It’s been three months since I’ve written a post. Honestly, it was the surprise receipt from WordPress notifying me that I was charged another $66 to keep my blog ad-free for another year that prompted me to open my account and write something, anything.
But I had been thinking about writing even before the receipt arrived. Or, more accurately, I had been thinking about not writing. I’m not really writing much lately. Of the thesis variety, I’m writing intensely, but of the musing/processing/journaling variety, nothing. Nary a word for months. Why?
I think it’s because I’m not sad anymore. A huge generalization, but in a way it’s true. I have volumes and volumes of journals and diaries from my life post-undergrad to about the end of 2018. Come 2019, when I was diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder and depression and started taking Lexapro to relieve these symptoms, my anxiety and depressive tendencies have all but vanished. In their place have come enormous relief, deep relaxation, simple happiness, and an enhanced capacity to work on my thesis and to develop and maintain meaningful relationships.
I do still feel “negative” emotions, such as grief, fear, and worry. The difference now is that these emotions are more easily attributed to specific events. I felt enormous grief when my brother shared with me that he and his wife were experiencing potentially unresolvable difficulties. I experienced great fear last night when my dog started exhibiting full-body spasms and I brought her to the vet (she’s fine now). I felt worry that, after submitting my thesis to my committee, their critiques would be too great for me to make the July 5th department deadline. But these feelings are specific and fleeting. I understand where they are coming from and how to care for myself when they arise. I rebalance quickly.
Before Lexapro, I experienced 13 years of anxiety, occasional depression, and confusion. I tried many practices—intensive meditation, yoga, running, counseling, reading, diet shifts—but nothing brought deep relief. I wrote and wrote and wrote about my sadness. I wrote about my darkness. I wrote in journals and on napkins and receipts and in letters and I wrote here, on this blog. But now, the urge to write about my experience has largely evaporated. My journals sit untouched. My blog remains un-updated.
What do I write about now? What is my impetus to write if not for relief from my sadness? How can I still translate my experiences in a way that can help or inspire anyone who comes upon my blog? I’m beginning to wonder about this. I know the answer is there.