Feeling overwhelmed


Feeling overwhelmed

First Name


Last Name


Current location

Niskayuna, NY

Relationship to Union

Other member of the Union community

When this took place

March, April, May 2020.

My Experience

Perhaps this shouldn’t be shared with anyone. Feelings seem taboo to talk about in our society.

For the last two days I’ve been in the weeds, stuck way below the cold water’s surface, unable to reach the sunshine above it. This happens to me periodically and I’m sure with us isolated in our homes that it happens to more than just me.

My daily calendar this year says awful things that make me chuckle because it is worst than anything I might say to myself. Today’s phrase is “The worst is behind you. And in front of you. And all around you.” Yes I can get that black about this corona virus after two months of isolation.

Today however is full of sunshine, cool and crisp. Traffic sounds filter in though the cars passing are minimal. The day holds great promise and beauty. Spring is here. The forsythia is fading but the azaleas are starting and the chipmunks haven’t yet beheaded the tulips. The yard and garden calls to me. Leaves unfurl and greenery surrounds me. Birds chatter and I know I’m not alone in the world.

Today I’ll stop being sorry for myself and re-boot. I start by putting this down in writing, turning it into words that reflect hope. Perhaps later I’ll turn it into a drawing out my window and a phone call to lift a friend’s spirits. Tasks will be picked up where I left them hopefully and life will continue. Life is good when you’re not in the weeds.

I sent these words to a friend and she writes back:
I’ve listened to so many others talk (write) about the Herculean work they’re doing, but my big successes are just motivating myself to get up, shower, and make breakfast. I talk myself into daily walks, as they are difficult for me because breathing and heart are so closely aligned and often difficult. What we’re all going through is grief, for our lives the way we wanted to and did live them, but can’t right now.

In many ways, I’ve already spent a long time social distancing. After the stem-cell transplant, I pretty much lived in the sunroom and watched the birds. It was all I could do to stay awake. Blues, malaise, depression, being in the weeds or underwater ... they’re as real as rain and can dampen our spirits just as the rains can. But I’ve started to appreciate the introspection time ... even though there are days when I’d prefer to wallow and not see the leaves and colors, or know there are hundreds of things to do.

Thank you for being there for me.

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