I feel awful right now. Not physically. Physically I am well, so far. I have no signs of ill health.

But I cry every single day. Often more than once. There are days when I am so tired of struggling with it all–the Coronavirus, the world’s political and economic situations, the causes I care about, the hopelessness and the fear and the paranoia and the infighting and the censorship.

I used to want to shout from the rooftops the truths I have learned—that we become what we focus on, and so we must believe in wonderful possibilities as well as awful ones, because they are just as real. I used to want to shout that most people are good. I wanted to shout that we should stay home to flatten the curve, that it’s not just hype, that we will save lives by doing so…maybe our own.

I don’t want to shout anymore. I feel awful. I am tired of struggle, and the negativity I perceive in the world right now. Sometimes I want to lay down and not get up.

You know what keeps me going? That I know I’m supposed to feel awful right now. We all are. This is me, speaking to me, as well as to you who may read this. This is Roz giving Roz a pep talk, feel free to listen in.

If you feel terrible, Bravo.

It means that you and your emotions are working just fine. You are supposed to feel terrible in a pandemic. You are supposed to feel scared, and defeated, and depressed amidst the hope and other emotions that you have. You are supposed to cry a lot, and want comfort, and rail against the futility of it all.

As soon as you try not to feel these things, you isolate yourself from the world, because everyone else is feeling awful, too. Everyone is scared. Everyone is hopeful. Everyone is trying the best that they can to do what they feel they need to for themselves and their loved ones. Everyone is clueless about how to act and feel and what to do if we can’t leave home and have to shelter in place.

So don’t try not to feel awful. Cry. Feel terrible. Talk to your sister, your mom, your best friends, your partner, your spiritual guidance on phone and Zoom and Facetime. Pray, meditate, do your yoga stretches and your Pilates and take your distance walks as long you are allowed to, so that your awful is shared, and not isolated awful. So that you know that you are never truly alone. So that you know that awful is OK. So that you know that awful is part of being human, and being human is a part of being loved.

Rosalyn Dischiavo

Dr Rosalyn Dischiavo

Dr. Rosalyn Dischiavo EdD, MA, CSES, is a sexologist, professor, former family therapist, and a professional sexuality educator. She is the Founder & Director of Institute for Sexuality Education & Enlightenment, and the author of “The Deep Yes, the Lost Art of True Receiving.” Dr. Dischiavo is also currently President of the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists (AASECT) as well as past Professional Education Steering Committee Chair on the Board of AASECT. She is a Certified Sexuality Educator and a Certified Sexuality Educator Supervisor.

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