i haven't written or said much about charlottesville. i've consumed a lot. as i have written before, when things like this happen, when terribly sad, enraging, racist things happen, i go to twitter and refresh and refresh and retweet and retweet.
that was basically most of my saturday.
but i haven't written very much. i can't find new words. the angry, the sadness, the fear...it isn't new. it has been growing for years, as i've become more aware and as i've experience more bigotry and racism.
i can say it hurt(s). it enrage-s/d. it frighten-s/ed. and most important, it is not over.
this post is about this and not about this. it is personal. selfish even. it feels weird to talk and think about the personal when all of this is going on. but...
in some ways i think i felt both overwhelmed by it all and numb. like it got to be too much and suddenly my body switched into robot mode. into do-not-feel mode. but it couldn't look away. i continued reading and listening and taking it in. my boyfriend did his best to nudge me away throughout the weekend but i'd find my way back. i was numb and i wasn't. it hurt and it didn't.
if i'm honest, that has been where my body seems to have lived these last few months.
i've had a summer filled with amazing opportunities. i've been to new places and i've seen new things. i've gotten to feel like a real, productive playwright. i've gotten to be a tourist. instagram shows a lot of nice sunsets and good meals and waterfalls and selfies taken at the golden hour.
and that isn't a lie. it is just not the full story. because it never is.
the last few months i've felt like part of me is snowball rolling down a mountain, picking up snow and getting bigger and bigger and bigger. anxiety, depression, stress, general life stuff...bigger and bigger and bigger. it feels hard to hold up. it feels hard to carry. but it feels like if i drop it, all hell will break loose.
it is only really now hitting me that i am in what feels like a crazy unstable time. both in the world, but also at home. things are changing. for good reasons. for life reasons. things i thought would be happening now aren't. other things are. things i thought would be solved by now aren't. other things are. the more i delve into some things, the more i wish i hadn't, and vice versa. i find myself thinking a lot and, frankly, worrying a lot about the future in a number of different ways. that's not that new, but the things that feel worrying feel bigger than before. i am often asked what i am thinking about and it feels too much or too little or too stupid or too overwhelming or too personal or too disrupting to share.
i think i've written before about how i'm not sure i mourned my grandpa's passing. the last few months i've randomly called his voicemail to hear his voice. it just feels like i haven't talked to him in a while. i think the sadness lives in my chest and has been getting bigger as other worries and concerns have popped up concerning my family. there's a lot going on behind the scenes. much of it is not mine to share really. i don't know what i'm grieving anymore. maybe just what once was and now feels so far away. or maybe i am anticipating. or...i don't know. but there is so much going on and so much i can't do to help.
i was sitting and retweeting on saturday and watching and reading and thinking about everything. thinking about hatred and thinking about family and thinking about feeling helpless and thinking about fear and thinking about action and thinking about overwhelm and thinking about how i didn't feel good.
i thought about how all of this lives in our bodies. all of the personal stuff but also all those hateful signs held, those hateful words said, those hateful thoughts spread....they can get in our bodies and live there. they live in mine, reeking a havoc i haven't begun to parse. the pain felt by those physically harmed, the pain felt by those emotionally harmed, in our bones. i was thinking about how i've been feeling even worse since then. i've been thinking about how my body has already felt like it is crumbling under the weight of that damn snowball of emotion and how charlottesville felt like another roll down a particularly snowy mountain and the snowball just doubled in size.
and i thought about how i get up and do work and keep going. and i thought about how that is a good thing and how i am excited for the opportunities i have and have had. but i also recognize we can lose ourselves in the work. it can be a bandage over a wound that needs more time and attention. and i thought about just wanting to admit that sometimes it all feels a bit overwhelming.
i am overwhelmed.
i am in the process of fighting through that overwhelm. or rather finding ways to fight through that overwhelm. but, if i am honest, i am overwhelmed by the idea of fighting through the overwhelm.
and while i know i am not alone in the overwhelm, it feels quite lonely.
so i am trying to find the words so that i won't feel that way.