The Other 4-Letter Word That We Can’t Let Go Of!

Benjamin Mee: What I figured out is that when you love somebody that much, that hard, that long, you can never get away from them, no matter where you go. And that only comes once in a lifetime. Just can’t get a…
[he clenches his fist as if trying to open a handle on a door, imitating Walter Ferris]
Benjamin Mee: …handle on it.
[Kelly smiles]
Benjamin Mee: I cannot let go.

Dialogues from “We Bought The Zoo” – the protagonist is Benjamin Mee played by Matt Damon (one of my all time favourite actors. No one else could have played the eponymous role of Jason Bourne.)

You know, I have a confession to make. I cry when I see movies. I let the dialogues and the moment touch me, somewhere deep inside. I somehow extrapolate what they’re feeling and I imagine myself and how I feel or felt at vulnerable times in my life. It makes me cry. Even rom-coms with great predictable ‘happily ever after’ endings make me cry. I’ve often wondered why.

I used to think I was (and still am) an emotional fool. Emotion and fool go together see, and so I’ve never bothered to question it. Pause. Just think about it. Whoever coined it must have thought that to wear your heart on your sleeve, feel, show that you feel, is actually detrimental to health LOL. And so, if you’re emotional, ergo, you’re a fool. Oh well, whatever! But today, it’s the reverse. If you’re not emotional you’re not a fool. Or so the world’s behavioural psychologists and researchers would have us believe. Anyway, forgive me the digression. The point is, yes, I cry, I feel miserable, and while I’m not a manic depressive, I can tell you with a great degree of assurance that when I’m emotional, I operate at heightened creative levels. I write with more depth, more feeling, more meaning. Or so I believe. When I revisit some of my earlier writing, I find that my style has changed, perhaps and somehow I’m unable to create that same degree of intensity. I may have lost my flow. I don’t really know, what it is, but which is why, I started putting up my earlier writings to not just share with you, but also to serve as a reminder to me that it’s okay to feel pain. It’s not necessary that one needs to bathe in pain everytime one wants to be creative, or be slightly edgy or veer on the precipice of insanity like Van Gogh to produce works of sheer genius. But one needs to have empathy, sympathy, and emotion.

You’ll agree with me when I say we’re all alone. We, each of us, you,you, you and I are all alone. We find companions if we’re lucky, to share the journey of our ephemeral lives on this planet. And during our lifetime, we go through myriad experiences, but the ones that help us grow and evolve and learn is the pain, the failure, the rejection, the fear, the sadness, the insecurity among a whole plethora of emotional turmoil, that stymie us as we seek to soothe our wounded souls. And our big deep gaping wounds are healed (if we’re lucky, or sometimes like yours truly, some wounds heal but the scars run so deep that they serve to remind me, for eternity what the wound was all about, forever accursed to remember) when we find that we’re not alone in our pain, our grief, our sadness. That there are others in whose pain we find healing to our gashes and abrasions and fractures and the assurance that we’re not alone after all. And thus a connection is formed and a bond is birthed.


We’re wired to tune in to pain. We’re not meant to be unhappy, no, am not saying that. In fact the very opposite, as our spiritual masters would have us believe. It is my belief however, that it is when we swim through the river of pain that we can truly enjoy the lightness of being and revel in having found (however temporarily) the embankment of joy. 

And if you haven’t felt pain lately or if, in your pain, you haven’t been desperately seeking someone who can look you in the eye and say honestly, “I don’t know how to ease your pain, and I don’t know what to say, but I’ve been there, so I know what it means”, then you’re being untruthful. If you haven’t felt cleansed after you’ve let your tears cause a tsunami of emotion, if you haven’t felt relief and sometimes reborn, rejuvenated and clear as the cloudless blue sky after a storm, then you’re just lying. But that’s okay.
Because we’re all emotional fools, it’s just that we’re conditioned not to be found out . But you know what? I’d rather be a fool any day. Come on, get a handle on it and let go :).


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