A Friend Through The Storm

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Photo by Johannes Plenio on Pexels.com

Learning that one can survive and transform from situations that are painful and out of control is reassuring.

Sadness and happiness are not forever.

Living through them accompanies a learning experience where one can learn something unique about the self, or learn something about others. When going through the storm, the choice of how are we going to react to it will impact the storm itself. Good or bad experiences have the potential to teach us something, if one is willing to learn. There are experiences where nothing is learned from them. Perhaps one does not want to learn from them, or is willing to try it once again and expect something different in return.

I try to be a vessel of stability when someone I care about is going through the storm.

What makes me uncomfortable is that, sometimes, a vessel is all I can be.

I consider myself a person that has difficulty expressing warmth during times of struggle. I tend to be over-analytical and rationalize my feelings as much as possible. This makes to shut down and express myself a lot less when I am experiencing a bad moment, and I behave the same way when a friend is in a bad moment, too. When I am in that state of mind, I am not the best company to be around, or at least that is what I have experienced.

When a friend tells me that they are struggling with a problem or situation, I see it as a puzzle that I need to solve. I listen attentively to what they say about the situation as I start constructing the scenario. Then, I try to figure out possible outcomes, as I elaborate my answer to the puzzle. It is a unique thrill that I get when doing the latter. It is stimulating, and sometimes makes me anxious, too. It is all about solving the problem because I want to help my friend, and have the satisfaction that I was able to do it.

And I start talking.

I rationalized the situation.

Here is me feeling all excited because I solved the puzzle.

But my friend did not want a solution.

My friend just needed someone to be there for them.

I am starting to grasp the idea of what a friend is. For now, I feel that I need to be mindful and recognize that I do not have to provide solutions, nor solve puzzles. I just have to be there. Storms can be less intimidating when there is someone next to you. Being present with my friends is what I am working on today.

In friendship,

-E.

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