Getting Out From Under a Pile of Sad.

Getting Out From Under a Pile of Sad

What a wild five months it’s been. I feel like I have about 8,000 personalities. Or maybe just three or four. There’s the negative me who hates this. There’s the hopeful me who thinks about how much better we’ve all become as people and feels optimistic. Then there’s productive me who has gotten completely caught up on life admin, redone her finances, scrubbed the whole apartment, groomed the cat, done multiple closet clean outs, and learned how to make bread. There’s also introvert me who sometimes doesn’t actually even mind quarantine. We contain multitudes, that’s for sure.

The thing I hadn’t planned for was that month 5 would be the hardest month of all, even as things have been (in New York) slowly getting better. I think in my head it would all be “fixed” and back to normal by the end of June. I am exasperated and for lack of a better word, over. it. It’s hard to pinpoint exactly why this month felt so bad. (Believe me, I’ve spent way too much time thinking about that!)

Getting Out From Under a Pile of Sad

It’s weird when I compare what’s happening now with the beginning of quarantine. In the beginning, everything was closed and I was fully isolated in my apartment. I had been dating someone I really liked and he more or less ghosted me (it’s more complicated than that but I’m simplifying the story as there are personal details I can’t share). All my brand projects were postponed or cancelled. Every other day there was a new article about the demise of influencing/blogging as a career. I was terrified and anxious but still at least felt like myself. Now, things are finally getting better but I feel… worse? WTF!!! It’s confusing!

On top of feeling shitty there’s an added layer of guilt for feeling so sad and down when I know how lucky I am. My business is doing pretty well. The “end of the influencer” articles have stopped. My parents are healthy. I have friends I can see. And New York is finally opening up again. FFS, my hair even looks good and I no longer have cavewoman feet. So I have been feeling very down and depressed with this layer of guilt over feeling bad. I think the lesson here is that you can appreciate how lucky you are, but still feel like crap. This week I finally started to feel a little bit more like myself again. Not 100%, but the dark cloud that’s been hanging over my head for the past 3-4 weeks has moved over a little and the sun is starting to shine again.

The hardest thing, hands down, has been not seeing my parents.

This is the longest we’ve gone without seeing each other face to face and I hate it. We had a lot of fun things planned and of course cancelled all of them for very good reason. The second hardest thing has been mourning my dating life. It’s hard not even having a tiny crush. I said this in my Q&A, I like attention and have zero crushes, zero boys to text, and zero occasions to meet people. It’s a big zero across the board.

I feel unsettled and unsure of whether I want to stay in New York long-term.

I’m so lucky to live in Brooklyn and have a pretty spacious apartment for New York standards, but one of the reasons New Yorkers deal with all the annoying things they deal with (especially small apartments and high rents!) is the access we have and how incredible the city can be. The museums and the art and the food and just… the magic of the city. I was talking to a friend about this and he had a smart way of thinking about it: right now, for those of us who don’t consider ourselves to be NYC  lifers, the pandemic has definitely sped things up.

I’d thought I’d leave New York in maybe five years but it was always a very loosely constructed plan. We’ll see. I want to live close to my parents. I love the idea of being able to see them regularly, of weekly Sunday dinners. Part of getting them to move to Charleston was because I ultimately want to end up there. But I’ve never really felt fully ready to leave New York until more recently. I’m still not fully ready. But I’m thinking about it more! So that’s been on my mind a lot. (Please don’t hold me accountable for this statement or ask follow-ups; who knows how I will feel in a couple months… I’m just sharing!)

Anyway, I’ve been feeling very sad, and very sorry for myself.

There are days where I truly just want to stay in bed all day. I don’t, because I have to support myself and feel grateful to be busy with work right now… but there have been a lot of days where I’ll finish my work and just crawl under a blanket to be sad. Yesterday afternoon I was looking for the cat. He was under the bed. It was nice and cool under the bed. I laid under the bed with him for a little while before feeling pathetic.

As I mentioned above, something shifted this week and I started feeling more like me. A part of this has been faking it a little. This may be bad advice but I do find that maybe faking a good mood is the way to get into an actual real, good mood? Making myself smile and laugh, to the point where eventually I actually feel happy. Does that make sense? Do I sound crazy? Maybe a little of both but I hate feeling negative, I hate feeling hard to be around, and I also realize that everyone is “in it” right now… we all have our own struggles and sadnesses and are grieving different things and it feels super selfish to lay that onto anyone. But I wanted to share a few things that have helped me, so maybe if you are feeling this way… they’ll help you too?

Things that helped (Besides Faking It):

Doing something nice for someone else.

Earlier in the week I made a birthday care package for a girlfriend and sent some books to friends and family who I thought would enjoy the books. It’s a tiny thing but made me so happy. Doing something nice for someone else always helps me feel a little better. It gets me out of my own little bubble and thinking about me, me, me.

Focus on those micro-highs.

