Until I’m Not

I’ve been hanging on to my frags this week but not writing about them.

Because I’m sad.

I am sad. For several days in a row now. Doesn’t matter why; sadness is part of life. It is unavoidable. Everyone feels sad. Even happy people.

So, what to do about it? Nothing. There is nothing to be done about it. My wellness practice when I’m sad is to immediately cease and desist trying to treat the sadness or fix the sadness. Let the sadness be. Feel it. Wait. Carry on with the essentials of life but as for the sadness, let it be. Passing sadness is part of a cycle which needs to complete itself.

*My sadness does not come with the threat of serious illness or death, my sadness and I may safely wait together and do nothing. I do no things to mitigate the sadness. No numbing. No distraction. No lying about it. No faking it.

I don’t feel like running or writing, my two therapies of choice.

I got up early on Monday to run but there were thunderstorms. I tried to do yoga instead but after 45 minutes I stopped. I felt sad.

I got up early on Tuesday to run but I felt sad. I walked instead. Still felt sad.

I got up early again today but I still felt sad. I did nothing but be sad. Maybe it will lift tomorrow, maybe not. I will honor it either way.

I refuse to tell anyone I’m sad because everyone will itch to know why. Everyone will scratch at me, itching for a reason. They will guess, speculate, throw out suggestions. Is it this? Is it that? People can’t seem to help it. They also can’t seem to help wanting to help. I don’t know why I’m sad, which will either frustrate or alarm anyone who cares. I don’t want to be helped, which will frustrate or offend anyone who cares. So best to keep it to myself and wait.

Nothing is wrong with me.

I’m just sad.

It always passes. I have no reason to believe it won’t pass again. What I don’t have to do this time is figure it out or work it out. It feels better — I swear — just to let the sadness be. To honor it as part of a process rather than a crisis or a blight or a scourge. It’s a naturally occurring part of the human experience.

It’s not the end of the world. It is not the end of my happiness. It’s most likely not the end of anything. It’s just some sadness. Like a sore muscle, it will ease.

My wellness endures, even if I’m sad. Sadness will eventually recede. I’ll progress to something else. But no forcing it.

I forgive and absolve my genuine humanness. Sadness is not a flaw or a failure.  It will resolve itself. Puberty managed to come and go without my interference or intervention. Sadness will too.

This is the first time I’ve ever been comfortable with my sadness, which I suppose is why I’m writing about it this way instead of trying to write it away. I used to do that — write my way out of a funk — but not this time. I’m holding hands with sadness. I’m being still and relatively silent. I’m feeling it all and judging it not.

I shall not chase down my sadness to wring a confession from it. I shall not attempt to transform it into something else. I shall not root out shame or blame. I shall not torture my sadness, nor shall I kill it. I will simply be sad.

Until I’m not.

— Mercy


*I’m not qualified to speak to clinical depression or folks who with struggle with suicide. I am definitely not suggesting such folks should not seek help when they are sad. If this is you, ask for help. Don’t wait. Don’t do nothing. Practice what’s right for you, which at a minimum is wellness and life. Don’t suffer unnecessarily and don’t die. 

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