Things I want people to know.
Originally posted October 7, 2018 on the previous Little Mountains Blog website.
I’ve been having trouble lately. I’ve been having trouble getting a grip on my thoughts and feelings, both of internal origin and regarding the bullshit blender that our government has been casually tossing authentic, painful, inexcusable truths into lately. Feeling emotionally unstable like this has always been hard for me. I like to pack my feelings neatly into boxes and tie them up with pretty ribbons, often to remain that way until something or someone blows the dust off and I’m forced to confront what’s inside. And for me, the first thing to get shut off when I can’t make sense of my feelings is my ability to communicate them effectively – which makes this post as much of a challenge as it is a relief.
These are some things that have been on my mind lately. These are things I want people to know, even when everything in me is saying, “Bottle it all up until it makes sense or goes away.”
First and foremost, I want Dr. Christine Blasey Ford to know that what she did wasn’t all for nothing. I want her to know that I admire her strength, her vulnerable courage, her fight. I want her to know that I BELIEVE HER. I want the way we so poorly handle sexual assault cases in this country to change drastically. I want survivors of sexual assault to stop being reminded of their trauma every time they read a current news headline. I want every man – each and every one of you – to take a step back from his place of pride and muster up the humility to re-learn the way he’s been taught to think about women. I want respect toward ALL women to become the new norm, and I want that ideology to shape the way we raise children, interact with each other at ANY age, and make policies.
I want the people that I love that live far away to know that I miss them. I want them to know that fall is my favorite time of year but it’s filled to the brim with nostalgia this time. This is my second fall since moving back to Sacramento and it’s only now starting to feel like I really do live here, like I’m not just passing through. Like this is my home. There’s a permanence here that is sinking in, finally. That feeling is comforting, but it also seems to be setting the distance from so many of those I love in concrete.
I want you to know that I’m scared. Not only in the usual, typical, always-in-the-back-of-my-head kind of way – that thing called anxiety. That’s there, too. But lately I’ve been scared in the way that feels like I’m carrying the weight of the world on my shoulders, and damn, it’s heavy. The ignorant politics, the backwards thinking, the dangerous decision-making. From the outside in, it’s hard not to be scared, sad, and angry. But this year, I’m also scared of things that I’ve always loved and looked forward to – the rain and the falling leaves and the shorter days and the soon-to-be cold, naked trees. Fall and winter are the most magical seasons for me – for some reason, this is the time of year when I have the most access to my own feelings. But along with that magic comes the threat of seasonal depression, loneliness, and emotional instability. Maybe it’s not the weight of the world or the seasons I’m scared of, maybe I’m scared of the emotional depletion these things will bring upon me.
I hate the fact that I can’t fix anything – myself, the world, the pain I see around me. I hate the fact that the muscles in my back are twisting into knots as I write and I hate the fact that I’m scared to share this when sharing used to be so easy for me.
But I guess everything is constantly changing (like the seasons! – excuse the awful simile) and I guess I can be grateful for that. I want you to know that I’m scared right now, but I won’t be scared always.
And I suppose all of this is to say – I want you to know that if what you’re carrying right now is heavy, you’re not alone in that feeling.