When I was a kid I was always told I was overly sensitive. Well, I couldn’t help that I was born that way. A coping mechanism I’ve learned from being a highly sensitive empath is to steer clear of news (TV and internet) and violent or highly emotional shows or movies. Empaths FEEL the pain and emotions of others and over time it had become too much to bear. I am not exactly sure when I stopped watching TV altogether or reading the news…it was a slow process. Over time I just began to feel the desire to NOT know about all of the bad stuff going on all around me. It just hurt too much. I couldn’t handle it.
I would hear a story about a dog or cat being burned alive or mutilated by some sicko, evil humans and I’d end up having to take migraine medicine from crying so much. In an instant I would go from a normal emotional state of mind to a depressed state of mind by something that had nothing to do with me.
I do scroll social media so I feel like I know some things that are going on in the world…however, I try to only follow “happy” pages, people, accounts, etc. Is this irresponsible? Probably so. But taking responsibility of protecting my heart has been a relief.
This morning I was looking at Instagram and a friend posted that she found her neighbors cat dead and frozen in her yard. She posted pictures she had taken of the cat when it was alive and healthy and playing in the grass and amongst some plants in the yard when it came over to visit her. He was wearing a collar with a purple heart shaped name tag with “LUCKY” inscribed on it. When I read that Lucky died outside due to her neighbors neglect, I began sobbing. Not just for this poor cat but for all of the cats and dogs freezing to death outside at this very moment while I am in my comfortable warm home. It is winter now and will be cold for several months. Do I stop looking at social media now too?
No. Isolating myself from the entire world is not the answer. Yes, there is so much pain and suffering going on at this very moment while I am typing and you are reading. But there are also beautiful things happening. The beauty makes me an emotional wreck sometimes too.
The key for me to remember is balance. Everything that happens is happening according to God’s plan. I think He allows suffering to make us understand and have gratitude for the beauty. Lucky is in Heaven right now where it is beautiful all of the time. He isn’t cold anymore and he is frolicking in the grass chasing bugs again. That thought gives me peace.
Thankful for all of it because both the good and the bad things make me feel alive. They make me realize life is so much more than my little cozy isolated world I create to protect myself and not feel anything. I am thankful to be an overly sensitive empath in a hard, cold, sometimes scary world, for it is also beautiful and I am lucky as well.
Please help spread awareness to bring pets indoors if at all possible or provide proper shelter when it’s freezing outside. RIP sweet kitty…you were loved by people who never even met you.
Stacey ~ iamalive
Photos courtesy @alesha2381 <3