We talked about micro-highs in this instagram post. I am a big believer that giving yourself tiny little things to look forward to (as simple as fresh flowers or a favorite old movie or a call with a long-distance bestie) is the best way to get through a longer stretch of hard times.

Learning about something new.

That is where Masterclass has come in! It’s been really fun spending a little time every day learning something new.

Meditating

I still do Headspace at least once a day and it’s so helpful. Between the daily meditations and the evening wind downs, it helps with better sleep, stress-relief, (low grade) depression and anxiety… all of it!

Journaling

Writing in my journal has been really cathartic. I’d always thought that I didn’t really need a journal as I have a blog and write a lot here but that’s highly incorrect. The journal is for venting and putting down my worst thoughts.. Or mundane ramblings. The stuff I need to get out that nobody else needs to EVER  read!

Doing something creative.

One of the best days was spent making beaded necklaces. Such a small thing but I am making it a goal to do something creative every week, even for just an hour.

Talking to a friend outside your usual friend group.

I was at a point where I felt like I was really burdening my closest friends (Becca and Alex). They never would have said so but I just felt like a total Eeyore. And I had been trying to make plans with my friend Emily for a while but I couldn’t get my act together to make plans. I knew I was being flaky so was just really honest with her. I apologized for my flakiness and told her how awful and depressed I had been feeling. And it turned out she’d been feeling the exact same way.

I am not great at opening up to others (except my poor best best friends), but I can’t tell you how much it helped to be a little vulnerable and find out she was feeling the same way too. We got those drinks (and then dinner the next week) and it really helped my state of mind.

I hope this post was not too whiny and that it was helpful. The reason I share these things is not to be a spoiled and whiny brat or because I want advice (I truly don’t!), but more for solidarity? Because I know a lot of you are probably feeling the same way and when I feel shitty, it helps me to see someone else feeling the same way. And based on my instagram messages after last weekend’s Q&A, I can tell a lot of you are feeling exactly the same as me. In which case, I send you a giant hug. This will pass. I said this in another post but one of the best things that has come with age is realizing that everything is fleeting and that the harder times always improve. xoxo

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Comments

  1. Patty says 7.31.20

    Girl. I know exactly how you feel. We all do! I’ve been up, down, all around. I’m going down the Cape on Sunday and I’m SO excited… but also feeling really guilty and nervous. We booked it back in May thinking the same thing as you: we’ll be back to normal by AUGUST! But here we are, cases are rising (granted, not so much in the Northeast) and it’s all just so unknown. And then I have the guilt of, “Do I share on social media that I’m away with friends or will everyone judge us and think we’re not taking it seriously?” We are!! We have HOUSE RULES! I even bought mask favors instead of the usual KOOZY.

    This is such a weird time. You are not alone.

    Also, I’ve been taking a Science of Well-Being class through Yale (it’s free!) and it’s SO INSIGHTFUL. Tons of brain science and happiness habits that have been helping me!

    • Rachel says 7.31.20

      thanks for sharing the Yale class – excited to look into it!

      • Tiffany says 8.2.20

        There’s a corresponding podcast for the Yale happiness course – The Happiness Lab. They’re interesting and thoughtful episodes. I like to listen to episodes both regularly or strategically, like when need a purposeful reset or some helpful reminders.

  2. Kristen says 7.31.20

    Solidarity for sure! I channeled you this week and gave myself an afternoon to read in bed (luxury!) Reading on the couch, normal. Bed…special. (This is how my brain works.) Onward! xo

  3. Marcella says 7.31.20

    Same… I’ve been thinking like, can I do this for another year ????? Pessimistic I know but I live in Texas where it’s a literal hellscape. I would love to get my nails done or go to a restaurant like y’all in NYC!! it definitely is just trying to take it day by day. My newest additions to my bedtime routine are an essential oil diffuser I got from target + reading on my kindle before I sleep. It helps a lot, I turn on my diffuser before I shower so when I come back to my room it feels very zen. I also found that if I was anxious about someone then calling that person would help a lot and make me feel better (like my grandma, who I called at 9:30 pm one night lol).

  4. Julie says 7.31.20

    I’ve never commented on your blog before but am a loyal reader. This post was spot on to how I’ve been feeling. I think the hope of things getting better was pushing me through before, and now seeing things get more back to normal but still nothing like how they were before is depressing. I’m going to try your tips – thank you for sharing!!

  5. I’m glad you feel better now! You’re really strong – thanks for being an inspiration! ❤️✨

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
    http://charmainenyw.com

  6. Molly says 7.31.20

    Totally understandable! Not being able to see your family is hard! I am still doing okay, but it is getting frustrating to watch my social media feed fill up with people traveling, eating out, gathering, etc. and I’m still pretty hunkered down (I’m in GA, which isn’t doing great). I know it is so hard to know what to do right now, and I don’t want to judge anyone (except maybe the mask-less 😐 ), but it makes it harder to stay home when it looks like everyone else is out and about. For me, my long runs have been such a saving grace and also turning off the news really helps. And sometimes I just take a drive around because I miss my car haha. Hope you have a nice weekend!

