Kite Truths | On Sadness

The last text I sent as sadness swallowed me was, “the darkness is winning,” but that isn’t what happened.

During the following weeks of wallowing, I found myself searching for phrases like, “cards to send when you’re down,” or “what to say when you’re depressed.” I felt an urge to be alone, and not be questioned, yet I yearned for connection. I sought the kind of relationship that comes from a pen pal or a thoughtful letter from a friend. It seemed that any text, email, or phone call would result in encouragement or condemn.

The only cards I found were addressed to the depressed. They are the cards say, “I can come over and not talk.” I didn’t want to receive a card; I wished to send thoughtfulness into the world without the possibility of an instant digital response, but I didn’t know what to write. I didn’t want to write. Like other brief moments in greeting card land, I wanted the card to say it for me.

I sunk further into sadness as I realized that, far from home, I struggled to find a connection. I isolated myself because I could no longer lie about how I was feeling or make small talk on the phone.

Prolonged sadness makes me feel like I can’t get out of bed. It’s like I am weighted down by existence. Then it makes me a liar because I pretend that I’m okay. Next, it makes me a disappointment because anyone I tell my truth to tries to prop me up and encourage me without success. At the darkest times, it makes me a loaner because I can’t bear letting everyone down any longer. That’s the moment sadness and loneliness converges, and their combined weight is like an anchor in the emotional darkness, the body is moving, but the mind is tethered.

The realization that I couldn’t find a card to mail first made me slump in my chair; then, it lit a tiny fire in my mind. I’ll create a card, I thought, but initially, I didn’t do anything. Slowly, I considered the idea that connection might be the difference between falling further and feeling better. It struck me that it was unlikely I was alone in this battle.

The idea that I was lonely, but perhaps not alone in my struggle, presented itself as a problem to solve and a topic to discuss. I told anyone that would listen that there wasn’t a card for me to send when I was hurting, and I was going to do something about it. I wanted notes that said, “I’m sorry I’m letting you down,” or “Thank you for caring,” or “I’ll be okay, please be patient.” Talking about the cards led to honesty about how I was feeling, a common ground with friends and connection, which created a path, and the darkness receded.

These cards are for you. They were created in the darkness and were brought to you when I found the light.  Hang one by your mirror to remind yourself that you’re going to be okay.  Add some text. Or simply sign your name. Ask for space or a hug. Remind yourself that you are not alone. Reconnect as slowly as you need and begin by sending this little Pine Kite. Available on the Etsy shop or purchase below.

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