(Originally posted: 7/28/17)
Staunchly is back from summer vacation! To quote Duchess Kimberly Denise Jones: Been gone for a minute now I’m back with the jump off.
I spent June and July traveling (from Montecito to the Grand Canyon to New York), reading, processing, and plotting. I dyed my hair red, designed t-shirts, caught up with old friends, redecorated my apartment, bought plants, had my aura photographed (green, blue, and magenta!), watched that Vogue video of Celine Dion examining French fries in a couture swim cap probably 50 times, and spent several precious days near vast expanses of saltwater.
A summer that began inauspiciously in the Girl, Interrupted wing at UCLA Hospital has turned out to be…surprisingly fun! There have been dark moments, to be sure, mostly as I’ve tried to reckon with the new dynamics in my family brought to life by the same events that led me to the psych ward—all of which I promise I’ll write about/am writing about. On the whole, it’s been a restorative couple of months. For better or worse, I’m starting to feel like myself again.
And I have so many things I wanna talk about! The Grand Canyon. Girls Trip. The transformative power of weed lollipops. The heroic senator battling cancer that voted against the Obamacare repeal. How I finally watched Moana and identified strongly with the character of Maui. Pop-tarts.
Also: all the hard truths I’ve ~learned~ over the past two months about myself, my family, my relationships, my body’s response to trauma. Like how your body reacts to danger before your brain does. How, when you’re experiencing a break from reality—not a clean break; more like a me-at-night-buzzed-on-tequila-trying-to-cut-off-a-skin-tag-with-dull-kitchen-shears kinda break—your body gets almost unbearably hot and pops with adrenaline and your heart feels like a hibachi grill searing all the tissue around it. How no one in the ER really knows how to talk to psych patients.
And then there’s the thing about how the people you thought you could rely on won’t show up. And people you only know casually will be the surprise MVPs, maestre of empathy, literal life-savers. When the sirens quiet on your emergency, you will have to reckon with all this new intel—all these things you’ve learned about the powers and the limits of your friendships. A reckoning of fresh data is, I suppose, faithful to the origin of the word “emergency:” the state of something having been brought spontaneously into the light.
Rest assured, I’ll be muddling through all this messiness in the coming weeks, as well as resurrecting Staunchly Picks and spreading that resistance gospel and continuing to hawk my own merch.
Thank you all so much for reading and supporting Staunchly!