Today I’m angry and frustrated about things that have nothing to do with the coronavirus. But being in an extended quarantine with a pandemic gripping the world, of course, can’t help but make everything a little worse.

In hindsight it seems timely that I wrote about acknowledging uncomfortable emotions in yesterday’s post, as I’m definitely struggling with them today; I had an argument with someone close to me, and it put me into a tailspin of irritation. A deeply upsetting conversation, or any forceful negative stimulus, can cause acute stress, and under normal circumstances I’m more able to accept and dissipate that stress so that I’m able to move on with both the relationship and my life. Given that we’re under chronic stress, however, has exacerbated the effect of those chronic stressors, and I feel unable to help myself.

I’ve always imagined acute stress as a sudden cortisol spike, a jagged peak in the geography of the mind. Chronic stress is somehow more insidious – a slight but endless slope covered in scree, a trudge in unsure footing. And today it feels like I’m trying to navigate both, an Everest of scree – exhausting and spirit-sapping.

Which makes me feel disappointed that I can’t devote more mental energy to other things that matter to me – which includes writing this post. I began this blog as an exercise in both transparency and discipline, and promised myself that I would write every day, for 21 days (the length of the original shelter in place mandate). And today, I have no carefully considered thoughts, or stories I want to share. Today I’m just a tired and distressed human, and I’m just going to have to be OK with that for the moment.

I think I’ll go out and look at the cherry blossoms down the street.

What are your greatest stressors these days? Are they dramatically different from your pre-COVID stressors?

My task for the day: I actually have two. The first was to cut my own bangs (done! and not so bad, if I may say so myself). The second is to calm myself down enough to be open to another conversation.(working on it!)

3 thoughts on “Human

  1. Art Brown says:

    You have your health, relative youth, talent, beauty, accomplishments, and your music brings much enjoyment to so many of us. I am sorry that you do not feel well. I hope it passes soon!


  2. “What are your greatest stressors these days? Are they dramatically different from your pre-COVID stressors?”
    Hello Maestra! Thanks for having written today even though it was a difficult one. You’re a fighter because it took a lot of your energy to create that post on your blog and you did. Bravo!
    Your beautiful picture reminded me of the Japanese trees when they blossom. If it is indeed a Japanese tree then I will look a bit retard. But hey, if it could make you laugh then it is no big deal for me.
    My greatest stressors these days are about seeing some people who still prefer to believe in a New World Order’s plot to kill people instead of listening to scientists in regard of the COVID19. This movement is spreading like the virus on multiple platforms (Youtube, Fb,…). They are not dramatically different from my pre-COVID19 stressors, though. They (stressors) are just slightly exacerbated. I see some ressemblance with the flat Earth’s believers and the Moon landing hoax’s believers. Geez! These people have a cell phone who works because of the roudness of the Earth and the space travel. Even if I said earlier that everybody was a cell in the body of humanity I would just add that some are nobraincell.
    You’re mention of the word stress brought back to my mind late Dr Hans Selye. He was a Montrealer (he was born in Vienna at the beginning of the 20th century) who developped the new concept of stress at the time. He wrote some books on that topic and Dr Boris Cyrulnik (neuropsychiatrist) is often referring to him. Dr Selye was even an inspiration for Dr Cyrulnik in his own development of the resilience concept and the plasticity of the brain. Dr Cyrulnik is a survivor of the holocaust.
    By seeing the date on your blog reminded me to not forget to call my bro for his birthday. He was born on April 1 (and it is not an April’s fool). Thanks because I would have forgotten to call him.
    Finally as was saying Charlie Brown: “Good grief.”


  3. Wayne Zelenak says:

    What are my greatest stressors these days has to be the lack of control and being quarantined and restricted like all of us in gatherings, entertainment, and dinner engagements with friends. Which brings me to some of your anger and frustrations mentioned in your narrative.

    When I was experiencing acute anxiety and depression, every disappointment, challenge, and difficulty was magnified tenfold. Although reading many books about low levels of serotonin in the brain and central nervous system, I understood how it affected many functions of my body including sleep insomnia, mood swings, appetite, and happiness, having adverse effects on my metabolism.

    To exacerbate things I was experiencing rapid weight loss, out of control, becoming weak physically and was losing my ability to focus on things with a smile. In this distressful condition, I spent short vacations at the beach, and rode my bike and watched sunrise and sunsets and marveled at the beauty of nature. I felt peace at last and the chains that held me captive so long were finally broken.

    Slowly things began to normalize with gaining weight, stronger appetites, and being able to focus on my family, friends, and activities. One of the things that really helped was to refrain from watching negative topics on the tv. Instead, I focused on books, interesting topics, and music.

    Over the years, I found how common these situations are in society, triggered by tragic situations like losing loved ones, and marital, financial and health problems. Acute depression and anxiety has no boundaries and affects all of us regardless of wealth, prominence, and social status. Having personally experienced the result of four suicides with family and friends over the years, I know the pain and have walked in the noir shadows of life and my passion is helping others through the storm by recognizing the red flags, being positive and being available 24/7 to listen and share my story.


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