IT’S THE LAST SHOUTY THURSDAY BEFORE CHRISTMAS, AND IT’S ALSO THE LONGEST NIGHT FOR THOSE OF US IN THE NORTHERN HEMISPHERE, SO LET’S SHOUT INTO THE DARK, FRIENDS. or whisper. whispering is ok, too.
i think today is whispery for me, not because i don’t want to shout out my angst, but because my anxiety is a skosh insidious rn, and, inside its whirling, twirling vortex, i fear my shouts will be whisked away to vanish as if they’d never been. i owe my shouts more than that, frankly. so i’ll whisper them until i can yell again.
i’m mostly ok. fine. alright. good. other than, you know, a few headaches and neck tension and goblins of doubt and inadequacy who dance and gambol inside my head, grotesque caricatures of sugarplum fairies ratcheting up the dread that i haven’t done enough and what i’ve tried has failed too often. it’s the pressure of “too,” i guess. the lie that there’s balance to be had if i can only find the landing zone between being too much and too little. it’s that goldilocks deception that “just right” is a stable place to sit, to eat, to find rest and respite, instead of the reality that “just right” is merely a fleeting spot in the pendulum swing, here as swiftly as it’s gone.
two days ago, in the center of the swing, the place of “just right” as i was happily doing the silly thing i sometimes do, wandering around a movie set as an extra, i was suddenly and absolutely struck with the futility of being me. there was no trigger. the light of life and joy just went dark. bleak. i was, without irony, inside of lamentations, certain i am meaningless. it was brief, gone in a few hours, but i recognized my old false friend, depression, who lies and lies and lies and lies.
so now i get to do the work of raising the wards again. checking my security. finding and patching the dry rot where depression found purchase. i’m taking my meds. i’m being gentle with my brain. i’m making tea and putting myself to bed early. i’m taking deep breaths. i’m lighting cheerful candles. i’m reminding myself it’s ok to be a lot. a lot isn’t too much. and it’s ok to do just a little. a little isn’t not enough.
that’s mine, friends. what’ve you got? what whispers? WHAT SHOUTS? SHOUTY THURSDAY LASTS THROUGH THE WEEKEND, SO SHOUT/whisper ‘EM IF YOU GOT ‘EM!
photo: a little pink painted rock i keep in my office shed window with “joy” written in black marker, as covered in dust as my window sill. this tiny friend reminds me to seek joy in the hidden places. the dirty ones. i found it on a walking path during the first days of covid. some kind human leaving gentle reminders for strangers.