December 31, 2020

Written December 2020

The hardest year of my life was 2015.

At the time I remember feeling that I had lost myself. I was outside looking in. I was swimming in an ocean of emotional exhaustion so big I thought I would never get out.

I see pictures of myself then and I see it as a literal dulling of my appearance, especially in my eyes.

The emotional exhaustion never fully evacuated me, but I slowly and surely recovered. I became as the “before times Sophie”: gregarious, vivacious, curious. I see this in pictures of me over the past few years. My eyes were bright again.

Right before COVID-19 was declared a pandemic I finally felt recovered from what happened to me, the multiple things that happened to me, some self-inflicted and some not, 5 years ago.

Then... well, you know the story. This is the, or one of the, hardest year of all of our lives. We have lost access to the best parts of ourselves. We feel as if we are drowning in exhaustion. Our spirits feel dull, our hopes have been dashed, and our hearts broken. We have lost. We have suffered. And it’s not over yet.

There are many moments when I wonder if the abject emotional depletion hounding me since April is my new forever state. I remind myself I was here before and I made it out; I almost made it all the way out. It took time, it took perseverance, it took dedication, it took commitment. And with this vantage point I can say it wasn’t about finding myself but rather about discovering who I am to begin with.

This time the recovery, and the discovery, happens simultaneously with everyone around me. For the uninitiated, welcome to the start of the journey. It’s a long one, it’s a good one, it’s a hard one. Most importantly, it’s the only one available if you want to forge ahead.

Happy 2021.

Copyright © 2020 Sophie Nazerian