very sad and completely out of sorts, you may judge yourself for thinking of someone who is going through much worse things. Then guilt kicks in. Do not do that. Your emotions can be there too. Something has happened that has left you in a state of disarray and a great sadness is playing tricks on you. Even if you think you’re someone who has everything under control, sometimes you just aren’t. You don’t have to think for others for a while (what will they think of me), you can be sad.
I agree with the people who say you should keep those emotions going. Let the tears come. If you show few emotions, it will sink in and that is not healthy anyway. The process often takes much longer and leads to health problems.
But allowing emotions sometimes also means that you are not completely in control. That other people may not know how to treat you. That makes it uncomfortable, because you can’t just postpone your emotions until you’re alone. At least I can’t. Emotions such as anger or being listless are especially difficult emotions for others to deal with. Someone else can’t always do something for you, but they can be there. And try not to involve yourself.
Despite great sadness and intense emotions, it is still good to do something now and then. Think of sports or walking, maybe already working for an hour, or meeting someone. The first period you may just want to sit in your own bubble and have nothing to do with anyone. That’s fine too, as long as you don’t get hung up on it. Because talking and fresh air is good to literally and figuratively give you some air again. Sleeping is also very important. By sleeping you give your head and body rest.
Routines help you regain control of the situation. You often hear someone say that the dog ensures that they have to go outside again 3 or 4 times a day. The children have to go to school. You must provide the evening meal. If at some point you pick up this kind of routine again and expand it a little more, it gives you something to hold on to. Like you’re taking control again.
Above all, be kind to yourself. Accept that you are very upset, then things will get better faster. You can explain it to others, but know that it’s difficult for them to understand if they don’t feel the emotion as intensely themselves. Or because they themselves are just in a different emotion.
It was a traumatic event for you, but it doesn’t have to be traumatic.
Your feelings may be fully there, but make sure you remain aware of yourself and your emotions. Don’t let the emotions get to you. So try to look at your own emotions from time to time as an outsider and regularly ask yourself: what do I need right now to feel better? This helps to regulate emotions better and better. Don’t look back too much, but look where you want to go.
Often the pain or sadness about a bad event never completely passes. Because it is (was) too big and too intense. So you don’t have to force it. But it’s going to take place. Have faith that you can find a way. If you don’t succeed, it can cause a lot of stress complaints for a long time and that is not good for your health. Always seek professional help if you find it difficult to process something that has happened.
Together with Vanessa I am the owner of this website Good food Healthy living. I myself struggled with my health and weight for a while and I was looking for more information. Actually, this website started as a great search for what could be right for me. How could I feel healthier and fitter? I’ve been reading a lot about this. Vanessa already knew a lot about nutrition and often told me about it. We thought it was fun to share, that’s why we started this blog. This website is our passion. All information is supplementary, not a replacement for regular medicine!