First, I’d like to thank my dear friend, Anu, for introducing me to this forum. Anu is the warmest and gentlest person I know, and I am positive that the people and posts on this site will bring me the same joy that it brings Anu.

My name is Jody, and my truth is that I am a mother, daughter, and retired Language Arts teacher. My mom used to call me her “iron butterfly” because I am strong and tough, but equally fragile and delicate. I tend to think in “black and white”, but as I age, rivulets of colour bleed into the gray-scale canvas that is my mind. More often than not, the colours blend into hues and tints with no known names.

At that moment, I become a unique individual, searching for answers and enlightenment. Decidedly, I am an “empath”. I deeply feel. I intensely care. I passionately hurt. I undisputedly care. I emphatically love. When you’re happy, I’m genuinely content. When you’re unhappy, I’m authentically hopeless. Whether melancholy or cheerful, your state of mind becomes an oddly personal experience for me. And, it doesn’t matter if you’re a stranger, a friend or a family. Not only do I have to deal with my mighty emotions, but I also have to deal with everyone else’s, too! You might say that I’m an “emotional sponge” and I would wholeheartedly agree.

It’s hard being an “empath”. Sometimes I am so very grateful to be this way, but other times, I am miserable. Joyful emotions are truly to be celebrated, but anything dark and gloomy is a hurdle for me to hear, absorb, digest, and move on from. 

I like that I am sensitive, but maybe it is extreme. I like that I am compassionate, but does everyone deserve compassion? I like that I care so deeply, but do all heartfelt causes warrant an emotional collapse? For example, the ads looking to raise money for animals are an all-out war on my gentle brain. “Stop filming”, I yell at the screen. “Give the dog a warm blanket”!   

Sometimes, I think that I really do not fit in. As I get older, I measure relationships based on their potential to cause “too much drama”. These days, I’m too tired to invest in any relationship that does not quickly portend to be enduring. I spent my entire adult life with men that abused my sensitivities or dragged me down. I used to think I needed a man. Now, I can’t imagine ever marrying again. I am fluid, work in progress. I hope that some of the things I share will inspire and touch someone else. I hope I can quash some of my insecurities by sharing my stories and poetry.  Some of my writings have been buried for more than 30 years!  I am thankful to have this platform, which is encouraging me to share my gifts.  Thank you for reading.    

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