Thoughts on Coping

I read an article this morning on how to avoid the pandemic stress from engulfing me. It had a few good pointers, but they were all focused on ways to move out of the stress. While I agree with the steps shared (you can read the article here), it omitted the value of just letting the grief, anxiety, and (let’s be honest) rage, pour over. I know that as an introvert and empath (not to mention one who battles depression), that I’m super in-tune to all the feels out there in our world. And this does not even include my personal life: changes in how I “go” to work, my baby boy now a high school graduate with no traditional celebration or family gathering, my daughter off at her last semester of college that may or may not have in-person classes in the fall. Changes in the economy that change my husband’s income. Immunocompromised family and friends. The fact that my favorite writing event, Mountain Heritage Lit Festival at LMU had to be canceled for this summer, meaning I’ll miss my most dear community of friends and the new ones I always make, and the great writers I meet and learn from. It’s crushing. When I’m feeling all of these emotions, advice to write down a gratitude list seems juvenile and ineffective at best. Don’t get me wrong, it has its benefits. I’ve done it. But I have to be in another state of mind and emotion to do so and gain the benefits.

So I let it roll over me. The tears, the confusion, the rage, the lack of control (while also re-realizing any version of control I thought I had was an illusion). That’s a lot to take in. But a good bit of crying and/or solo time is a huge balm to dealing with all my emotions, and I think every list out there should include such. To ignore or suppress our grief and shock of the state of our world at the moment would be detrimental. So cry. Go chop wood. Yell. Dance. Listen to loud-ass music. Make art. Do something every day to acknowledge and release the pain, and then do something that brings you joy. That’s my map forward. I hope I can keep steady on it. Today will include reflection, and when work is complete, time in the garden. Love to you all.

7 thoughts on “Thoughts on Coping

  1. Crying works. When I’m alone I just cry. Then I pull myself back together and continue on. Blessings to you and your family. 💜💜

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  2. Great piece, Rosemary!
    I’ve always known you to be a survivor.
    A survivor of all the “slings and arrows” life has thrown at you. I so admire your ability to confront the vicissitudes of your personal experience, respond honestly and continue to dig in the dirt for your healing.
    I’m proud to know you, grateful to have shared a part of your pain and your joy.
    Thank you.

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  3. Shoot!!!!
    And here I was grateful just to write a gratitude list – and now I’ve found out that doesn’t work?
    Now I’m really going to cry.
    I’ll let you know if crying is the balm that soothes me.

    Though I suspect I might also need to chop some wood, go for a trike ride, yell from the top of Bald Mountain, and all the other suggestions that work for you as well as all the other suggestions that we get on FB, Twitter, the News,and Vcx453wytecz99)*hy65^xz (those are the new encrypted thoughts that go through my mind these days after listening to all the aforementioned and their ideas – that’s what my mind has come to).

    All my best (which I’m sure you’ll recognize, after reading this, is not much), your friend in levity (oh yes. and I’m adding writing to the list of balms that soothes the soul),

    Randy

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  4. Rosemary, you make so much good sense. I can identify with you. I think you carry a far greater load than I do. Dance woman, cry your heart out, enjoy deep solitude. You have my love and support.

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  5. Applauding you, Rosemary! Heard a quote on Sunday (not sure who to credit) that allowed me to release myself from the emotional prison I was harboring the key to. “This isn’t the grief olympics.” YES, there’s indeed a range of grief involved with this chaos. I don’t need a pandemic to count my blessings, nor do I know a soul that does. EVERYONE is grieving. The only requirement to be allowed your human emotions is to be a human. I Have neither the ability nor the desire to robotically slot my feelings because someone else deems them unworthy. HUGS❣️

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