All posts tagged: sadness

Swallowing Sadness

When I was a kid, I couldn’t swallow tablets. Not only could I not swallow them, I had an absolute, throat-constricting fear of them. So, the summer when I developed mumps was a particularly painful summer for both me and my family. My nightly treatment was a war zone: there was me, a stubborn five-year-old with swollen cheeks, distraught with fear at the idea of consuming something I could not chew; my worried mother begging me to try again as I spat out the pill for the fifth time; my frustrated father commanding she hold my nose and force it down. And then there was my gentle Grandpa who coaxed me from the chaos and took me to the kitchen. He patiently diced the miniscule tablet into microscopic pieces, and replaced my water glass with an apple raspberry juicebox. Then he sat and stroked my back as I shook and sobbed and swallowed until the tablet was gone. I’m not entirely sure if that memory is mine, or whether it was planted into my mind …

On Happiness

8 in 10 people would describe me as “happy”. That’s what I learnt when I was 14. During a Personal Development day at school, we split into groups of 10 and were asked to write down one nice thing about everyone else in the group. At the end of the day, we each received an envelope of compliments, and 80% of mine read some variation of the statement “You’re always so happy! xoxox” I went home that day awfully flattered, (I guess that was the point of the exercise), and never really thought much about it. That is until yesterday, when I found this envelope tucked away in one of my old diaries. I re-read all these compliments, and found myself sitting on the floor of my bedroom thoroughly analysing what exactly it was about me that made my peers believe I was perpetually happy. Was it just an easy way of saying “I don’t really know you”? Was it because I was a giant dork who just really loved school? Or was it because …