Falling and Getting Up
originally posted at https://writerswhokill.blogspot.com/2020/05/falling-and-getting-up.html
I’ve had a few life-altering experiences, as I’m sure most of us have. The most devastating ones have made me feel like the floor has been yanked out from under me. There was no stable place to walk. The earth beneath my feet had opened up and shown me a deep, dark abyss. Nothing was familiar.
That’s what it feels like when I go into depression. When I come out, I realize that there are still colors, and sounds—like birdsong and tree frogs, and bright things—like fireflies, stars, even a moon.
What has often gotten me through depression is the lists I’ve made, at the advice of my therapists. They are lists of what is good in my life.
Okay, so this plague has robbed us, stolen our lives. We are now living in a different historical era than we were a few short months ago. We’re in an unimaginable place. Unfamiliar. Hostile even. For me, I can clearly see that this intruder is out to kill me. I’m in the high-risk age group, and the bad-lung group, plus some mitochondrial stuff that doesn’t help. So I’m on the defensive. Many people don’t have to be so careful, or they think they don’t have to. Some healthy, young people have been fatally stricken, to everyone’s surprise.
Meanwhile, we’re learning to live in this alien landscape. We avoid crowds, or even, my case, most people. We pay attention and make sure everything is clean. We buy or make masks to protect each other (if we’re good people).
And that list? It’s still there. I still have many of the good things I’ve always had.
I have these.
-The love of my family, scattered across the country and even across the globe, into Europe.
-Many phone calls and other communication.
-The warm camaraderie of my writing colleagues online.
-An occupation I love, goals that keep me occupied, even when I can’t do everything I want to.
-Shelter, food, clothing, heat and AC, trash pickup.-Doctors at my beck and call by phone or video, or even face to face if I need to do that.
-The daily newspaper. (I know, that seems trivial, but I love the comics and puzzles.)
-So many books I haven’t yet read.-
-New books coming out all the time.
-My music, which I’ve neglected lately and am going back to in a small way.
-A spectacular yard, with roses and irises now, after a progression for the last couple of months, although those plants are really kicking up my allergies.
-Good neighbors who all keep track of each other.
---NEW: Social distancing walks with my local family, me on one side of the street, them on the other.
I don’t have these any longer:
-New episodes of Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy!
-The news, which I used to watch, but no longer can.
-Dinner out with my kids and grandkids, and eating together at our houses.
-The joy of driving my grandkids to lessons and classes.
BUT, most of the items in the second list will come back in due time. And that first list is a lot longer.
What do you miss? What do you take joy in now? What are you looking forward to getting back…some day?
Images from Pixabay.com, Morguefile.com; roses are mine—aren’t they gorgeous?