    • Emily says 7.31.20

      Oh Grace, I really feel you! Thanks for being so honest with how you are doing. I’ve been feeling kinda the same way, I’m mad at myself for being naive at the start of this and thinking we’d be back to normal by now. I live in London and feel similarly that it’s sped up my timeline for deciding whether to stay or not. All the things I love about London are still closed (or if they’re opening, I’m not ready to go!), and ive thankfully been above to work from home throughout. It really does make you think – why am I paying nearly half my salary for a tiny flat just to be here?
      Anyway my micro highs are the same – I’ve been nesting hardcore and having clear outs/cleaning loads, plus buying flowers and getting photos printed and framed. Plus the podcast! Thats really keeping me level these days.

    • Grace says 7.31.20

      I feel this every single day. You are not the only one still being safe. ❤️

  7. Jada says 7.31.20

    Thank you for this post! Trust me when I say you are not alone in those feelings.

    https://thegirlfromconnecticut.com

  8. Katie says 7.31.20

    Thanks for sharing! I found July to be my worst month yet of the blahs and then feeling guilty. I don’t know if it’s because it’s summer, but not really, This pause has sped up a lot of decisions. I think it’s driven home what matters to us all. I think a lot of people want normalcy again, but not parts of their pre-covid life such as a long commute, etc. There was a great article in the Washington Post last week about this topic. I have an hour of feeling ok and then it hits me this is all going on. I hope this is our first and only pandemic. If it causes us to make decisions that bring us more joy, that’s one big silver lining. On multiple levels, we’ve all had to face how short and precious life can be. Thanks for being so honest and real.

  9. Diana says 7.31.20

    100% agree with absolutely every single word! I’m also 38, single, live in Brooklyn and could have written this almost verbatim. All of the things that were “fun” in March (cooking! New indoor workouts! So much time to watch tv alone with zero judgment!) are just OLD these days. It IS helpful to know others are in the same boat. I highly recommend a day trip to the beach or upstate if you can for a change of scenery- makes a world of difference! Hang in there- I so appreciate your honesty!!

  10. Jess says 7.31.20

    You are spot on here. I think in some ways the first few months we were all running on adrenaline and making the best and now adjusting to the new normal (that isn’t normal at all) is adding a new level of acceptance about this situation and it’s hard. Thanks for sharing, I’ve had a rough week too. Taking some of your advice and know it will get better .

  11. Heather Watson says 7.31.20

    Oh my goodness, you’ve captured so much of my own emotion over the past few months! I’m a blogger and freelance writer — the early contract cancellations and “end of the influencer era” articles were such a depressing blow!

    This month has brought hand surgery for me, along with a lengthy recovery. Add in living in Louisville, where the city refuses to address the murder of Breonna Taylor, and I’m going nuts! Trying to focus on family, friends, my dogs, and reading as much as possible!!!

  12. Michelle says 7.31.20

    Thank you for sharing this. I went through the same thing but my worst month was June. It helped me personally to drink less alcohol and exercise a little more. I forced myself to do it even though I’m not an athletic person because I know that exercise can really boost your mood. Now I’m feeling better. I also have to admit that I’m in a state with a lot of cases but I’m getting on a plane to visit family next week. It’s a risk but one that I weighed and ultimately decided to take. I’m not staying in the same house as my family members and will wear a mask while visiting with them, probably mostly outside. As this pandemic doesn’t show signs of ending soon, we all have to make the best choices we can and stop judging one another for them (except the mask-less people, they suck).

  13. Sam says 7.31.20

    Super helpful. Thank you for sharing so honestly! You are definitely not alone in these feelings. It’s hard because if you and everyone you love is safe and healthy, you feel like you can’t/shouldn’t complain. But, the truth is that this situation still sucks for everyone in different ways. We are in the midst of a global pandemic with a million unknowns, and living in NYC right now is very weird. Glad you’re feeling the funk lift and hope things continue to feel better (but, if they don’t, that’s okay!)

    Virtual hugs,
    Sam

  14. amanda says 7.31.20

    I agree with everything! This month has been HARD. I was telling my husband I feel like the entire summer has been wasted. He encouraged me think of it as not wasted, just different. I honestly think laying under the bed with my cat sounds like the best thing in the world right now 🙂

  15. Steph says 7.31.20

    Thanks for such a honest post. You really summed up what many people are struggling with during quarantine-the highs, lows, uncertainties and compounded by guilt for feeling all if these things. Glad to see that things have been helping. Sending a virtual hug!

  16. Nicole says 7.31.20

    I know how you feel, this has been a really hard month for me too. I think when we were stuck inside and it was still pretty cold out, it was more manageable. Now that it’s the height of summer and so hot but there isn’t the normal reprieve of pools or finding ways to go to the beach, it’s more depressing to be stuck at home. I think it’s just wearing on everyone and there still seems to be no end in sight, which is so unbelievably frustrating when you see how so many other countries were able to get their numbers under control and mostly resume normal life.

