As A Highly Sensitive Person, It Can Be Hard To Trust My Instincts

by Taylor Speier
Originally Published: 
Scary Mommy and JGI/Jamie Grill/Getty

I plop myself down on Jenn’s couch and take in the room. It’s changed since I was last here. The bookshelf is in a different corner; a desk has moved. But the clipboard and tiny, square tabletop clock are familiar.

I’ve come to deeply trust my counselor. I know there isn’t anything I can’t say to her. It’s taken me years to get here, but I’m at a place now where I can dive right in.

That’s the thing about trust — it may take months or years to build it up, but once it’s in place, it is a haven. A refuge. A sanctuary.

I tell her the heavy things, we laugh about the light things, and we make it to the end of our session.

Jenn has this way of ushering me out of the safety of her office where she speaks courage into my being. We both know that her office is the place where I can let my guard down, but there’s a certain amount of armor that’s needed to reenter the real world. I think the idea is that we strip off the protective armor that hinders our growth when we walk in the door, and when we leave, we put on a new type of armor that protects it.

I have walked in her door wearing shame and doubt and walked out wearing forgiveness and courage.

Today as we are wrapping up, she says to me, “I think your instincts are good. They really are.”

I’ve made it 48 minutes without tearing up, but her words settle into my chest with a softness that whispers to me, “Take it in.”

So I breathe in and out. In and out. And I hold what she’s just said to me. The tears rest in the corners of my eyes, and I listen to what they’re trying to tell me.

For years, I was ashamed of my sensitivity. I tried hard to swallow my tears — to hide my body’s innate reactions to the world. But I’m learning that my body is telling me things all the time.

Today my tears acknowledge that yes, I can trust myself. I can trust my body. I can trust my gut.

I tell Jenn that her words have healed me in a way I didn’t know I needed to be healed.

As I walk out her door and inhale the outside air, I put on my new armor of self-trust.

No matter what the world has told you about yourself — that you have come to believe as true — I want you to know that you are good.

So innately GOOD, friend.

We are not our mistakes and our shortcomings. We are not the labels that we have been deemed by the world.

We. Are. Good. You are so, so good. And I am good, too.

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