I feel — everything. It is my genius. It burns me like fire.
Mary MacLane (1861–1929)
Señor Tao (April 17, 1948 -)
I too am a creature of intense passionate feelings. I tried to hide it as a child but everyone knew. There was no hiding it or escape from it. At an early age I could feel the feeling of others even if I didn’t wish to! It was not something I had control over. To this day I avoid crowds as much as possible. I am comfortable in small groups, two or three, but no more than six. When the group is too large, I have to shut down which turns off a method of my own perception and I withdraw.
I am empathic, which sometimes “burns me like fire.” As with many things in life, it is both a gift and a curse. A gift to help others. A curse when I just want to feel me. Perhaps this is why I love solitude. My solitude! A chance to feel my own feelings.
A few years ago I was diagnosed with epilepsy. Now things make sense. I have the disease of genius. One of the great things about epilepsy is that it is a trigger for me to know when I am being overwhelmed (“intense passionate feelings”) by circumstance at hand or just life in general as when I am feeling too much if that is possible. The problem is I have to venture onto the edge of physical and mental collapse to realize this gift, and sometimes I do, collapse. Regaining consciousness, lying on the ground, people standing over me wondering if someone should call for emergency assistance or if I am just drunk. Well, that is the curse.