    I also totally get the guilt that comes along with feeling down–I too have a job I can do from home and have a lot in my life, but I’m trying to remind myself that having those things doesn’t mean this isn’t really hard or that I’m not allowed to mourn what life used to be like (easier said than done!).

  17. Chelsea Wood says 7.31.20

    Thanks for sharing this, and being so transparent. You are completely not alone and there is something about July that I think has made people crack! My best friend, boyfriend, and parents have all been feeling this way. I feel like I have had no energy to do things that make me feel like me, and I basically just exist in my bedroom! Something I have really missed was having things to look forward to- so right now I’m trying to come up with theme nights to make it more exciting? I love the Masterclass idea, and we were discussing doing like a new region wine tasting exploration? Anywho- thanks for sharing and thinking of you! TG it’s August!!

  18. Kerry says 7.31.20

    Such huge hugs to you too ❤️ I’m not feeling too terrible at the moment, but I definitely agree with feeling worse now for some strange reason that things are going ‘back to normal’ – but I guess that’s exactly it, this isn’t what we know to be normal and that hurts. I’m missing my parents and back home a lot, I live out of the country in London and am used to going a few months without seeing family and home friends but the fact that I can’t travel to be with them right now is awful. Reaching my longest time away from home and it’s hard, but my husband and my cat (both of equal importance and support let’s be honest) continue to keep me feeling alright. We’ll get there, eventually, together xxx

  19. Holly says 7.31.20

    Love the transparency with this I think so many of us are feeling depressed without having an “end” to all of this while simultaneously guilty for being sad because we have our jobs and our health and it could be so much worse but I think it’s important to remember that our feelings are valid no matter what is going on. I’m glad you got some sunshine this week and I hope it continues!

  20. Joan says 7.31.20

    Thanks for sharing. I also live alone in NYC and am totally at end of my rope haha

  21. Rachelle Porsenna says 7.31.20

    I’m so happy you are feeling a little better this week. I’ve been so down this month and can’t seem to shake it. This post is not whiny at and you mirror my feelings so well. I know I’m so lucky as well, I live alone in a spacious apartment and my work has not been affected. But my friends are not close by, I don’t want be irresponsible and expose my family and I’m in a long distance relationship, oh did I mention I was in Florida, the land of stupid. Anyway let me stop feeling sorry for myself. hang in there 🙂

  22. Hannah Orenstein says 7.31.20

    I’m sorry to hear you’ve been having a hard time this month. Your blog and Instagram Stories have been bright spots for me during quarantine — I love seeing what you’re reading, what you’re wearing, your work with Amazon Drop, and more. Sending virtual hugs and I hope next month feels easier!

    • grace at the stripe says 7.31.20

      Aw thank you so much Hannah! I will say, your book really cheered me up. I spent a whole day reading it, I forgot how much I loved (watching) gymnastics and the olympics as a kid. It was actually one of the books I mailed out – I sent it to my mom who has also been taking this really hard. I think she will love it!

  23. Elizabeth E says 7.31.20

    I feel this deeply — I was doing okay the first few months, but then my work confirmed we’d be working from home through January 3, and it sent me spiraling. I know that I am in such a position of privilege that I have a job and that it can be done safely from home, but omg, January is so far away. I’m also single, and my dog died earlier in quarantine (she was elderly but I am missing my buddy something fierce), and I’ve basically just been a tear faucet for the last month. I’m trying to fake it until I make it — making myself go on walks in the morning, finding new ways to spruce up my apartment, and honestly, planning on an extended visit to my hometown this fall. I work in Gov Affairs, so post-election, my Mom is planning on driving up here and bringing me and my stuff down south. It feels weird, but when else am I going to get to spend multiple weeks with my parents, my siblings, and my nieces and nephews? I am trying to find that bright side, but it still is all sucky.

    That said, if anyone in DC is in this boat, and wants to do socially distant bagel picnics or cocktails, let me know.

    • MeLisa says 7.31.20

      Hi Elizabeth! I am also in DC and I completely feel you. This is my 4th month of telework with no end in sight. We have been told it could be through spring 2021…I’m single and have lived in DC for about 6 months. I moved here in December for a new job. I went to college here (but hadn’t lived here for almost 15 years) and have girlfriends from college who are still here but they are in relationships and have quarantined with their SO, so its been much harder to plan things. Where in DC are you? I’m in Van Ness. Would love to meet up for a social distance hangout. Are you a part of the Stripe FB group (or the local DC one)–you might be able to search my name in either of those and PM me if you are intersted. I’m so sorry to hear about your dog, that would be incredibly difficult. I’m glad you are making plans for the fall!

      • Rosemary says 7.31.20

        Hi Melisa/Elizabeth!

