Many years ago, I used to feel depressed and anxious a lot of the time. I don't know exactly what happened to me or when, but I rarely have such feelings anymore. I have come into some kind of emotional balance that I didn't intentionally seek, but that I quite like. Because I usually do feel positive and "up" most of the time, whenever I experience feelings of sadness or anxiety for no reason, it seems strange, surprising, a little confusing, and not really me. My experiences of the last few years have confirmed that these feelings usually do belong to someone else. I seem to be able to sense when someone I care about is having a hard time. I'll feel sad or anxious, and someone close to me will let me know, sometimes a day or two later, that something is or was going on with them.
Today I was sitting in my office and I started to feel anxious for no logical reason. About a half an hour later, my friend came in and told me the sad story that she found out that there is no possibility of ever being with the person she has longed to be with for the last two years. We have talked many times about her love and longing, and I shared her hopes that something would finally work out so that she could be together with the complicated man whom she finds so fascinating. She is really devastated and there is nothing I can do to help. I could only offer that I wished I had a magic wand and could make it all turn out in a better way.
It seems to be an unavoidable hazard of finally finding love that one has to go through the state of longing first. If only there was some other way! Longing, even if it does finally result in a loving relationship, can be such a waste of valuable time, because one can spend hours dreaming and worrying about the future and what might or might not be, instead of living in the now. During my sad and lonely years, I frequently found myself in a state of longing. I remember this state so well - how painful it was - and I hope I never find myself feeling this way ever again. I think that longing is really one of the worst possible emotional states to be in. One "falls in love", hopes and wishes for union, imagines all the ways in which one is not good enough for the other, is afraid to say or do anything to indicate to the other the depth of the feelings for fear of rejection, and then sometimes rashly does say or do something to disclose one's feelings and, in the worst case, actually does get rejected. It is really awful to be rejected by someone. Men are expected to make the first move in relationships, so they must experience being rejected much more often than women. I don't know how men deal with being rejected.
My daughter says I should just be there for my friend when she needs to talk and, in a little while, I should start finding fault with my friend's unattainable man - that this will help her get over him. It sounds like a plan, and since I don't have any better ideas, I will try it.