If you ignore how I felt, it was a beautiful Christmas.
I tried to ignore how I felt, so why should you be any different.
The truth is that my heart is absolutely broken.
I don't think you'd have any idea if you saw me
pretty much anywhere.
One reason so many people who love someone who gets into deep mental trouble can gasp and tremble 'but they seemed fine…' is because when you love your people, and when you have a deeply ingrained sense of your place in the scheme of things- all of us wrestling on the shores with our own Sad Fish, all of us head above water and swimming in the skin kissing sun and then drowning, terrified, or floating, accepting- then you do your job well. You mother, parent, friend, work, clean, caretake yourself in appropriate amounts, maybe you even make lists, pros and cons, write in a journal, pray, cry hysterically in the shower or the car, eschew foods that make the insanity sharper, jog, stretch, gently rub the tenderloins of your underfoot, dutifully log in correct hours to move your body parts, offer what you can to the world around you, recycle.
The worst thing I've ever done to myself, in my entire life, is to pretend, categorically and ongoing, that I don't feel how I feel.
This blog and this space is where I can say this is how it really is for me, right here, right now and not worry that I am burdening someone unfairly or asking for something I won't receive anyhow.
One of my best friend's was here with us all day a few days ago, her and her little family, and I was able to tell her this is how it is for me right here, right now. And she didn't say 'but what about your beautiful children?' or 'what about just trying not to feel that way' or any other pointless and ignorant one up. She heard me and she loved me, and that is all I want, and all most of us want. I was supremely grateful.
I am grateful for everything, for life itself. And, my heart, my poor red ragged heart missing half it's lung capacity in a terrible accident, it is working as hard as it can to beat on, to carry the ship of a universe of chemical storms and neurological misfirings and muscle bone and sinew and the entire ocean in my skin. The ocean inside of us, our spirits the sky overhead that falls in the rays of sun and water deep into that ocean, and our hearts, human and vulnerable and stronger than we think and more scarred than we often admit, our hearts a tiny ship in the vastness of ocean and sky.
I am acknowledging my heart.
Christmas was beautiful, even with the ship half sunk.
There is always help coming, and I am keeping my eye on the horizon.