I love my feelings.

Just a little while ago, I published “I hate my feelings.” Well, I’m going to look at the other side of my extreme emotions. I was born and created as a sensitive soul, so there are benefits. God doesn’t make mistakes. Satan twists what God has given us. So, without further ado, I am going to explain why I love my feelings.

I love my feelings because they help me to be sensitive to others. My heart hurts physically when I hear of tragedy. I love my feelings because they create my strange, zany sense of humor. My feelings help me write, compose, and create art. I am able to accept my tearful, emotional nature, and I am becoming able to gently laugh at myself for it. There’s something beautiful about being able to laugh at oneself. I love my feelings because they’re the sense of elation behind that first sip of a delicious smoothie. They’re the reason I can giggle, feel confident and unstoppable, and express myself. I’m just bursting with life and creative ideas. Those are my feelings at work. Contrary to what I would have thought just a few weeks ago, I wouldn’t trade my feelings for anything.

What a joy it is to feel everything so very deeply.

Living hopefully in the face of uncertainty (for lack of a better title)

My life, for a long while, has been plagued with uncertainty. I have felt aimless, directionless, a victim of fate. I admit to taking a defeatist, “it wasn’t my fault” attitude. Recently, however, I’ve been having some realizations as I travel through this unpredictable existence of mine. For once, I feel like I’m really grabbing life by the balls and refusing to play the role of the lost, helpless little child. And at the same time, I’ve been letting go of what I need to let go of. I’ve been having less inner freak-outs (which I used to have at least once a day). I don’t need to be the center of everyone’s world anymore. I refuse to lap up validation like a starving dog. What is most important is that I live life in line with my own values and beliefs. I see myself applying logic and objective reasoning to what used to cause such me such heartache. 

But of course, this doesn’t make me any less sensitive. In fact, I’m learning to love and appreciate my highly emotional side. It is a part of me that has been unhealthy for a long time, but I believe that now that I’m gaining control of it, it can be a blessing. I’m leaving the endless maze of my head and stepping out into the world for what feels like the first time. I’m more perceptive now that I’m becoming less self-absorbed. I have the capacity to listen to others now. I’m still going to mess up sometimes. There are going to be times where I slip back into my old doubts, my old inability to receive love, but I feel that for once I’m in control of my own life. 

Practically, I realize that relapse is a very probable part of my future. Before I die, I’m probably going to become depressed again. I expect to be manic again. But it just doesn’t scare me like it used to. Nothing is going to stop me from achieving, from believing, from living. I am going to live my life to the fullest, knowing that I’m never alone. I will always have family, friends, and the Lord, most importantly. I’m Abigail Johnson, damn it. I will ride these waves of life like a mothertrucking boss.

MBTI explained

The following post has been copied and pasted from Tumblr due to increasing popularity.

 

Forget everything you know about the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, because you’re probably wrong. Most people think it’s just about the four letters. A lot of bogus online tests have screwed up what people think about the MBTI. Enjoying solitary walks has nothing to do with being an introvert or an extravert (I’m an extravert; I love walking by myself.) Believing that a rational approach is best has nothing to do with having a T or F preference. There are many Feeling types incorrectly typed as Thinking types because they claim they’re not “mushy” and “melodramatic.” Being a Feeler has nothing to do with that at all. So, without further ado, I will try my best to convey my understanding of Jungian theory to you. 

There are eight cognitive functions: Extraverted sensing (Se), Introverted sensing (Si), Extraverted intuition (Ne), Introverted intuition (Ni), Extraverted feeling (Fe), Introverted feeling (Fi), Extraverted thinking (Te), and Introverted thinking (Ti). Your dominant function is the one you use most and are most comfortable with. Naturally, it’s going to match your energy preference—if you’re an introvert, your dominant function is going to be an introverted function. Next is the auxiliary function. This is the function used to balance out your dominant preference. If you’re an introvert, your auxiliary function is going to be extraverted. This is so because, in truth, nobody is entirely introvert or entirely extravert. Of course, we have preferences, but we cannot be 100 percent one or the other. You can’t take an introvert and shove her in a room for fifteen months with no human contact and expect her to come out feeling refreshed and energized. Furthermore, your auxiliary function is going to complement your dominant function. For instance, Thinking and Feeling functions are used to make decisions. Sensing and Intuition functions are used to collect information. You cannot have dominant Ne with auxiliary Si. If that were so, you’d always be observing and never making any decisions. If you had a Te-Fi combo, you’d always be making judgements and never stopping to take anything in. 
That was a lot to swallow at once, wasn’t it? Here, let me break it down into bullets for you. 
Summary:

