To all of my fellow friends out there that can’t quite grasp the recognition of your own worth and strengths: this one is for you.
I seemed to have lost control of my emotions; it feels as though my life has been swallowed up, and I am merely floating in some sort of empty space.
I had to take a mini break from blogging, because I have been unable to form my feelings into words. I barely can do so now, but knew writing would help to decompress my thoughts. (Long story short, sorry in advance if this post is a bit scattered.)
Over the past few weeks, my perspective of my day to day life has changed drastically. Major stressors have consumed my existence, and with that, I feel as though I have been forced to grow up overnight.
Bloating. Even the word itself is ugly. It feels round and insulting. Normally, these descriptive words would translate directly to how I feel towards my own bulging belly. However, now, I am working towards the opposite (even as difficult as it is).
Close your eyes and think back to your last trip to a restaurant. You and your closest friends all squeeze together, practically on top of each other inside a cozy booth, as menus are passed around the table. The options seem endless. You have no idea what you’re in the mood for, though, your stomach is teased by the juicy scent of a meat-lovers’ pizza crisping in the oven. The restaurant is bustling with people laughing and chatting. You look around to see what others have ordered: gooey garlic bread; heaping mounds of buttery, twisted pasta; a sizzling slightly-pink steak. Your stomach grumbles in its empty state. Flash forward and its past dinnertime. Your bellies are slightly rounder and filled with carbs, but now your tastebuds crave sweetness. You stand in line outside on this warm spring evening, waiting for your mint ice cream to be handed to you. Couples and giddy children huddle beside you underneath the light of the shack, as they share chocolatey licks of their cones and spread ice cream around their lips.
Now, forget everything you have just imagined. Picture the opposite. Picture restaurants with giant “CLOSED” signs dangling in their windows in the middle of the day. Picture vacant parking lots and barren streets. Instead of bumping into neighbors and sharing friendly conversations at your local supermarket, you’re now rushing down the aisles in hopes of avoiding all contact. The shelves look as if they were ravaged through by animals. Bread and eggs have suddenly become a scarcity. People’s faces are draped with tight surgical masks, bandanas, old scarves, or anything else they could find to cover their mouths. Bare hands are a rarity, and instead they’re now hidden behind rubber barriers. This is the current state of the world that we’re living in today, and it feels like a scene straight out of a horror movie.
Because the glass isn’t half-empty, you’re just more hydrated now.
It is the middle of January in New England, yet it was a balmy 60 degrees the other day. Although this is a sure sign of climate change, I took advantage of the warming Earth and went walking with my dogs.
It was when I was walking my big lug of a Bernese Mountain Dog, Darla, that I seemed to have a moment with myself. I suddenly had felt the urge to stop in the middle of the road and close my eyes. I’m not sure if it was the sun beaming onto my face or the wind’s warm gusts, but in that moment, everything felt at peace.
I feel it most at night, when I’m laying awake by myself. There are only so many things that can distract your mind when you’re in the silence of a darkened room.
It happens with long car rides too. Car rides can actually be the worst. I have an hour and a half drive from my university to my hometown, and doing it alone is enough to drive me mad some days. Podcasts aren’t so effective if your brain chooses to ignore them, no matter how hard you try to listen.
My mother was an incredible gardener, filling our yard with gorgeous flowers season after season. And, to this day, my father works wonders in our vegetable garden, growing all of the beautifully delicious vegetables that feed us all summer long. Yet, even with their talents in tending to plants, I have never been one to have a green thumb.
I bought a cactus and another small succulent last summer to have as decoration in my dorm room. However, I over-watered my cactus, rotting it out only a short two weeks after buying it. Then, I almost killed the remaining succulent the exact same way (because I clearly didn’t learn anything from it), until my dad came to the rescue. Here we are a year later, and he has kept my little “succy” alive and well. Though, he did not let me take it back to college with me.
So, inevitably, this summer I got three new plant friends as replacements. Does my dad know? He sure does. Is he going to end up caring for them when I begin to kill them off? Absolutely not! I am determined to not let it happen again.
It has gotten to the point where I have simply forgotten how to take care of myself. Funny, because this blog is all about empowering people to take part in self-care and self-love, yet I can’t even do it myself.