        I am also in DC and also single and quarantining alone and would love to meet up with some others who are in the same boat for a socially distant hang out! My insta handle is @rosemarykp if you want to DM me and we can coordinate something? I’m looking forward to it!

        • MeLisa says 7.31.20

          Hi Rosemary!

          Instagram is a great idea, I am @melisacr. I just messaged you.

          • Danielle says 7.31.20

            So sorry about your dog. Me four! Would love to connect!

            @daniellekantor on IG!

  24. Kelly says 7.31.20

    Hugs to you and hugs to those who are feeling the exact same! ❤️ This is all so hard – all of the unknown, all of the anger for “we could have prevented this!”, all of the stress, all of the “new normal”. I also feel like I cycle in and out of being “OK” and feeling so much anxiety/depression that I just sit on my couch and watch Friends all day while eating peanut M&Ms (full disclosure: I’m currently out of M&Ms and that feels like my most pressing concern at the moment…).

    Thanks so much for being so open and vulnerable with us. Without a doubt, I know your words are going to help at least one person know they’re not alone. You’ve built a great community and I love being a part of it!

    • Marie says 7.31.20

      Thank you for sharing! I am 37 and live alone and July was my roughest month as well. I felt depressed going into summer, especially since other people outside the city had more freedom, and then too many life things happened (my dog died, family and friend health emergencies, etc.) so I really felt like nothing would ever go right again. Totally could relate to your eeyore comment. But this week I told myself that it was going to be better and the fake it to you make it mentality did help. So thank you for writing this because I don’t feel so alone!

      And I guess I am at the point if “quarantine” that I comment on blogs since I’ve never done this before haha. But I love all your content.

  25. Sara says 7.31.20

    Please move to Charleston 🙂 All jokes aside, THANK YOU for being real. This quarantine has shaken people to the core and it is so nice for someone public to be real about how much this sucks. It’s a sad time for the entire world and you are allowed to grieve. We all are!

  26. Denise says 7.31.20

    This. is. me. I’m an introvert and live alone. Shelter in place? I’ve got this! What I didn’t realize is how I could pop by a favorite restaurant, sit in the bar and chat with my favorite waitress and bartender, and get some socialization. All of a sudden, I was really alone. And although I appreciated Zoom happy hours and getting out walking with my two dogs, it was hard. And why now has it gotten harder?! I guess because we hoped there was an expiration date. If we could flatten the curve, we’d be able to go back to quasi-normal. July has been a month of soul searching and hard work. Leaving the wine behind and really thinking through and feeling everything. It’s exhausting, but it has to be done. You didn’t come across as whiny at all. We are all going through this!

  27. Meghan says 7.31.20

    I deeply relate to this. July was SO HARD. I felt levels of exhaustion and stress and anxiety that I haven’t felt in a very long time. I felt similar feelings of deep loss and mourning (RIP dating life, too) and severe anxiety over things happening in my personal life. And yet work life was doing well! So it felt silly to be feeling so anxious and stressed. Every day is different. Meditating, early bed times, baths and wine have all helped. But I’m still not adjusted to this feeling of feeling emotionally and physically depleted. Thanks for sharing in this post xx

  28. Tadra says 7.31.20

    Thank you so much for sharing ❤️

  29. Mackenzie says 7.31.20

    Grace, I feel the same way! Thanks for being vulnerable and sharing. I feel so weird also that I feel worse month 5 than I did at the beginning of quarantine. My mom lives in Florida and this is also the longest I have gone without seeing her. I had it in my mind that August would be the end of this (no idea why August but it’s what I had in my head). I feel worse now because I have no idea when this will actually be over and see my mom? Will I be able to see her for thanksgiving or for Christmas, who knows and this causes me so much anxiety. Anyway, I appreciate you sharing your feelings and knowing I’m not alone!! Sending you lots of positive vibes!

  30. Erinn says 7.31.20

    Same. I live in Boston by myself. In April, I retreated to my parent’s house about 2 hours away. I thought it would be for a few weeks but I’m still hear 5 months later! Thankfully my job was not seriously impacted but we have no date set for when we are expected to return. It’s been much tougher to stay motivated and I feel myself sliding into the same negative mindset from almost 10 years ago that ultimately triggered my move to the city. I miss my life I had built but, at the same time, see no point in rushing back to sit by myself in a tiny apartment. The struggle is real…

  31. Melissa says 7.31.20

    I can totally relate to this. In my case – I became pregnant at the start of quarantine thanks to IVF after a long three-year struggle to get here. I am incredibly grateful it worked. Because of the pandemic, my OB has ordered my husband and I to remain isolated and only see close family who has also stayed in isolation. My parents and brother have continued to hunker down at home so that we can see them regularly. My husband can’t come in for any doctor visits or scans due to office policies for social distancing – so I’ve mourned the loss of having a “normal” first experience being pregnant but I’m also elated that my body cooperated and that we’ll have our daughter this Christmas. It’s a crazy mix of emotions – feeling isolated from friends who won’t even see us during this happy time for us, and video chatting is starting to feel tired. Anyway, I just felt compelled to share after reading your blog. I think we are all struggling with the loss of control over our lives and just living in this seemingly unending timeline of “covid” with no idea – if or when – things will be “normal” again. Sending love.