  • There are eight functions, introverted and extraverted sensing, intuition, feeling, and thinking.
  • Your dominant function is your favorite/most used function. Introverts will have an introverted dominant function. Extraverts will have an extraverted dominant function.
  • Your auxiliary function balances your dominant function. It must be introverted if your dominant is extraverted, and vice versa.
  • Auxiliary functions will feature the opposite type (judging or data-collecting) of your dominant. Thinking and Feeling functions are judging functions; Sensing and Intuition are data-collecting functions. You cannot have dominant Fe and auxiliary Ti.

If you’re still unsure of what we’ve just covered, feel free to shoot me an ask and I’ll try explaining it differently.

Now, let’s move on to the tertiary function. This is your third-used function, and tends to emerge later in life. It doesn’t appear in your four-letter type. (If you haven’t noticed already, your dominant and auxiliary functions determine your four letters). Your tertiary is going to be the opposite of your auxiliary. If you’re an INFJ, your tertiary function is going to be Introverted thinking (Ti) because your auxiliary is Extraverted feeling (Fe). I like to think of it this way—your tertiary and auxiliary functions cannot both appear in your four-letter type. You can’t be a T and an F at the same time. You can’t be an N and an S at the same time. So when finding out your tertiary function, remember that it’s going to be the same as your auxiliary in that it’s either a judging function or a data-collecting function, and it’s going to be opposite of your auxiliary in that it’s extraverted in an extravert. If you’re an extravert, your tertiary function will be extraverted, like your dominant. It’s quite simple when you get the hang of it. Introverts will have their functions stack like this: dominant introverted, auxiliary extraverted, tertiary introverted, inferior extraverted. Extraverts are just the reverse. 
Summary:

  • If your auxiliary function is a judging function (T or F) your tertiary will also be T or F. 
  • If your dominant function is introverted, your tertiary will also be introverted. 

Lastly, your inferior function. This fourth function doesn’t usually develop until much later. Sometimes it can manifest itself in immature ways in younger individuals. It’s the function you’re not as comfortable with. If you have Intuition as an inferior, it can sometimes manifest itself not as coming up with creative possibilities (like healthy Intuition does), but generating lists and lists of horrible things that might go wrong. (Please note that dominant and auxiliary functions can also be used negatively quite often in less healthy individuals.) Your inferior function will be extraverted if your auxiliary is extraverted. Remember, all individuals have a Sensing, Intuition, Feeling, and Thinking function. Once you’ve figured out your dominant, auxiliary, and tertiary functions, you can find your inferior by looking at which of the four different function types you are missing in your functional stack. If your stack goes as Fe-Ni-Se (Extraverted feeling, Introverted intuition, Extraverted sensing) then your inferior is going to be a Thinking function, and introverted like your auxiliary, therefore being Ti (Introverted thinking). 
Summary:

  • Everybody has a T, F, N, and S function, but the dominant and auxiliary appear in your four-letter type.
  • Your inferior function will be introverted if your auxiliary is introverted. 
  • Overall, you have two introverted functions and two extraverted functions. 

Alright, so we’ve gotten that straight. The problem is, what about the J and P letters in the MBTI type? How do you explain that? Well, it’s quite simple, actually. Just because you have a dominant Judging function doesn’t mean you are a Judging type. An INFP, for example, leads with Introverted feeling (Fi), which is a Judging function, but is a Perceiving type. The reason INFPs are Perceiving types is because they show their Perceiving function to the outside world, which is Extraverted Intuition (Ne). Ne is a Perceiving function. If the Extraverted function in your dominant-auxiliary combo is a Thinking or Feeling (J) function, you’re a Judging type and will have a J in your four letters. Why? Because J types will project their decision-making outwards, whereas Perceiving types prefer to bend and mold based on the current environment, not projecting their ways out into the external. If your Extraverted function in your dominant-auxiliary combo is an Intuition or Sensing (P) function, you’re a Perceiving type and will have a P in your four letters. 
Summary:

  • If your Extraverted function in your dominant-auxiliary is Thinking or Feeling (Te or Fe) then you are a J type. T and F are both Judging functions.
  • If your Extraverted function in your dominant-auxiliary is a Sensing or Intuition (Se or Ne) then you are a P type. S and N are both Perceiving functions. 

