So, I was in the bathtub doing a little self-care (gigantic “crystal power” bath bomb, a glass of Chardonnay and the August issue of In Style magazine with Serena Williams on the cover) when I realized I was good and truly stressed out.
Like, epically stressed out.
Sometimes I don’t know until my body tells me. I’m very good at being fine, at swallowing my feelings until they erupt in the form of a panic attack, a physical symptom, or depression. And when I say I swallow my feelings, I don’t mean in a conscious way. You could ask how I’m doing, I could tell you, “Hey, you know, I’m actually doing pretty well. Feeling positive about things,” and I mean it. I’m not lying to you. Well, I’m not lying to you on purpose. More to the point, I am lying to you and not lying to you at the exact same time. I AM fine and that’s what I know consciously. Subconsciously I’m freaking the fuck out.
I have a long history with anxiety and depression and they frequently manifest as either physical pain (think aching shoulders or tension headaches) or panic attacks. I meditate, I’m in therapy, and I try to be very open and honest about my struggles. Sometimes talking or writing or tweeting helps but sometimes shining a light on my issues makes them grow and turn more evil like throwing water on a Mogwai. I’ve been patting myself on the back lately for being oh so evolved and calm about things. OH LOOK AT ME, I AM A ZEN MONSTER, FEED ME CRYSTALS AND KOMBUCHA.
I’m putting the book out there in a month. Consciously I am ready and eager for this opportunity. I feel lucky and grateful and excited and scared and a lot of things. But, stressed hasn’t been one of them. Apparently I AM stressed, though. My body told me so. Today my jaw has hurt, I’ve been nauseous for no reason, and I’ve felt anxious like a panic attack was coming on. And, my day has been chill. I went for a long hike, I got free donuts, I saw sooooo many cute dogs, I finished reading a great novel. It’s been a good day. Nothing to worry about; nothing to stress about. Just, you know, the one thing.
The one thing is good to go. The first book has a cover, an acknowledgements page, and it’s ready to rock. I’ve done notes on the second book and I’m ready to send it to an editor I know. I have to do little things like make social media pages and add stuff to this website but that’ll all just take an afternoon and a jumbo bag of M&Ms. THIS IS ALL HAPPENING, Y’ALL.
So, I’m just going to try and feel my feels. I’m going to try and dig down and acknowledge how I’m really doing and forgive myself for being human and for giving an actual shit about my work and what I do with it. It’s all okay. I’m going with the flow, remember?
Besides, the world is full of bath bombs and I can buy all of them if I need to.
*featured pic is a cool sassy flower I met in my neighborhood the other day