Crying Under a Tree: Pandemic Fatigue and High Functioning Depression

Posted on Oct 13, 2020

A month ago I noticed an odd low-level depression that wouldn’t quit. It was like the whole world went gray without me noticing. It was deep in my body. From my temples to my throat and into my diaphragm and hips.  

It has been a hard year for sure. As SNL (Saturday Night Live) said in their news skit, “2020’s got moves”.

I thought it couldn’t get any worse than isolation, my ex-boyfriend’s father dying, breaking up with said ex boyfriend after almost three years. A man I truly love (but am not compatible with). My mother being 3,000 miles away, my dog dying, and then having to pack my car for possible evacuation in devastating fire emergency. I couldn’t breathe for days as the city became dense with toxic smoke and it seemed all the joy left in my body. My life had become an apocalyptic country song.

After the smoke finally cleared I thought I would feel better, but my inner world was lost. The fear of losing my home, the continued pandemic with warnings that it’s going to get worse in fall/winter, the election drama, and the loneliness had taken refuge inside of my heart, mind and soul in a heavy way. 

I did what I always do: I told myself to “buck up butter-cup” and deal with it. I stayed grateful in my gratitude journal, I kept praying out loud and tried to enjoy my life again. I tried to take solace in my new amazing dog, Morris, and began walking more now that the air is clear. I even reached out to friends to create connection. I checked off all the boxes: eating well, exercise, reaching out, being creative, writing, etc.

But I wasn’t okay. Something in me would not let go of the emotional pain.  

Then I read about pandemic-fatigue and high functioning depression. Signs of this include changes in eating and sleeping habits, low self-esteem, fatigue, hopelessness, and difficulty concentrating. Symptoms persist on most days, causing a nearly constant low mood that last for days, weeks, months and can persist for years if not recognized. Most people function almost normally but struggle internally.

This was me: on the outside I look fine, happy, and motivated.

On the inside: I was struggling.

I decided to go out to my car for fresh air and to grab a pack of gum that was in the car. 

As I walked past the trees, things started to move in slow motion. I felt like I was hovering over myself. It was trippy. I looked at my feet and sneakers. I saw my arms listless at my side.  I noticed my posture was terrible. My shoulders were hunched and my head was down. I didn’t recognize myself. 

I heard a voice inside of me say, “Please look up.” I looked up and just at that moment I saw a white cloud split open through the trees. A ray of sunshine pierced down from the sky, through the clouds, past each branch and onto my face. The warmth felt almost foreign to me. My body relaxed and I heard myself say out-loud:

“God, please remove my resistance to joy.” 

As soon as I said those words vertigo took over. I got dizzy. I reached out to steady myself leaning on the giant cedar tree next to me. I started to cry. I cried in a way I haven’t cried in a very long time. The crying was so deep, so guttural, so buried. 

I became weak in my knees and cried for almost 45 minutes. I didn’t realize I had been holding in my pain, fear, heartbreak, frustration, and sadness. I had gotten used to living with my body tensely gripped and ready for something bad to happen. The crying came out in wails, and in sounds I didn’t recognize. I felt my heart break open. I am lucky to live on 1/3 acre where no one would hear me because the crying was primal. I let my snot fall to the ground and I wiped my eyes with the sleeve of my shirt. I let God and nature help me spill out all of my fear. 

Finally, when the crying stopped, I rested my head on the tree. A sense of peace was slowly restored in my chest and tingled down through my whole body. I felt lighter. It was as if someone had removed a heavy backpack.  

“What now?” I asked God. 

“Now, write. Laugh. Help others. Share your story.” 

The message was clear. God had helped me lift my vibration and remove my resistance to joy. I smiled. Morris my dog ran up to me with a smile. Something changed. 

Our true work in life is to keep lifting our frequency, because everyone in our life is lifted up as a result of the vibration we are emitting. Caring for yourself means caring for the world. 

This too Shall Change. Pandemic fatigue and depression is going to get worse before it gets better. This is something I want to help people to get through so…. 

IMAGINE THIS VERSION:
You can see yourself writing and feeling happy and fulfilled. You are holding your book in your hands, or writing a blog that you’ve been dying to create, or maybe you finally put together a non-fiction book to help your sales. In this new future (which can happen right now) it’s exciting. You feel a swelling in your chest as you breathe into this new version of yourself. This is a joyful, tingling feeling. Emotionally, this is a place of tremendous creativity.

OR….

ARE YOU STUCK IN THE FEAR-BASED VERSION OF YOURSELF:
It’s natural for the conservative part of your brain to tell you to knock it off. Quit dreaming. Don’t invest. Don’t experiment. Don’t try anything new. This part of your brain is trying to keep you “safe.” Emotionally, the feeling is fear, but it sometimes masquerades as “logic” or “common sense” or thoughts like, “now’s not a good time.”

In times of stress, it is natural to fall into fear. 
In times of great opportunity, it is natural to want to expand.

As it happens, we are experiencing both right now.

And while there is no “right” answer, I want to remind you that nothing NEW ever got created from a place of hiding.

So if you want to feel better and create something you’ve always wanted to create…

If you want to experience a quantum shift…

If you want to fight fear with creativity…

Then please start writing, create, go out in nature, do whatever it takes to make yourself open to joy and ask God and the Universe to remove your resistance to Joy.

Or you can say YES to my invitation to this Saturday’s workshop. It will fill fast. This workshop will not only help you write and change your life, but it will shift your vibration!!!! >>>Spend a half-day with me<<<< (Limited to 20 people. A few spots left) 

“Writers Who Write Together Thrive Together!”

FREE 3-Day
Break Through Resistance
Training for Writers

In this FREE training you will learn:
1) Three key steps to break through writer's block
2) How to embrace the unknown with certainty and ease
3) How to relieve anxiety and be unstoppable as a writer
DOWNLOAD NOW
close-link
Would you like to schedule an exclusive 1-on-1 coaching consultation with Dawn?
 
close-link