Well, I’m gonna have to end this post here because it’s already quite lengthy. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask! I love discussing MBTI and Jungian theory more than anything else. Even if you don’t really care much about it, or if you think it’s all BS (which it actually isn’t), it’s still a fun thing to talk about! 

P.S. I’m sorry if I’ve gotten anything wrong here, or if anything is unclear. I have discovered all this through weeks and weeks of exploring the depths of the Internet for all this info. 

Present

I’m a sentimental packrat. I hang on to every single little thing that has any connection to my past–used ice cream cups from outings with friends, old napkins from fifth grade, and plastic bags from field trips I took years ago. Why? Why am I so obsessed with things that have already happened, specifically painful experiences?

I have trouble living in the present. I either dwell in my painful past, or in my romanticized future. And when I do live in the present, it’s usually in the context of the future. To me, focusing on hurts from years ago is a distraction from the hurts I currently live with. It makes me feel like I’ve gone somewhere. If anything ever gets horrible, I can always remember that it wasn’t as bad as it was before. The problem with this is that focusing on the past so much brings back all the pain and impairs my ability to function normally. The memories engulf me and trigger emotions, so I might as well be living in that awful time. It’s not a very good strategy. Neither is living in a romanticized future, because when I’m forced back to reality in the face of a painful circumstance, it feels as though I’ve come down from a high, of sorts. I already experience far too much of that, with my recurring descents into states of deep depression. 

I’m just going to leave the past be. I can’t afford more emotions to deal with. What happened happened. It has helped shape me into the person I am today, and for that, I am grateful. I need to let it be, let it scar over, stop poking at the wound. I am making a promise to myself to work on living in the present. 

Anger Reactions

People who are close enough to me have seen me angry, and most likely, they’ve seen me angry in different ways. I’m unpredictable; so I don’t react exactly the same way every time. I vary, just like everything else in my life. 

Reaction 1: Asshole Façade

This reaction is probably the most vicious of my anger reactions, and it’s usually anger stemming from fear or embarrassment. Screaming isn’t involved in this type of reaction. Usually, my eyes get a sharp, wild look in them, and I start smiling. Yes, smiling. It’s a cruel smile, meant to mask wounds. I become a cold jerk, seemingly emotionless. Despite apparent detachment from emotions, there are always extremely strong feelings brewing beneath the mask–fear and embarrassment, as I mentioned earlier. The Asshole Façade reflects uncertainty. Did that really happen? Was I really that stupid to not notice that? What will happen? What will they think? 

Reaction 2: Inward Knife

This is the most tearful reaction, and probably the most common in me. It’s definitely a hurt kind of anger reaction. You’ve hurt my feelings. I feel rejected or unwanted. I feel replaced. My first desire is to turn my metaphorical knife on whoever hurt me, but it turns out as a feeble stab, and ends up backfiring on myself before I get the chance to lash out. The Inward Knife usually manifests itself in copious tears and withdrawal. I retreat into myself, where I attempt to lick my wounds and vainly regain my composure. Loose blame floats around, and there’s some sort of mechanism within me that immediately attaches it to myself. When asked if I’m okay, I usually try my hardest to convince everyone that really I’m okay, or my anger reactions to transfers to the Asshole Façade immediately. (Inward Knife and Asshole Façade can sometimes occur at the same time.)

Reaction 3: Tornado

This is the by far the most frightening anger reaction, complete with throwing objects, full-blast screaming, and insults hurled every which way. I lose all rationale with the Tornado. Anything in my hand will most likely be chucked against the wall (throwing objects is my most common manifestation of the Tornado). There is no forethought. I am the most destructive while in the Tornado reaction. There have been times where I have destroyed things that I actually care about in this irrational state. I’ll blow my voice out and shout insults that I don’t mean. Emotionally, however, the Tornado is less hurtful than the Asshole Façade. Like I said, I lose intelligent thought when I’m storming, and therefore cannot craft the most insulting remarks. The best I can think of is usually “I hate you” and many swear words. With the Asshole Façade, I still have control over my thoughts, and can brew the cruelest insults. Thankfully, the Tornado reaction usually only occurs in the most extreme states of stress and fear. 

Reaction 4: Righteous Anger

I only display this reaction when I hear a statement that goes against one of my values. It’s calm (although it can escalate quickly), much like the Asshole Façade, but with half the viciousness and none of the arrogance. My eyebrows are a bit more furrowed, with a bit of a thoughtful appearance, and my eyes tend to be narrower, as opposed to the saucer-like eyes shown in the Asshole Façade. 

