*Trigger warning: COVID-19, depression/suicide, seizures, hallucinations*
I wake up every day feeling grateful. I’m so grateful for everything, and especially everyone, in my life.
But today… I feel sad.
Should I feel sad?
I don’t know.
But… I miss a lot of things from before the pandemic began.
Oktoberfest was supposed to be last weekend.
I can’t visit my grandparents because I don’t want them to get sick.
My sister from Nevada was here in Wisconsin recently and I wasn’t able to see her, because I wanted to comfort my boyfriend as his grandfather was induced into a coma in the ICU (but he’s getting better!).
I’m struggling to set boundaries with my energy and needs as someone on the spectrum.
A lot of things suck right now…
And it’s okay.
It’s okay to be sad about sucky things. It’s so unequivocally, absurdly okay.
Because I remember that on my 20th birthday I had to go to the hospital and then be driven 3 hours away in a cramped car to spend a few days in a psychiatric ward. I was suicidal and worried for my safety.
Years before that, I was having daily psychogenic seizures that we thought were going to kill me. I had frequent hallucinations of wolves chasing after me.
Today, I’m sitting at home, writing in my bed. I’m drinking a delicious hazelnut coffee and my boyfriend is getting Papa Murphy’s, my favorite pizza, because it’s $10 Tuesday.
My best friend of 9 years, my four-pawed “little man,” is taking a nap by my side. I’ve been listening to some throwback songs from when I was a kid (Fall Out Boy, anyone?).
I’m obsessed with Fall Guys lately, and I got a cute new pattern for my bean. I’ve been playing Hearthstone, Keyforge, and D&D.
I’m taking deep breaths.
I’m okay… and sad.
I’m grateful… and exhausted.
I’m content… and 2020 is an asshole.
We label emotions in a way that is so black and white, but all of my current feelings are direct adversaries, and it doesn’t matter.
That’s the human experience.
Sometimes, it’s shit.
Sometimes, it’s beautiful.
Most of the time, it’s both.
That duality gives the human experience the depth that makes life worth living.
In the meantime, I try to validate and express my feelings in a healthy way, and try to be grateful. I try to be kind and compassionate to everyone around me. I try to help the people in my life who deserve the world and then some.
I try my best, and when I don’t, I try to give myself grace.
That’s enough for me. If you’ve been hard on yourself, let me tell you: it’s enough for you, too.