By Jessica Bills
Did you know I (hesitantly) loooooveeee you? Well it seems like we rarely are on the same page. And it kind of hurts me every time I try to open up to you. But I mean, you’re great...
Hmmm. Let’s be honest. You’re super intimidating. Because that’s the thing, your honesty isn’t naturally filtered through empathy like mine is. Example. It took me 5 months to work up the courage to be “that” blunt.
We’re feelers. You’re thinkers.
We are the Annas. You’re the Elsas.
We are the Frodos. You’re the Gandalfs.
We’re Luke Skywalker. You’re Han Solo.
We’re Ron Weasly. You’re Harry fricking Potter.
And what that list communicates to me is we need each other. But I think we need to meet each other halfway. To help you meet me, to help me meet you, we will have to go into how I feel. So bear with me.
There’s a seemingly infinite moments where insecurities strike me, and block our friendship deepening, because I feel like you value being right over how I feel. Words said harshly are not remembered. How I feel, however, is forever seared into my memory.
My dad is a thinker. He is analytical. I am emotional. And almost every time we have a conversation over 10 minutes it is like pulling the largest piece of taffy apart across the continental United States of America. I could say my main point is 15 different ways, upside down, in the original Hebrew, and we will STILL have a disconnect. Until I remember, I’m translating everything he says through my feels.
A lot of times it seems easier to be you. I sometimes even try to articulate my thoughts through the phrase “I think” instead of my natural “I feel.” Because it FEELS frivolous. Even in college when Meyers Briggs is all the rage. It felt weak to be a feeler. It felt like our feelings are fickle. With each flip of a coin my feelings change. But your thoughts are solid like the Ten Commandments. And that’s the thing I have to remember about you too. You’re not intimidating. Just because you THINK something doesn’t mean it’s truth. Doesn’t mean it’s everything. It’s fickle too. You’re just so confident with how you talk about your thoughts.
What we both need to remember is I’m not to be looked down upon because I’m a feeler.
I’m not weak.
I’m not weak because I cry while we’re talking.
I’m not weak because I tend to be more of people pleaser than you.
I’m not weak because I feel off balance if my feelings are hurt.
Empathy is a beautiful strength -- one of which our country and the Church needs more of. Tears are wonderful. They are a physical, tangible sign to show the impact of our feelings both good and bad. That’s a wonderful thing.
However, my feelings feel like reality. And the truth is they are not. That’s why I need you sweet Thinker. I need you to gently steer me back to the truth that just because my feelings feel VERY real, they are not truth. They may be true, but they are not truth.
I can feel worthless. But I am made worthy through the Cross.
I can feel too far gone. But Jesus THINKS over wise.
While I need to sit patiently through while you’re processing your feelings, I need to remember your feelings matter just as much as mine. And my thoughts matter just as much as yours. I just might say “I feel” instead of “I think” to introduce mine.
But yes, patience to not take your analytical side personally.
Kindness to remember it’s a beautiful thing we’re different.
And selflessness to hold on to seeking deep friendships with you.
We need each other.
I hope I can help you, because I know you help me.