Tuesday, October 4, 2016

A Conversation with Sadness

Sadness sits on the couch, cocooned in a down comforter, her head barely peeping from the folds. She burrows deeper as I approach with two warm cups of tea in my hands, a peace offering. This isn't a common display of affection.

She and I have a strange relationship. Out of the five aspects, she is the one with whom I am most familiar and in some respects, I'm okay with that. Like a black cat, she is aloof and mysterious. I respect her need for distance and accept her melancholy attitudes, most of the time. But we don't chat. We often just sit together is silence, both under that big, comfy blanket when the weight of all we aren't gets too heavy to face.

Sometimes our hermitage is enlightening. I hear more and learn much, but it's when she forces me to stay and remain hidden that our camaraderie is shattered. I struggle to break free. I'm done with the introspection, the locked doors and silence. I want to go out into the sunshine, have some time with Joy, but Sadness isn't trusting.

She teams up with Fear and keeps me stuck. When they're at their strongest is when I'm at my weakest, and then depression comes. They think they are protecting me but I rail against them, pleading with Anger to do something. I usually just end up yelling at Sadness, causing her to retreat further, causing me to become more withdrawn and disconnected from her true intentions. A cup of tea isn't enough to cover the multitude of sins between us, but it's a start.

I place her cup on a navy steam trunk and lift my own to my lips. The liquid sunshine bolsters my nerves. I turn and set the cup down behind me, then breathe in a deep breath. "How are you today?" I mutter.

She blinks. Not used to a calm tone, I assume. "I'm afraid," she whispers, her voice cracking.

I look to the bedroom where Fear broods. "What are you afraid of?"


Now it's my turn to blink. "Wh-what? Why?"

"You're going to get rid of me." I furrow my brow in response, speechless. "I heard the others talking. You are going to get rid of us so you can create. You don't like us, and you hate me."

How did she... Oh right. She's in my head. "Well..." I begin, but stumble over her spoken truth. Instead, I reach around for the comfort of my tea. My original goal behind these "interviews" was a simple dissection. Figure out how each aspect works and then exile them to a walkabout. Goodbye, good luck and good riddance. Guilt makes my throat tighten. "You aren't wrong," I confess.

"I can be useful," she says, emerging from her cave. "I can help."

"How?" I scoff.

"I can..." her voice falls off a cliff, abruptly shut up. She glances to the bedroom. "I know it's not much and maybe it won't make a difference..." Her eyes lower to her lap and she whispers, as if to herself, "I'm never really good at talking." Her gaze finds my own. She can tell I'm growing impatient. "Myths."

"Myths?" What is she talking about?

"I- It's more of a list of rules... like a religion. We each have them."


"Yes. I could tell you mine." She looks over to the mug, quickly snatching it up and taking a whiff.

Intrigued, I set my own mug aside. "Go on."

A rare smile stretches the corner of Sadness's mouth. "Well--"

The bedroom door flies open and we both turn to see Fear emerge in a frenzy, near hyperventilating. "What do you think you're doing!?"

Come back tomorrow as the conversations continue.


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