This sadness feels so good. Sharp, pungent, penetrating, specific. To be able to feel a sadness that is about a particular set of events is a luxury. For a very long time I’ve been afraid of that brand of sadness that seems to be about everything. The despair that nothing is right at this moment in time, nor will it ever be. That overwhelming crush of grey that shrouds everything and covers me like a blanket. Underneath it, I curl up as small as I can and shiver from the exertion it takes to just be.
But this sadness is finite. I miss my girls. I left them at the campsite on Tuesday morning with their grandparents, headed home to get myself ready for a writer’s conference. They stayed to fish and roast hot dogs over the campfire and go on long, dusty walks with Gram. The house feels empty without them and the knowledge that it will be several more days before I feel their thin arms wrap around me and hear their trilling laughter pokes holes in my resolve.
Driving away from home I acknowledge the sharp sadness in my gut. I slowly push out to the edges of it, examining it for depth and breadth and discover, to my delight, that there are edges. There are boundaries to it. I can celebrate this feeling because it is distinctly different from despair. I am excited at the revelation that I can feel sadness without sinking in to depression. It doesn’t make me miss my lovely girls any less, but it gives me hope that I can allow a full range of emotions access to my core without the risk of being consumed entirely by them.