Sensitivity is a Super Power

For as long as I can remember, I have been what most would describe as sensitive. In my case, I am not just sensitive in the emotional sense. Rather, I am sensitive to the fullest extent: physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Physically, I have sensitivities to fragrances, chemicals, environmental inhalants (gas fumes, smoke, pollen, pet dander, mold, dust), and many foods. I am easily bothered by air/wind in my face/eyes/ears, repetitive and high pitched sounds, and the noise of a crowd (such as at a sporting event). I find many textures to be undesirable in tactile way, particularly those that make me itch.

Emotionally and spiritually, my sensitivities aren’t quite as easy to define or list, as they are ever evolving. I have a profound, almost psychic, connection to my mother. When I was a child, my world revolved around her. When she was hurt or upset, I felt those emotions, too, as though I was an extension of her. That is still very true today. Similarly, when anyone I am close to is happy, sad, wistful, or mad, I ride the wave of emotions right alongside them.

My sensitivities also extend to people I don’t know and situations which do not involve me. Watching the nightly news, for example, conjures up a certain level anxiety because it is typically full of stories of struggle and strife. Even commercials intended to touch a viewer’s heart almost always move me to tears. To be honest, being so sensitive has been a burden at times. It can be incredibly exhausting to be the sponge that absorbs all that’s around you.

The fact that I am so sensitive has been something that I have always been embarrassed by. It’s not easy to be the person who can’t do what the others are doing because of one sensitivity or another. You become accustomed to the feeling of exclusion and isolation. Thankfully, I have learned that people don’t mean to be intolerant of your situation – they just don’t really understand it if they aren’t experiencing it. I have also learned that there is a term for what I experience: Highly Sensitive Person (HSP). There are tons of resources about HSPs and all of the ones I have read seem to be describing me to a T.

A while back, I adopted the mission of turning my thoughts about my sensitivities from negative to positive. In doing so, I have come to realize that I was born with a super power. Because of my physical sensitivities, I have been able to avoid serious illness and harm since I take such vigilant steps toward protecting myself on a daily basis. Likewise, because of my emotional and spiritual sensitivities, I have known the true, abiding love of my spouse, family & dear friends, experienced meaningful interactions with people that perhaps otherwise may not have taken place, and tend to see the good that is found within everyone. I am now proud of the fact that I am sometimes a fragile flower who needs a bit of extra TLC in order to bloom to her fullest & most beautiful! 🌻

-Cyndi

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