  32. Theodora says 7.31.20

    Yes to journaling! I never journaled either because I was blogging…but what I journal is VERY different than what I write publicly. Thank you for being so honest. I deal with clinical depression, and I’m glad people are talking about that more, too, but there’s also just normal feeling depressed like this for a while that is also totally normal and also a part of life sometimes—especially when there’s a goddamn pandemic going on!! (And so much misinformation AND depressing news.) And the cycle of feeling bad about feeling bad is so real…and while it’s happening, you *know* it doesn’t help, but it’s hard to stop. Glad you’re feeling a little better, and hugs.

  33. Cheyenne says 7.31.20

    Wow.. you literally took the words out of my mouth. I moved from Austin in January thinking that living here in NYC would be the best experience I would ever have and was so ready for my life to finally feel like it was starting. These past few months have been really rough, but Im trying to focus on the good and the things that have gone right and that Im really lucky to still have a job and friends and family that are in good health. I started counseling yesterday and it was such a relief to talk to someone about how I was feeling that could have an unbiased opinion. I knew I was struggling, but finally articulating those feelings was such a relief and I actually woke up this morning feeling a little brighter and more like myself. I usually go into the weekends and sink further into depression, but Im feeling extra motivated to get out there and start doing the things I enjoy. I know when I look back on these past 5 months (or however long this lasts) I hope that I can see how much I grew in this period and how much there is to come.

    • Ashley Allibhoy says 7.31.20

      Hi Cheyenne! I moved to NYC at the end of February from Chicago (was there for two years), but my husband and I are from Austin. I am the exact same boat, we took a big risk and picked up and came here for a job opportunity but also the magic of the city and two weeks after being here, COVID kicked off in full force. I didn’t have a chance to begin meeting people and have spent time (socially distant) with two other people besides by husband since mid March. I’m looking for a therapist as well to figure out some coping mechanisms and my feelings have ranged from this is totally manageable and there are things that I’m remember fondly from this time to I’m getting in a car and moving back to Austin tomorrow. I acknowledge my privilege and that it is still valid for this to be a completely shitty situation. I’m open to a social distant hang, in any fashion that feels low risk and safe. Zero pressure, but I’m willing to try anything to get some socialization besides Zoom. My IG is AshleyAllibhoy.

  34. Cassidi says 7.31.20

    Sending you a giant virtual hug back!

  35. Emily says 7.31.20

    OH, girl! I hear you on all you’ve said. I too live in a major US city and have for the very first time been asking myself if i want to leave. And that’s something I thought I would never say.

    I’ve also starting describing my emotions as “toddler size”– you know, raging one moment and weeping the next. All big emotions, all the time.

    Thanks for sharing. It actually helps to know that I’m not alone in things actually feeling harder five months in than they did in the beginning. Appreciate the honesty!

  36. Kayla says 7.31.20

    Thank you for this and for your honesty. I can really relate right now, the last few weeks have felt HARD again in NYC. It’s good to know I’m not the only one feeling 5328905 different feelings right now.

  37. Lily says 7.31.20

    Grace, thanks so much for sharing this honest and vulnerable post. Your blog has been such a bright spot for me during quarantine!! I’m feeling the exact same way as you – July has been SO hard. I had a super rough week last week – we were supposed to see my cousins and my parents for a weekend at our beach house, which I felt pretty safe about (everyone’s been social distancing and the house is driving distance from our home base in Boston), but then the out-of-state quarantine rules changed and we had to cancel and it DEVASTATED me way more than it should have! I literally spent an evening in bed crying which is so out of character for me.

    I think for me, a lot of it has been the fact that it doesn’t feel like there’s anything to look forward to anymore, and I really underestimated how much that helped me to get through shitty/down periods of life before this whole thing. With no light at the end of the tunnel in sight and things returning to a modicum of “normalcy” (but still a normal that I find kind of depressing), it just feels like all of the things I was excited about before this may never return. I know that that’s fatalist thinking and not true, but I think the fact that it’s summer and we’re coming up on the month full of most of my cancelled plans has really exacerbated the feeling! I just want something to look forward to again – a party, a holiday, a concert, a big trip to someplace new, even a dinner at a restaurant indoors with no masks! – and I have no idea when that will be possible. Of course, I say all this from my beach house now and with a week of vacation from work on the horizon, so I feel like an a**hole for even thinking this way and I know I have a lot to be grateful for. But it’s sometimes hard to see the things to be grateful for instead of the things we’ve lost.

