So, it’s teacher appreciation week. That’s basically a test for adults. And I am not nearly adulty enough to have to do specific things at specific times.
Have you ever been so stressed out that suddenly you just… weren’t?
Last week I was clinging to the end of my rope by a very frayed thread. Tuesday morning, I woke up extra early. The windows were open, the ceiling fan was on, the birds were chirping, and it was the perfect temperature in the house. It was just perfect. For about two minutes. As soon as I noticed myself thinking about how lovely everything felt, my brain fell apart. It’s not even that I was having coherent anxious thoughts — there were no thoughts, it was all chaotic swirling of overwhelming feelings. It was suffocating and I wanted to crawl out of my skin. I mean it felt like there was literally not enough oxygen in the air.
I have a ton of new readers (or at least new Facebook followers who I hope will be readers). I think normal people would be excited about that. I, on the other hand, am suddenly gripped with an inability to write anything because what if they hate me? I think most of you have gotten here via the “The Dishes Can Wait” essay, which was sort of my pinnacle of sarcasm, hyperbole, and snark.
I have this recurring stress dream where my favorite band is playing in town and I don’t know it until it’s almost too late. Sometimes I miss the show, sometimes I barely make it. Sometimes I’m in my underwear. Like you do.
A couple of days ago, I was cheering to some friends that my therapist will be back from maternity leave soon. A friend responded, “Party down to sanity town!”
I was thinking I hadn’t felt all that depressed this winter. Then I realized that everyone else is also depressed so I’m only less depressed by comparison. It’s difficult to wallow in this temporary darkness when we are all engulfed in an existential muck. We are all Artax and we’re walking through the Swamp of Sadness. Even the most optimistic among us are Atreyu, at best — doomed to keep up that grim determination lest The Nothing descend upon us all.
I don’t trust birth.
There. I said it.
I feel like I’m supposed to be a good little half-hippie, trusting birth and bodies and earthmothergoddessblahblahblah.