There’s stuff I can’t talk about (because it’s not my stuff to share). Then there’s the loss of my mother (which doesn’t stop happening even months after it’s happened). There’s the pain that comes from reading the news–from chanting neo-Nazis to environmental devastation. And while I know I have it better than most, so many times this year, I’ve had to drag myself out of a deep pit of despair. I’m someone who spends most of her days doing challenging physical work, so I can tell you that this emotional effort of lifting myself back up can be as hard to do as any chin-up, as any handstand, as anything I’ve ever attempted on my mat. Sometimes it would seem easier to just wallow at the bottom of the pit, and sometimes I have. For an afternoon. For a day. But I can’t do that for long–because I have a family who relies on me, because I have a job that requires me to lift others up (and it doesn’t work when I’m down), and, frankly, because I don’t want to live my life at the bottom of a pit. But mostly because the longer I stay in the pit, the more comfortable it becomes down there, and the harder it is to climb the fuck OUT. To those suffering deep within their own pits, I feel you. I see you. I wish you strength, because strength is what it takes. Build those emotional muscles, find the tools that help you climb, don’t think of yourself as broken, and for God’s sake, don’t get comfortable.