Poetry and Prose

I surprise everyone when I tell them I prefer writing prose over poetry. Typically, poetry is considered, well, more poetic. It’s prettier, preferred, much more romanticized. It’s not that I can’t write good poetry, it’s just that I feel a little more constrained while doing so. Yes, I know, it contradicts what most feel about writing. But even my fellow writing friends tell me I was born for prose. Things just seem to flow out of me better, you know? My favorite writing style is diary-like confessional prose with a dash of profanity for added honesty. 

I hate my feelings.

I hate my feelings. It sounds strange, coming from someone who went with so few for so many months, but I hate them. I hate how they seem to control me. I hate how strong and unstable they are. I wish feelings didn’t exist sometimes. I either go months without really any feelings at all, or I get such an abundance that it’s annoying, frustrating, and overwhelming. I can’t deal with it. I hate emotions. I would gladly trade my feelings for rationality and objectivity. As much as I love to be spontaneous and disorganized, I’m drawn to stable and secure types. I’m just not balanced enough. I’m not controlled. I’m just not realistic at all. 

There’s no taming me. Not even I can control myself. People assume I always like a loss of inhibition. As if it’s fun being consistently insane, speedy, out-of-control. Of course it can be fun sometimes. Of course it’s an advantage sometimes. But it’s really not. Euphoric doesn’t mean happy, I’ve realized. Happiness is controlled. Happiness knows when to stop; it’s rational. Euphoria isn’t. Euphoria will seduce you right off a cliff. Euphoria will change who you are. It will keep you up at night, eat away at your inhibitions and self-control, and make you do things that you regret later. Euphoria makes you angry, arrogant, irritated, and moody. It makes you dizzy. You can’t stop euphoria. It’s delectable, tantalizing, and destructive. 

I long for the middle ground between hopelessness and overconfidence. Between having no energy to move, and having enough energy to end the planet. Where is moderation?

Clean your rugs

I’m sorry, but Macklemore absolutely looks like an ice cream cone. Maybe butterscotch, or caramel, the little bars we got as children at the park. My favorite thing was always the spinning circle thing. The roundabout, wasn’t it? Actually, no, what am I saying, I liked the swings! I will never grow out of them, I swear, I’ll always have them in my heart. First off, Justin Timberlake is cereal. Certainly, you know, the Grape Nuts, the gross little gravels. Construction workers should really use them more, yes, I say. Do you like Lorde? I’ve really been listening to a lot of her stuff. But of course, I love listening to Titanium the most. Except when it’s too slow and calm for me, I get tired of it sometimes. Then I have to turn to Skrillex and chokecherry dance music and all that jazz. Gosh, I hate jazz music, it’s really not for me. It reminds me of elevators. They smell good, I must give them that. Take a big breath every time you get into an elevator, I swear, they’re wonderful! The other day I ate a cherry. It was sour and it made me feel very nauseous, probably because I found it on the ground. Remember that big Swine Flu outbreak back when I was in fourth grade? I started running around the classroom with hand sanitizer. Hey, you know, this morning and last night, I was running around my house to the Chicken Dance. What fun! My fingers really an’t type fast enough. Honesty, I can’t–oh wow, mind blip right there, what was I going to say? Something about cereal again? No, EDM, I listen to it a lot now. I think going clubbing might be fun, wouldn’t it? I’m only fifteen, so it looks like I can’t really go right now. Ugh, I’m listening to this EDM track again and I am so sick of it. There, now I’ve changed to Skrillex. That’s better. You know when words get caught in your mind, it’s like they’re clogging and you can’t get them out through your fingers? It’s all so much of a flow, go in a single file, please! They say to listen to music that reflects your soul, so I listen to Bangarang a lot. It’s very much wired. Hey look, I’ve learned to type! The other day my fingers were so energized that I couldn’t raven type normally, and everything was coming out very garbled. Gargled. Mangled. That’s such a gruesome word, gross! I should wear some sort of tie, that would be fun. What marbles? Fun Dip! I had Fun Dip in my room from Valentine’s Day years ago, and I Ate it. IT wasn’t bad, don’t worry, it was actually really good. Nothing like that awesome sugar stick!  Syrup can be very sticky, especially when it gets in your hair. Don’t get it there. Clean your rugs, all of you. Make sure to clean your rugs.

