Recently, my depression and anxiety has been at its worst; I’ve struggled to not feel like death and didn’t leave the house in ages. On this day (19/6), instead, I decided to get the cleaning stuff done early, have lunch at about 11am, then tied my hair in a bun, laced up my sneakers and went for a walk. Geographically, I knew there was a lake nearby, but (even though I’ve lived here for three months) I didn’t really know how to get there.
So I just wandered.
From the road I was on, I spotted a playground at the end of a lane-way and, behind that, the lake. My already comparably better mood vamped up even higher. I felt a natural smile and I even giggled a bit as I swung on the swingset and admired the lake.
After a while, I finally coaxed myself off the swing and went exploring, met some ducks, pelicans, seagulls, cockatoos and ibises, and v e r y carefully walked along a jetty. It was at that point, watching the seaweed sway in the water and listening to the birds squawk as they flew around me, where the tears started. Genuine happiness is a strange thing to deal with when your mind and body are against you, when your brain believes you’re constantly in danger.
Just that moment of realisation: I’m happy.
It’s a shock to the system. Even though you’ve experienced it lots in the past, it’s like you’ve been handed this screaming, flailing thing and you’re completely clueless as to what to do with it.
But I embraced it.
I let the tears flow and streak across my face in the wind, laughed at the small and pitiful tweet of a baby seagull trying to join in with the squawking adults, and relished in my happiness, in all its weirdness and beauty.