What sounds like rhymes straight out of a Pete the Cat children’s book are the sounds my emotions make as I hit the wall – the quarantine wall. This week has been especially tough as restrictions and contradictions spawn confusion and uncertainty only intensifies rather than dwindling. Days and nights blend. Work-life and home-life are intimately intertwined with no boundaries. Lines are blurred. Roles coalesce. Transitions no longer exist. There is no “How was work, mommy?” or “How was school today, sweetie?”
I’m tired. I’m tired of working from home, but I’m scared of returning to my clinic, too. I’m tired of Zoom calls. I’m tired of homeschooling my children. I’m tired of cooking breakfast, lunch, and dinner every single day. I’m tired of washing dishes five times a day. I’m tired of the murder of unarmed black men, women, and children – #AhmaudArbery. I’m tired of wayward emotions, mental fatigue, and managing my disbelief at the circumstances in which we find ourselves. I’m tired.
I miss my friends. I miss my parents. I miss my sister and my niece. I miss my parents-in-love. I miss my colleagues and my coworkers. I miss face-to-face contact with my patients. I miss tight hugs. I miss couples’ dates and girls’ night out. I miss facials and massages. I miss summer vacation. I miss baseball games and dance recitals. I miss my gym and 5 am workouts with my crew. I miss my bronzy spring highlights. I miss the throng of children playing together behind my house, their laughter, their energy. I miss so much.
I hit an emotional wall today. I stumbled when my heart hit the wall. Shoulders slumped and tears welling in my eyes, I sank to the floor. I whispered to my husband, “I need a break. I need space from my children, and they need space from me. I need not to think; I need no to do; and I need to not be needed by anyone. I just want to BE.”
No, it’s not like this every day. Honestly, I’ve been pretty good. Sure, there have been hiccups here and there with an occasional freak out but otherwise steady plodding while focused on the beauty that I know lies on the other side of this calamity because I serve a mighty God and I have practices in place that keep me grounded. But the wall still materialized. It crept up slowly, its insidious grip encircling my mind; overwhelming my hopeful heart; and tearing at my intellect. It pushed. I caved.
Writing is cathartic for me, creating a vast expanse for me to pause, ponder, and sort through the myriad of emotions tugging and pulling at my calm and my peace. So I share the words on my heart because my healing comes through owning my vulnerability. It’s not always easy to admit that I don’t have it altogether, but it’s my truth. Though my steps my falter, I am filled with faith. Though I sometimes grow weary, I remain encouraged. Though my unease waxes and wanes, I find peace in prayer and the word of God.
But I still hit a wall today.
And yet I know that I will be okay. His mercies are new every morning. Tomorrow is a new day.