May 26, 2014 by phicks2012
I suspect we’ve all had something go wrong in our lives — something that created a lot of stress and anxiety, enough that the weight of it felt just too heavy to carry alone. When things like that happen, we often feel the need to talk to a friend or a loved one, hoping for encouragement, for understanding, and possibly for good, positive, manageable advice. We need to feel better, and more confident of the future, and to know, at least, that someone does care. We need to glimpse a light at the end of the proverbial tunnel.
Some people are naturally good at this. They listen, and help us to calm down when we’re overwrought, and they point out workable alternatives, and even make us laugh and forget for a moment or two about whatever troubles us. Those are friends to be valued.
But some people, however well-meaning, are just horrible confidants. Before we even finish telling them what has happened they will start pointing out dire possibilities that we might not already have considered ourselves, and insisting that we immediately take extraordinary and impractical steps to forestall even the most unlikely of consequences, lest every single one of them occur — and the world, as we know it, end!! 🙂 Unfortunately, what they succeed, all unintentionally, in doing is in making it all seem at least twice as bad as it already was in the first place — leaving us in a high state of stress wondering if the sky might not, after all, really be falling.
I’ve begun to realize that there are people we probably just need to avoid talking to when things go wrong, even if they are otherwise counted as friends, because sharing our burdens with them is only going to increase our stress level, raise our blood pressure, and interfere with our sleep patterns — and they often will show absolutely no sign that they are aware of this. Read: Well-meaning but somehow emotionally oblivious.
I’ve also found that showing any disinclination to follow their proffered advice and go to the sometimes outlandish lengths dictated, can cause this sort of would-be advisor to react with impatience or even with a bit of hostility. After all, we obviously would be freaking idiots to ignore the proverbial writing on the wall — but I digress.
The verse below was written immediately after one such awkward exchange — just so you’ll understand the motivation for setting pen to paper rather than to a good-intentioned friend — and I hope you enjoy it! 😉
“Doom and Gloom”
When ‘neath a darkened sky we stand, and feel the beat of thunder,
Its rumble threatening all the land, to mute the song of wonder,
And we look out with hopeful eyes to seek a brightening glimmer
Some helpful soul will e’er devise to make the sky grow dimmer.
Why is it that when most we need a voice that will encourage,
And make the angry clouds receed, some always must discourage?
Why must they rush to make us see how dire the situation,
And use their negativity to stir the conflagration?
If we confide our churning fears in hope of reassurance
Some folk will rush to fill our ears, and challenge our endurance.
With words of caution and of woe, and warnings dire to proffer,
They point out all that well may go to Hell, no cheer to offer.
Give us your solace, if you care, and heal our souls with laughter,
And hold our hands when we despair of happy ever after.
Spare us your prophesies of woe when darkness ready hovers,
For confidence and fear, all know, are most unlikely lovers.
[28 April, 2014]