Uncertainty is temporary,
as all things are.
But the sea remains.
And the avenues forward
will become clear again.
I want to preface this post with saying that I am not in any way trying to make light of the current COVID19 situation. It’s terrifying. It’s unprecedented. One person dying from it is too many.
I think I am reminded of universal suffering and universal strength when I am forced to pause. A forced pause might look like when your body takes over and forces you to slow down by becoming sick/burnt out. This current virus situation has forced me to slow down in much the same way and put things in perspective. Yes, it’s important for me to finish my dissertation, and fortunately I still should be able to on my timeline with Zoom/virtual meetings. But… it has also forced me to look at how precious/short life is (among other events of the past week) and to not stop living/taking care of myself when shit gets crazy/sad/unpredictable.
This past week has made me realize that when things disrupt my routine I have to be extra vigilant to keep my mental health in check… because depression/anxiety await for me. This past week was a close one. I was close to sliding back into anxiety/depression, but I have plans to swim laps later today and that should help get me back on track. I am just reminded how … due to my background/make up, I have to be extra vigilant, and it takes nearly no time for me to get thrown off and back in a fog, which is scary because I had been doing so well for most of 2020… and it only took a about a week of eating like shit, not exercising like I normally do, not sleeping well, and being extremely anxious/stressed out to put me on the verge of an actual flare up/episode.
If you are forced to stay home (as I am) and await further instruction/work from home, try your best to not become isolated. Stay in contact with other people. Take this pause as an opportunity for reflection… and ponder what is in your control and what isn’t. A conference I was looking forward to in San Diego this April (the American Counseling Association Conference) got cancelled… and I was selfishly disappointed. But then I thought about how if I were facilitating the conference I would have done exactly the same thing. It’s not worth the risk. It isn’t in your control that the world may seem to be shutting down, but that doesn’t mean you have to cease to live. Be vigilant, don’t be reckless, but this hiatus in organized activity isn’t going to stop me from going on walks, writing, pursuing my passions, etc. I really do hope that by May things will be contained so that I can take my yearly trip to the sea… if not, I will accept that and try to reschedule at another time.
As long as I’m alive and breathing, I have to believe that the sea awaits. It helps keep me going. In a world that seems so chaotic, the sea moves, changes color, shifts in mood… but it remains and is the same. In many ways it is our oceans/sea that made life even possible… I try to hold on to that. It’s still here. I’m still here. You’re still here. Take care, take care, take care.
I hope all of you are safe, and well… wash your hands!
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