Today, I'm going to tell you about my pandemic tears that started in January.
At first, I thought these pandemic tears were from marking 5th anniversary of my mother's death...
And while of many of them stemmed from missing her so deeply...
These tears were different than ever before. There were more of them that took me over without hesitation.
Yet even though they were different, I treated them like I did in other years. I allowed my emotions to do what they needed to do until the anniversary date in April.
That's when things get back to normal. The tears always stop once the anniversary date passes.
But this year, normal didn't happen. The date came and went, but I kept crying…
And it got worse...
I felt listless and blah about my life, my business and everything in-between.
It was so odd.
I prayed and meditated on why it was happening because, by all accounts, pandemic-y things were looking up for me.
I was fully vaccinated. I felt less restricted. I could hang out at my favorite coffee shop, restaurant or at the home of friends and family without the fear of infecting or being infected…
So why did I feel so…
Recently, I’ve had conversations with friends who were experiencing similar things:
Clearly I wasn't alone. Others were feeling the same way I did.
I thought about it for a while and developed a theory. I think we’re suffering from...
The Pandemic Slump.
This isn't the obvious slump that happened when we saw no end to stay-at-home orders and behaviors that brought out the worst in us.
This slump is sneakier.
Because now, as more people get vaccinated and more states open up, we’re all lifting our heads to take a deep breath...
We’re having moments of hope and encouraging thoughts...
We’re letting our collective guard down, which makes us vulnerable...
And that’s when the stealth slump sneaks up and bite us in our behinds.
For me, I’m experiencing emotions that I’ve pent-up for over a year…
And they’re coming out through my eyes at the most unexpected times.
One person I talked to said, “I can’t stop crying. I don’t know what’s wrong. It’s so weird because I’ve never been depressed before.”
My reply was, “Yeah, well, that's probably because you’ve never been through a pandemic before.”
And that's a critical thing to understand.
Maybe you've never experienced extreme sadness or hopelessness...
Or maybe you don't have a tendency toward depression...
Or maybe you're not an overly emotional person.
When it comes to a pandemic, all bets are off.
Because no matter where you were in February of 2020, you became a different person in March.
So if you're more emotional than usual, don't let it worry or confuse you.
It simply means...
And, as humans, we have emotions...
Emotions that need to be acknowledged and dealt with.
You see, your emotions are coming up so they can get out of you.
If they come up and you accept them and let them do their thing, they're happy.
All they want is a little attention.
Basically, your emotions are like a 2-year-old toddler who desperately wants a hug.
Give them a hug and let them run around for a short while, and they'll be satisfied.
Then the next time they come up, they won't be as intense or uncomfortable. That's because you've diffused them with their first little hug.
If you keep accepting your toddler-emotions and giving them your attention with little hugs, they'll start subsiding. Eventually, they'll go off to play quietly by themselves.
However, when you ignore them or try to stuff them down, your emotions will come back stronger and harder than ever before.
Think Glenn Close's character in Fatal Attraction:
Yep. They can be that scary!
So, if you feel out of sorts, relax and give yourself a little space to experience what's going on inside you. It's okay to feel what you feel.
Acknowledge your emotions. Give them your consideration and little hugs as needed.
And know that this small bit of attention will benefit you in the long run...
Because it's better than road rage or kicking the cat.
Let me know if you, too, are in a Pandemic Slump and how you're giving your emotions little hugs when they're demanding your attention.
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Until next time…
Have a Refreshing and Peaceful Day, Z
I have a LOT more to share with you about maximizing our lives as we age. And, because you’ve proven you’re a true Easy Ager by reading this blog, I’ll give you even more tips and strategies in my Easy Aging™ Facebook Group for folks 45+ years old. Come on over and join us — We'd love to see you there!
#pandemictears #emotions #mentalhealth