    Overall, I just have to keep reminding myself how lucky my family and I are and thinking about what I can do that’s positive right now. I’ve pivoted from using my planner to plan trips and game nights and dinners with friends to planning how I’m going to use my solo time – I make time each week for working on my knitting or creative projects, plan the books I’m going to read, and write down a gratitude list every day and a list of good things that happened every week. I find that it helps me to keep my attitude more on the positive side! But some days are harder than others. I’m glad to hear that your funk is lifting somewhat; sending you positive thoughts for the rest of summer!!

  38. Janet says 7.31.20

    I’ve been listening to a podcast “My Plague Year”, and listening to the early episodes was like going back in time. I don’t know which is hardest – reliving all the extreme fear we had at the start (when we didn’t know if we would have enough toilet paper and were rationing food) or hearing how we all expected it to be over in a couple of months. I miss having things to look forward to – there’s no way to plan when the virus is in charge. I dread the upcoming school year – I’ll be teaching on-line but students will still be on campus and I’m afraid for them and my colleagues. On the other hand, I know it will be good to have more structure to my day when class starts. I hear about other people going on vacation or meeting up with friends and wonder if we’re just living in a parallel universe – I haven’t left my neighborhood in weeks. We’re probably being over-responsible but cases keep going up in my area. I have better days when I manage to stay off social media until after 5 – between envy of others’ vacation photos and the constant stream of bad news there is not likely to be anything on there that will make me feel better. Still, I know I’m lucky to have my husband and cats (we were apart the first three months of the pandemic) and a comfortable home. And that we are both still working but from home where we’re safe. I’ve been taking the Headspace “Appreciate” course. I also started journaling each morning. Routine is helpful.

  39. Shana says 7.31.20

    Maybe it’s a bit of survivors guilt? Or I had a discussion with my work coach today about grief and the amount people are feeling during this time for the loss of things they didn’t even realize they had or wanted. I love the micro-high post you did earlier because it completely resonated with me as I experience all 8000 emotions in one day at times, usually Sundays hahaha but you are doing great IMO! Your content is spot on, good for you for getting organized and ellevest is amazing so yeah for finances!

  40. MeLisa says 7.31.20

    Grace, I 100% feel this post. Theoretically this should have been a really good month for me. I actually saw some friends in person for an extended period of time and I found out I am getting a promotion at work despite only being there for 6 months (I totally feel the guilt writing this on the internet as I know how many others may be struggling). However, despite all of this, I have really struggled. I’ve moved states 2 times in 2 years, so I feel like I’ve had an extended period of time not being settled, and trying to make community, while also making a career change. I’m in my mid-30’s and single with my cat (who seems to be more annoyed with me being home). I’ve engaged with weekly zoom calls with long distance friends, I’ve re-connected with old friends virtually, but that seems to be more draining now. I’m an extrovert, and find myself longing for the in-person meetings and feeding off the energy of others. I guess a silver lining is I am opening up to more people about how I am feeling, and as you said, expanding the people I trust with my feelings. I’ve had to cancel trips to see family and friends, and wish I could just know the next time I’ll see them. This was a week my mom was supposed to be here; this is longest time I’ve gone without seeing her, and my sister is going for three weeks next month, which I think is sparking jealousy with me. I’m definitely the most cautious of my friends, it could be because I work in public health, and I get scared easily by watching the data. Thank you so much for sharing! I so appreciate your honesty and bravery in posting this, and grateful for the community of women you have supported, lifted, and engaged with through the facebook group, blog, and instagram.

  41. Sharon says 7.31.20

    Thank you for posting this. Reading your post and the comments, has made me feel a lot less alone. I am married with 2 teenage kids and the togetherness has been great and tough all at the same time. July was by far the hardest for me too. I was thinking that by now, we would have an end date to this thing. I feel like there is no light at the end of the tunnel. Yes, some things have gone back to a new “normal” but watching people have parties and go on like this is over ANGERS me… we are still in the middle of a pandemic and if we are not careful, we will be back to where we were in March. In March, there was a newness to this. I came up with hundreds of ideas to make the most of it. We are now 5 months in and I am beyond exhausted and depleted. We got news yesterday that our kids are going back to school full time ( I am in Canada and things are better) and I am in part ecstatic that my kids will go back to seeing friends and back to a routine and terrified of what happens when someone gets sick. I am OVER this!

  42. Casey says 7.31.20

    Amazing piece. You are not complaining at all! I relate to every single word, and am a fellow New Yorker, hang in there. Things will shift for you soon ❤️

  43. Shelby says 7.31.20

    Thank you so much for saying this about dating, Grace. I feel the exact same way, it feels so hopeless!

  44. Angie N says 7.31.20

    Oh my gosh I have been feeling exactly the same way! I think I’ve teared up more in July than March/April combined even though those were the ‘scary’ months. One of the toughest things for me has been to see the city & small biz suffer so much. As places are opening back up we’re also finding out which ones didn’t survive and that’s taking its toll. Glad to hear your’e starting to feel better
    Xx angie

  45. Anna says 7.31.20

    Thank you for sharing this. I appreciate the honesty! You’re absolutely right, it helps others to know they aren’t alone ( Speaking as a therapist). I’ve had similar feelings and think the reality of this being our new normal for who knows how long has almost required a second stage of grieving for me. Also in the same boat as you with having parents down south while living up in the NYC area. It’s so hard right now! Thanks again for sharing your story and your tips!

