I’ve been in a state of funk for the past six weeks and retreated. Not retreated in an organized fashion like to a nice spa resort, but retreated from everything that didn’t need to be done. Like an injured animal, I had to reserve my resources for strictly the necessities like cooking, mothering and working. The extras of life that didn’t serve pure survival had to wait.
The last three weeks in particular have been tough. Not for any specific reason and at the same time, for all the reasons. (Mercury also went into retrograde around that time so there’s that…)
I journaled last week during a particular low moment where many things came to a head. Words that had been living right below my consciousness came spilling out —
I am so tired of this pandemic. I am so tired of waking up with dread and staying up late so that the next day doesn’t come so quickly.
I am so tired of not doing anything right by anyone. That apparently I am failing in all of my roles.
I want to just crumble into a mass of dust on the ground and let the wind scatter me about so that I don’t have to hold myself together anymore because it is really impossible. It is impossible to live this existence day in and day out.
The past year has been incredibly hard. And I feel immense guilt in saying this because I have SO MANY resources. But part of reclaiming ourselves is honoring our experiences as their own because guilt serves no one and at the same time, holding onto the fact that resources and privileges do make a significant difference in each of our experiences.
Wherever you are, I see you.
Over the past year, my moments of grounded-ness have been brief and often have an air of desperation around them – trying to grasp them whenever I can, day or night, in between the needs of my children, my husband, my mom, my home, my job and my personal work.
I have felt like I am holding it all together with duct tape – and not the good kind. More like the generic kind which I, after ripping off the last piece, accidentally dropped into a pile of sawdust and only 10% of the surface is usable and sticky but I have to use it because I don’t have anything else available.
And yet at the same time, I’m doing it. Just like you’re doing it. “It” being whatever needs to be done so that life can keep going even though nothing in our lives has prepared us for these circumstances.
In the class, I took time to examine the version of Me that existed in March 2020 and mourned and honored her.
Oh gosh, I mourned hard for Lisa March 2020.
She was 6 months postpartum and ready to come out of the postpartum haze to reclaim her mind, body and spirit as well as become involved in her community.
And it wasn’t until I danced and cried and curled up into myself in that class that I allowed myself to retract and remember that version of myself.
The constant barrage of concerns and responsibilities and fears and unknowns and requests and expectations over the last 450 days has occupied my every fiber and put me in a heightened state of alertness where I never felt like I could let my guard down.
I have been ready to fight or flight at any moment, waiting on the terrible thing to happen to my family and simultaneously being bombarded with news of all the terrible things happening out in the world.
When I breathed out and sensed that relief, my body said, “Hey, there you are, old soul.” It felt so right and so familiar.
As things are opening up in my local area, I feel a great disconnect between what others are saying is “safe” and my perceived sense of safety. New guidelines seem to say, “You can breathe now – there is relief.” But my breath of relief is still privately held, not trusting that it is truly time for it to go public.
How many of us are operating from this place of high alert? And how are we operating as changes continue to happen that are out of our control? And how do we operate when the version of us 2020 is still within us holding unprocessed grief, constant fears and unrealized desires?
My feeling of relief was momentary while also showing that it is possible to capture such a moment, however short it is.
I’m finding curling into myself, even if for a brief moment to be soothing. I’m finding relief in me, myself and I as life tugs in infinite directions. I’m practicing shutting out things for 60 seconds to focus on my body and its sensations, and as I shift things, things will shift.
If you’re interested, a replay of Kimberly’s class, MotherRespite, is still available at the time of this post here (scroll to the middle of the page to find it). If you can dedicate 1 hour and 15 minutes to watch her class, I’d highly recommend it. Note: while Kimberly is offering this class as a precursor to her course, her free materials are no strings attached and fantastic; and I have no vested interest in her course other than being a student myself and one of her biggest fans.
If you don’t take part in the class, take a moment to write a bit about the version of you – March 2020 and give yourself full permission to feel whatever comes up. If it helps, go down to the comments and tell me about her/him/them. I’d love to hear.