I remember the ache. I remember how it badgered me one morning at the breakfast table, the song from Sesame Street popping up in my head: Which one of these things is different? Which one of these things just doesn’t belong?
homemade banana pancakes
vermont maple syrup
a sweet family eating breakfast together
It was the ache. It should not have been there. I remember feeling like a royal criminal for being incapable of adoring this beautiful, still-frame moment in which I had everything I could ask for. What was wrong with me? Why was there an ache, a dullness inside of me?
I’m certain that if I had not had the support from a community of wise women around me, and the fortunate ability to create consistent downtime in my week, I would have been one out of the every four women in America on psychiatric medication. In a recent New York Times article, Medicating Women’s Feelings, author and psychiatrist, Julie Holland explains how this medicated normal is at odds with women’s biology. I hope you’ll click on the link, along with this follow up from my friend who shares what anti-anxiety pills did for her (got her through severe panic attacks), and what they did not do for her (change her life). Neither article is shaming, but rather a reframing.
So, we’re chucking perfect together and continuing this conversation. We can shift perspectives on how we feel, whether you are a mom or a dad feeling anxious around the pressures of work and money, of getting the children fed and the laundry done…whatever the feeling, we need new guiding questions, a new way to understand something that effects us all.
What is wrong with me? is the wrong question. Holland says that brain and body chemicals are meant to be in flux. Accepting our gloomy moods as a natural part of our biology is a big first step, and it opens up all sorts of possibilities:
What if these were normal states that don’t need to be fixed?
What if these states were actually very fertile and can catalyze positive change?
What if it’s worsened by trying to comprehend, control and resist natural feelings?
And an even bigger question-
What if our low states were a part of the creative process?
And an even bigger question still-
What if by trusting these states of being, we allow something creative to come through?
And bigger still-
What if it is in this deep acceptance of our natural rhythms (and life’s) that we harness our true potential?
Because we allow the creative process to work through us.
Because what if it’s more a question of expression, not depression?
And what if the world is waiting for our unique expression?
Maybe the future’s not stark,
maybe in the dark
there’s nothing wrong
maybe a new kind of strong
is incubating, updating, resonating
we are mutating
What do you think? Could your low state be telling you something new wants to express itself? Can you trust it? If you need support with medication, can it serve as a bridge to bring you back to your rhythm?
I encourage you to contribute your thoughts in the comments below.
If you’re a mom (local to Jacksonville) in need of downtime to connect with yourself, please consider joining us for Deep Relaxation & Connection.