perks of being sensitive

After recently (and really, throughout my whole life) having been criticized for being “too sensitive,” feeling “too much,” and letting emotions get to me, I’ve gotten to a point where people’s words have stuck to me and become to sound like my own. Without thinking, I’ve started to beat myself up for being the way I am, for caring, when everyone says I just shouldn’t. Suck it up, Anna, and stop being so sensitive. Why do you let yourself react and feel? The sad part is, I didn’t realize I was doing this until I came across this quote:

I used to dislike being sensitive. I thought it made me weak. But take away that single trait, and you take away the very essence of who I am. You take away my conscience, my ability to empathize, my intuition, my creativity, my deep appreciation of the little things, my vivid inner life, my keen awareness to others pain and my passion for it all.

Even if everyone around me looks down on my sensitivity, in reality, it’s one of my greatest strengths. And how wonderfully validating that is to hear. 🙂

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under the apple tree

                            apple-tree-print

This struck me very deeply.

“Life will break you. Nobody can protect you from that, and living alone won’t either, for solitude will also break you with its yearning. You have to love. You have to feel. It is the reason you are here on earth. You are here to risk your heart. You are here to be swallowed up. And when it happens that you are broken, or betrayed, or left, or hurt, or death brushes near, let yourself sit by an apple tree and listen to the apples falling all around you in heaps, wasting their sweetness. Tell yourself you tasted as many as you could.”

Louise Erdrich, The Painted Drum LP