On Feeling Invisible

Today, I am having a low day, a sad day. Today is a day to remind myself that there is a rhythm to life, a rhythm to creativity. It is a day for me to be mindful of the fact that energy ebbs and flows. Today is simply a low day. It will pass; these days always pass, but I wanted to document this so that when this happens again I will be comforted by this reminder. Also, if anyone else ever feels like this, I want to say this: I hear you.

Invisible Woman, by Marija Smits
Invisible Woman, by Marija Smits

Today is a day when I’ve felt as though I’m invisible. A few tiny tiny things (in the grand scheme of things) have occurred to make me feel like the character Amos Hart from the movie ‘Chicago’ who memorably sang the heart-achingly sad ‘Mr Cellophane’. A friend I was conversing with this morning wandered off mid-conversation to chat with another group of people. My inbox is continuing to remain desolately free of meaningful emails, although I’ve sent off many emails in the past fortnight (both professional and personal). Friend requests via Facebook of people I admire and would like to get to know better (though not in a creepy way, of course!) are just not happening. A Twitter conversation I started the other day trailed off into nothingness… My blog stats tell me that no one (well, okay, few people) are reading my blog. I am also failing to “see” my own work. It’s all rubbish, it’s all a waste of time. And most mothers can probably relate to this: all the cooking, cleaning, laundry, admin work, shopping, present-buying, birthday party-organizing, caring and loving that goes on unseen and unacknowledged by society (and sometimes friends and family too). Only a (work) rejection (for some funding) today made me feel something: Ouch!

I have to remind myself that other people have lots going on in their lives; to be patient, open-hearted. I have to remind myself that I am also guilty of forgetting to reply to friends’ emails (or social media exchanges) and that there’s no malice in my oversight – just an overstuffed schedule and a holey memory (and possibly also embarrassment when I realize how much time has passed since they first contacted me!). In short, we are all human. Forgive me. Forgive them.

The trouble with feeling invisible – for an HSP at least – is that a commonly offered solution is to: Speak out! Make yourself heard! All very well if you’re an extrovert and/or have enough energy to assert. But when I feel low this feeling invisible thing is self-reinforcing. I am invisible, ergo, I must hide away. Sometimes, hiding away (maybe with a large tub of ice-cream to watch a movie, or to play Minecraft, or whatever – at least the villagers interact with me!) is just the right thing to do. But there’s not always a chance to do this, and of course work, and household chores etc. etc. are an impediment to hiding away. And sometimes, hiding away can seem a bit scary, because there’s always the worry, Will I ever come out of this?

The answer is always, always this: YES. You will come out of this. There is a rhythm to life, a rhythm to creativity. Have trust in the rhythm of your body, the rhythm of the feminine wild. Do what you have to do in the “low” – hunker down, cry, make yourself heard – and then, when you are ready, come out once more to shine.




25 thoughts on “On Feeling Invisible”

  1. Hey Marija — I hear you, feel you. I’ve been battling a low over the past several days. And I completely agree. I know it will pass. I know to keep persevering through it. (A big solar flare might have influenced our feeling of vulnerability, as well . . . atmospheric and cosmic changes do affect us.) Best to you! Best to me! Best to us all :)) Thanks for expressing it so well :)) Your friend in California, Dawn

  2. These type of days are tough. But you know tomorrow will be brighter and you are in touch with your feelings. Power through however you can and we’ll see you on the other side!

  3. Oh, I’m sorry you’re feeling this way. And I’m sorry too that I’m definitely one who owes you an email and has become a bit mired in my own pickles this week. But am thinking of you and sending love.

    1. Thanks Helen. 🙂 And, seriously, no worries about the email! I know you’ve had the sick bug in your family, so that really is the worst. Puts my very small tribulations into context. Sending you love. xx

  4. Many hugs. This is all very familiar (well, not the motherhood bit, but the other bits!) – and thank goodness it passes. I hope that yours passes swiftly. Give it a kick in the arse from me as it goes. 😉

    1. Thanks so much Cathy. Much appreciated. Yes, I’ll boot it up the backside as it goes (though I won’t be too harsh on it since it does provide me with a useful gift – it makes me appreciate the good times more). 🙂

  5. Oh I know what you mean about social media – sometimes it can feel like you’re just shouting into the void, or at least like trying to be heard over music and chattering voices at a party. I’m not convinced that trying to shout louder helps though. Just take it easy, and wait things out x

  6. maddy@writingbubble

    So sorry you are feeling this way. I sometimes feel there’s just too much ‘noise’ in the modern world for many of us to feel heard. I made the decision earlier this week to delete the FB app and not check my feed (I don’t post much any more but I was checking FB all the time almost like a nervous tick), so while i still respond to notification actions from my groups I’m no longer privy to the stream of info about everyone’s lives. It’s such a relief. All those different voices from different people (some of whom I’ve never even met) has receeded. It’s like I can hear myself think again. Anyway, I’m really hoping you can make our meet up next month! A good old proper chat sounds like just what the doctor ordered. Xxx

    1. Yes, I totally relate to that ‘noise in my head’ thing. Social media really is all too much, isn’t it? And hearing yourself think is pretty important! Thanks so much for commenting and I’m SO looking forward to our meet-up. 🙂 xxx

  7. Totally hearing you Marija and of course it will pass, but in the midst of these feelings it can be hard to see. Sending love to you and a little reassurance that you are not invisible xx

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