Tired just doesn’t cut it anymore. I’m sick of hearing myself say that, in fact.
“(Sigh.) I’m just so tired.”
No, no. I have to remind myself—this isn’t tired.
We are so far beyond tired.
This is an exhaustion that permeates our very bones. It’s a fatigue that has shackled our bodies, an ennui that has sucked any trace of coherent thought out of our minds.
We can’t concentrate, we can’t get work done, we can’t get off our phones, but we find no satisfaction or enjoyment in what we find on them.
I don’t remember the last time I was fully at peace.
The last time I wasn’t worried and didn’t stay up late mulling over things I can change and even more things I can’t.
I feel anxious all the time, but it’s not a “maybe I should be on medication” type of anxiety. It’s a “the whole world feels doomed” type of anxiety.
And before you ask—yes, I take breaks. I find time to recharge. I shower every day, exercise, breathe in fresh air, detach myself from social media. I step away.
Yes, I practice “self-care” or whatever that looks like right now.
But it is not enough.
It. Is. Not. Enough.
And it won’t be enough.
Not as long as we ignore systemic problems within this country.
Not as long as we fail to hold people accountable for their actions.
Not as long as we continue to tear each other apart for differing viewpoints.
Not as long as we elect a government that doesn’t have our best interests at heart.
Not as long as women and mothers bear the mental load of this pandemic.
Not as long as the most vulnerable and powerless among us are suffering.
Not as long as we deny that our planet is in very real danger.
Not as long as we put our egos and pride before grace and humility.
Not as long as we stay apathetic to anything that doesn’t directly impact us.
And not as long we forget that our children are looking to us and watching how we respond to ALL OF IT.
Let me say that again: Our children are watching.
We are the ones who determine what kind of world they inherit, and what the future holds for them.
We are the ones who stand on the brink of a precipice and are trying to figure out whether to jump.
We are carrying the weight of the world right now, so that our children can build a better one.
I truly believe that.
So no, I’m not “tired.”
Tired just doesn’t even begin to cover it anymore.
Tired doesn’t cover what we are dealing with, and it doesn’t cover what is at stake.
It doesn’t cover the pressure we feel to make the right choices, or the devastation we experience when others try and undermine them.
It doesn’t cover the unbearable disappointment—
In people we thought were friends.
In toxic family members.
In our local communities.
In our governments.
In our leaders.
Sometimes even in ourselves.
All we can hope for is that somehow this will have been worth it.
That there is a higher purpose. That righteousness will prevail. That we will persevere. That justice will be served.
And that our children will take the scorched earth we have burned to ash,