Forgiveness and other things

Ephesians 4:31-32 NIV

Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

I have a lot of people on my hate list, to be honest, and some for no really good reason. God (and others) has been calling me out on some stuff, actually, and I’m going to start listening. For example, I preach all about tolerance and acceptance, when I’m not really sure how accepting I really am. I lug around huge bags of unforgiveness–against previous bullies, teachers, and even loved ones. I just hate so much. And, if I let it, the hate creeps into how I see people different from me. Rarely do I act out my hatred; rather, I let it fester and churn inside me until I become hardened. 

The one person I hold the biggest grudge against is, in fact, myself. I tend to fling blame at myself readily and easily. Memories of stupid things I said in fifth grade frequently surface in my mind, causing me to become angry and anxious. I have a hard time letting go of these memories–one, because they seem to come bobbing to the top of my thoughts at the most unexpected times, and two, because I have a really weird need to cling to the painful past. I think it provides me with a sense of self. It provides an escape from current problems, just a way out, a distraction. It makes me feel valid, like I matter, which I think stems from a deep belief that my struggles are the only things that make me important.

Anyway, I’m working on forgiveness. And although it may not seem apparent, I’ve certainly made improvement since September. Many of you may remember my frequent blogs about my “love intolerance”, or inability to receive love or attention correctly because I felt so incredibly inadequate. I feel much less of that now. I can accept that people care about me. I don’t lie awake at night secretly believing that everyone is talking about me, that everyone is out to get me, that secretly I’m hated. It’s not like I never struggle with those thoughts anymore, but I’ve gotten control over them, mostly with God’s help. Sinking into His unconditional love has helped me receive love from other people. And I think that’s pretty awesome. Hopefully, using that same approach, I can trot further down the road of forgiveness. 

Cheers!

Parental Controls and Teenagers

Before I start off, I’m only discussing parental controls in regards to teenagers. I think it’s generally a good idea to put parental controls in place for children. You don’t want your eight-year-old watching porn, do you? (At least I sincerely hope you wouldn’t.) 

I’m talking about teenagers. If you’re that parent who thinks you can stop your teen from watching his or her favorite shows, or even porn, you’re wrong. Porn is everywhere. Although not all of us have sought it out, we’ve all stumbled upon it accidentally. There is literally no way to shelter your teenager from everything. Actually, there is–if you lock your teen in a dark room and only let them listen to Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star all day. So basically, no. You can’t do it. Almost half of high school students have already had sex, anyway. We know what it is. Most of us have seen it (whether firsthand, seeking it out, or accidentally stumbling upon it online). However, don’t be that stupid parent who assumes your teen has something to hide. Being online, most of the time, usually means social networking. The more you push at your teenager to tell you what she’s doing every second of the day, the more she’s going to hate you. Some even go so far as to rebel and do exactly what you’re telling her not to do.

Oh, but sex isn’t the only reason overly nervous parents try to shelter their “poor overexposed baby”! There’s the violence and thematic events. I get it, parents, but your teenager should be able to make his or her own decisions. Most of us know our limits. If we’re disturbed by something, we’ll stop watching it. I know I’m certainly able to make my own decisions, and I’ve willingly turned away from things that frighten me. I have no problem watching someone being murdered or tortured in a TV show, but I cannot watch a father yelling at his daughter. This doesn’t mean I’ve been “desensitized”, whatever the hell that means. I know the difference between reality and fiction. Of course if I saw somebody getting murdered or tortured in real life, I would react very differently. I’m not going to have nightmares. In fact, most of my nightmares come from my own past. If you’re trying to shelter your teen, chances are he or she has already seen things–things that might be even in a PG movie–that are more frightening than things in an R-rated film. 

And don’t even talk about language or teen drug and alcohol use. Get a grip. We’re in high school. We know what’s up better than you do. 

You know what I think is a good idea? Ask your teenager what really scares him or her. What would really be frightening to watch? You might be surprised. You know what frightens me to watch, besides what I mentioned earlier? Vomiting. Stillbirth. Not violence or sexual themes. Some teens may be frightened of these things, and it doesn’t make them any less of a person, or weak, it just means they’re afraid of different things. Overall, you need to let your teenager make his or her own decisions. Talk about fears together so you can be more accommodating with movie choices, instead of being a total asshole and blocking everything.

Thanks! 

-An angry 15-year-old