Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Thin + Skin = Big Baby

After growing up a sci-fi nut and thus watching every episode of Star Trek Next Generation (twice or more), i'm convinced I'm an empath. Or maybe i just really want to find a way to rationalize the fact that i'm over(ly) sensitive. I not only experience my own pain and hurt to the nth degree but other people's as well.

Anybody who knows me well knows that if a jumbo jet crashes with hundreds of passengers onboard, i'm haunted for days afterwards. I can't stop thinking about it. I can't stop imagining the hell those people went thru in their final moments. So imagine me after the tsunami. Or Katrina. Sept 11th? AND i was in New York that day? forget it. I've spilled enough tears to fill the Pacific. For real people and for fictional ones.

I watch the Sopranos (go figure) and i have to look away whenever someone gets whacked. I can't watch operations. I'm a big fan of action/disaster movies (go figure again) but i just now turned away from some Earthquake in New York flick cuz i could feel myself getting upset and the opening credits hadn't even finished rolling...Charles S. Dutton was only just starting to yell at the guy who complained that the Met was flooded...but i can't watch it.

I've long ago accepted it and in some ways, i've embraced it. It helps and hinders me all at the same time. I feel that my heightened sense of empathy (peace to Lauren Olamina) helps me be more sensitive to others. I'm generous and caring by nature. People often tell me that i'm easy to talk to..warm. Open. But other times, i feel weak and fragile...as if *kryptonite* is nearby...in relationships, that oversensitivity can cause major problems. But as a creative person, its a rich and diverse well that i can draw from to express any emotion.

I often wonder if more people were as sensitive to other's pain as i am, how different would the world be? Would it be as easy for a President to drop bombs on a country if the thought of it made him/her physically ill? Would it be as easy for a man to slap his girlfriend? Would it be as easy for a doctor to withhold treatment from a patient with no medical insurance?

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