DISCLAIMER: I’m about to get uncomfortably real here for a second. Bear with me.
Today, I am not okay.
In fact, I feel about as far from okay as a person can get.
I’m homesick for a place that’s 14,397 kilometers away; I’m struggling to sleep and eat; and I’d like nothing more than to give the world and my new ten-second rule a callous middle finger.
Should I really be blogging then, if I’m feeling this disconnected from myself? Yes, for two reasons.
First, writing is the means through which I and countless others heal, cope, deal, and dope. I would and will never abuse this blog as a platform upon which to dump and ditch personal issues, but I also cherish the productive catharsis of self-expression. My personal and professional livelihoods depend on it, really.
In a roundabout way, this brings me to my second reason: we learn by feeling. When we engage in the art of processing painful experiences, we open doors that can lead to important discoveries—about us, our surroundings, our relationships, and even about broader social, environmental, and political issues.
Unfortunately, there is no “right” way to process pain. As long as you’re digging in, it doesn’t matter if you’re using a spoon, a fork, a knife, or your hands.
Prefer to eat alone? Fair enough. For me, I crave connection.
I was fortunate to have a rich and layered discussion—sprinkled with just the right amount of feminism—with a friend from home yesterday (you know who you are, you unicorn). She and I covered a lot of ground in not a lot of time, but everything we talked about rounded back to the idea of kinship. You might have a blogger network, a book club, a running partner, or that group of gals you know will always be up for a(nother) boozy brunch. When it comes to kinship, it’s not the composition that matters; it’s the connection.
…it’s a bit like wi-fi, only offline.
If you’re not okay today, then that’s okay. But even if you’re having the best day of your life (and if so, please send some of that sweet, buttery goodness my way), challenge yourself to check your wi-fi connection. You might be pleasantly surprised to discover the signal is stronger than you think.