At the moment you realise, optimism and anticipation instantly gives way to shock and sadness. You want to punch, cry and curl up into a ball whilst spewing forth an almighty howl.

The hope you imagined is no longer possible. The prospect of wonder dashed onto the rocks. You feel cheated and sad at the same time.

Before long grief at the loss of anticipation rasps at the throat and anger erupts at hope’s sudden departure.

So much goes on that all you can feel is the knot in your stomach and a body about to burst.

You are disappointed.

Disappointment is such an ugly word, full of sharp edges and too many syllables. Somehow single syllable feelings: love, joy, sad and fear are truly simple by comparison.

Built like a saw to describe convoluted emotions it may be one of the most painful words around.

Of course there are things that are only mildly disappointing.

A poor performance by your favourite soccer team or rain on the day of the cricket can trigger the emotion to appear but never for very long. A quick rant with your mates at the referee and it passes. Such mild episodes also leave little behind.

When you feel let down on important matters then the feelings are not so easy to banish. The visceral response from your limbic system will pass as life moves you on but there is a legacy. The saw leaves emotional scars across your once smooth fabric.

Partners, true friends and family are the most acute source of these bigger events. Not when they rile or frustrate you but when your vision of them is shattered. The best person can never live up to your expectations for or of them. Soon enough they falter and you are wounded and sometimes the gash is fatal.


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