Dear Google: The Other Side Of Sadness

I don’t need a wedding pinboard on Pinterest or a Taylor Swift playlist to scare away some perfectly suitable future boyfriend. I’m pretty sure this blog is enough to do the trick. It’s loaded down with enough heavy hearts to make flying feel pretty much impossible.

Last week, I learned that Google’s got me pinned as the go-to source for all things crying girls. Yes, that’s right. I rank pretty little number one (across the entire Internet?!) for “girl crying tumblr” and “girl crying tumblr” and page two for “broken girl.”

That’s led thousands of people to this blog post I wrote about my sister’s emotional breakdown in our kitchen last summer.

Which is just super sad, because my heart has always wanted to take hurt and toss it out the window. I want to be known not as a sad, sorry girl who never really figured out life until it was gone, but as a girl who learned life in a series of big, troubling moments that should’ve made her doubt this little thing called love, but didn’t.

life rarely gives us what we wanted, girl on beach, girl balloon

I’m just gonna say it right now: I’m a hopeful romantic.

(Jen Long, thank you for that phrase.)

And no amount of Google crawlers or SEO rankings will change that. Because there are always two sides to a story like the broken girl or the crying girl or the girl who slices onions when she’s upset just so nobody will know those are real tears dripping onto the cutting board.

The first is that she broke. For whatever reason, she just snapped in half with no expectation of ever gluing herself back together.

The second is that someone lent her a bottle of Elmer’s and said, “Have at it.” That’s my favorite part: when life hands you a tube of superglue, throws it’s head back to laugh and says, “Take that, tough times!”

(Few moments deserve exclamation marks. The overcoming, in the biggest and baddest sense of the word, is one such moment.)

I’d like to propose, to anyone who finds this blog in search of some sureness that their heartbreak is real and true, to hang around and search deep for the moments in which my life, and that of my nearest and dearest, held in it enough joy to light a Christmas tree.

Few years are packed with total joy or total suffering. In the last nine months, I have had days where shuffling a local reporter into my front door seemed like the best kind of anxiety and nights where I was sure I was God’s biggest failure in the state of Maryland.

I have cried for people who died 14 years ago. And wrestled with my family’s fallout post-9/11. I have learned that life so rarely lends you what you thought you needed, that you must sift and sort and sit down in front of your mirror and find yourself beneath all the rubble you’ve let get in the way between what you want most and where you are now.

And it is for all the pain that holds us together as human freaking beings that makes me sure there will always be a light to guide us home, no matter how dark the roads get, no matter how quickly the sun sets, no matter how far we stand from the people who love us most.

It is with that in mind that I’d like to propose Google get itself an algorithm that pairs pretty little hope-filled moments with those seekers who go searching the vast universe for reassurance of their pain.


One response to “Dear Google: The Other Side Of Sadness

  1. Google doesn’t know us. Google can’t hold us down.

    It’s so much easier to see in retrospect the way that life is never all sadness or all joy. We get moments of both in different concentrations. I suppose the trick is, as you say, holding onto the joy. Always.

    Lovely post.

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