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From feelings to thought

It’s 8:00 on Wednesday. Vienna’s asleep and Lily’s curled up next to me. With an hour before Real Housewives start, I’m sitting in front of my

computer. The cursor has blinked a few times now. Or maybe hundreds. I’ve lost track as I sit and stare. Tonight, as usual, my mind is racing; thoughts and visions of past and present turning like colored clips in a kaleidoscope behind my eyes. Yet my thoughts are as blank as the screen I’m staring at. I feel this way a lot lately. Like my brain is playing late night TV and despite my sleep deprived eyes begging to close, to rest, they can’t. They continue to watch. But don’t ask my to tell you what’s happening, what was just said, because I have no idea. How can my brain feel so full but my thoughts come up empty at the same time?

Maybe because so much of those racing memory clips are driven by feelings. Deep, raw, unpredictable feelings. As we know, putting our feelings into thoughts, into words can be extremely difficult. And that is how I’m feeling tonight. Lately, I am overwhelmed with feelings I can’t quite seem to describe, to put into words, when I think about how this past month marked one year of COVID-19. Of a global pandemic, quarantines and lock downs, unknown and fear, inner growth and re-discovery. An unprecedented year both globally and personally. A year that began with Joe still in it.

I’m not completely sure why specifically this seems to be weighing so heavy on my heart these days. A part of me thinks it’s because, in a warped way, this is a journey that began with us together. We watched and waited, unsure and curious with the rest of the world. We sent each other articles with new updates during the day and debated, sometimes heatedly, on the couch over coffee on Sundays. We navigated pregnancy and bringing our first child into the world with Covid restrictions. It began a journey we were in together and it’s become a landmark in time Ive come to on my own.

That thought makes me feel extremely uneasy, anxious and unsettled. I guess in the end, while all of the above is true, the most honest, most simple reason this weighs so heavily, is because it’s milestone, another new, another day, without him. And this thought, I think, is often what kick starts my late night TV, kaleidoscope style, brain on overdrive. Snapshots of a year ago, now and all the time in between play on a loop and I can’t shut my eyes on reality, on life. So I’m forced to watch them over and over while simultaneously struggling to put these snapshots, these feelings, into coherent thoughts, into words.

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