a lot has happened over the last eight weeks. for everyone, not just me. it’s been a swell of unprecedented emotions, all while battling a storm that none of us really expected. i will be honest with you- i never really had a chance to wrap my head around any of this. i was in the throes of sickness before the state even closed and was on my deathbed teaching sixth grade virtually while some were still in the classroom. it’s been a long two months. filled with a lot of new things for me. not only has my body gone through such unimaginable pain but my mind is struggling to take the experiences and file them away. over the last eight weeks, the outpouring of messages, phone calls, posts, shares and love has been incredible and heartwarming. but i have also experienced some less heartwarming stuff. messages and posts and videos that put me in boxes. like weak or undeserving. or my new favorite, infected with a fake virus. but i keep thinking back to something my psychiatrist said to me a few weeks ago when i called her crying hysterically over something someone had said to me. i was so exhausted from the world around me. tired of not being able to feel how i wanted to feel. breaking down on the inside but feeling like i had to brush off my experiences because it made other people scared or worried or uncomfortable. and i remember sitting on my bottom step and crying on the phone to her, just two days after seeing her for a virtual appointment. i told her that i was so tired. of everything. of the trauma. of the nightmares. of the judgement. of everyone analyzing everything that i say or do; virus related or not. some people were telling me that i needed to move forward with my life and others were telling me i needed to be more careful. some were asking too many questions and some people, dropped off the face of the earth. and i was just here, processing everything i had been through. everything i had heard and seen and felt all by myself. and my psychiatrist, who has literally been in my life since i was eleven years old, told me that everything that anyone says to me comes down a hallway. and it stops at a door. and if you decide to receive the negative energy or negative comment that’s standing in the hallway, then you are choosing to open the door. but you also have the choice, to leave it all on the other side of the door. to not give it any thought and to just keep it moving.

and the more i thought about it, the more i realized that she’s right! i have the biggest power in the world; the power to slam the damn door. to whatever the hell is behind it or on the other side of it. from the comments about me being weak and how that’s all part of the survival of the fittest to all the people who have left me high and dry during the hardest walk of life. from the shitty conspiracy theory videos that people share and think it’ll open my eyes to something different even though i had the virus and watched it attack my whole body for sixteen days in the worst way possible to not hearing from certain people while on my deathbed. to some people saying it’s time to move forward to some people saying i didn’t deserve to have a life saving drug because i took it away from those who use that drug for their regular health.

all of these things. these mean, cruel, hard to handle, upsetting, ugly things. they can stay exactly where they are. i can slam the door on anything that i choose to! i don’t have to accept the hateful things that are in my inbox or on my feed. i can move on without the people who disappeared when i needed them or disappointed me when i needed their support. i can walk away from those who are judging where i am in all of this and how i am healing. the door doesn’t have to stay open. the door doesn’t even have to be unlocked. this time is hard. for all of us. and we cannot control what other people say and do. and we cannot control how they feel about what we are going through. and we also can’t control how they react to our feelings and emotions. but we can control what leaves our doorstep. we can control how far these things make it into our hallway and what even gets the chance to knock.

we can also slam the door. who doesn’t love a good wall rattling, lights shaking, whole room quaking [that rhymes and i am pretty proud of it] door slam? because just like my trusty psychiatrist said, we don’t have to accept any negative energy. we really don’t. and frankly, right now- i have zero space for anything else. i am healing at my own pace and recovering from what has changed me forever. at first i was tiptoeing around it, making sure everyone else was comfortable with my healing process. but then i realized that it didn’t matter. i mattered. and i was so tired of the negative, harsh, unnecessary stuff traipsing all over my brand new welcome home mat.

so here i am. welcoming only anything that heals me, feeds my soul [i owe my late best friend for that one], helps me bloom, carries me higher or supports me. anything else, don’t let the door hit ya, where the good lord split ya. or however that saying goes.


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