  46. Shelby says 7.31.20

    Brene brown had a great podcast episode about empathy for ourselves and for others, about how when we give compassion to ourselves that doesn’t mean we have less compassion for others. It was early in the pandemic season but it has stuck with me. Would highly recommend! Her podcast is called unlocking us.

  47. Jenifer Ekstein says 7.31.20

    Totally feel the same way. there’s something about it coming to the last month of summer that makes it feel like we’re never going to get past this. I think it’s also the uptick of cases. June seemed very promising because the media was reporting that cases were decreasing and then seemingly there was deluge of cases in states that hadn’t really closed down. Thank you for sharing! I think hearing someone feel a similar way to many provides comfort knowing we’re all not alone in feeling this.

  48. Callie says 7.31.20

    Thank you for sharing. As a physician, this month has actually been the hardest for me too. My kids will be doing virtual school, I have no clue how that’ll happen and I have to find a new nanny and everyone “loves” doctors and nurses but not enough to wear a mask or to trust us and not accuse us of being liars for money.
    This will end eventually. Until then, sending you love.

  49. Kelli says 7.31.20

    Thank you for sharing!!! As I mentioned to you in DM’s I have felt similar in July and just can’t figure it out. I’m taking your idea of creating, love this! I’m not a very creative person but also loved your gardening and so bought plants for my deck and just ordered a little herb garden because the plants brought me so much joy. Thank you again hearing other people feel similar really does help! ☺️

  50. Rebecca says 7.31.20

    Grace, much of what you wrote resinates with me. The past two weeks, in particular, have been quite challenging. I’m a teacher, and even during a typical summer, my anxiety starts to creep back up once I hit mid-July. However, during this summer, those feelings of dread have greatly intensified. While on the one hand I, like you, am very grateful to have stable employment, I am also still waiting to hear what form my job will take in the fall. It’s been challenging to not have any real control over that decision or even a real choice in what I personally will do once that decision is made: an unpaid leave of absence is not financially viable for me.

    I’m taking an English poetry course this summer, and I’m SO grateful for the structure it gives me. Having something concrete and external to occupy my mind provides a welcome break. Masterclass sounds like something I’ll need to check out next!

  51. Tracy says 7.31.20

    100% hear you and feel you on this. I had a recent conversation with my therapist and she said, you can feel sad and crappy but also be very lucky that you and your family are healthy. Those feelings can be felt at the same time, and there is nothing wrong with that. Coming from someone outside my main circle, I knew I needed to hear that. Its like the saying we are all in the same storm, just everyone is in a different boat (The storm being the pandemic & current affairs of the country).

    I swear by my journal and am looking to order more, from a local small business hopefully to support them during this time. The other thing I have been doing is taking photos of pretty things, which one makes me happy and two enhances my skills!

    Thank you for being so vulnerable in this post and sharing!

  52. Lara says 7.31.20

    Thanks for sharing this, I know EXACTLY how you feel. This is going to sound crazy, but an absolute gamechanger for me has been buying a car this month. I’ve lived in the city for 10+ years relying on public transportation, but haven’t felt safe taking that or Ubers during quarantine. It’s definitely a splurge (especially monthly parking – yikes) but it’s been SO worth it for my mental health. Being able to get out of the city for a day for a hike in the country, an out-of-the-way beach, or even picking up lunch from somewhere that’s not walkable, has made the isolation feel less all-consuming. I hope you’re able to find moments of peace in the same way xo

    • Zoe Kaiser says 7.31.20

      Lara I’m inspired by you! My husband and I have been discussing this, but just testing it out with zipcar pretty frequently. Gonna think on this.

  53. Kait says 7.31.20

    Thank you for sharing, Grace. I have had clinical depression my entire life and one of the biggest struggles for me has always been the guilt – I am beyond lucky/privileged/all the things and it’s hard to accept feelings of sadness plagued with guilt. Something that helps me (and recently my friends as they open up about feeling down) is reminding myself, and saying out loud, “your feelings are valid.” Because they are. And sometimes it’s really helpful to hear it.

    I also relate on the NYC sitch, as I’m dealing with the same thing in San Francisco. I’m 33 and single and honestly thinking my best move may be to move home with my parents (4 hours away!) – which feels so crazy to say (how on earth did that become my best option?!?!). Giving up the life I’ve known for 11 years (and rent control!!) is one of the hardest decisions I’ve had to make. But at the end of the day, I think it’s helpful to plan on this lasting a long time… if it doesn’t, I’ll be pleasantly surprised. But in the meantime, I’d like to live with the people I love most and can hug on a regular basis. It’s an important reminder to put ourselves first and do what we think is best for us…which is easier said than done.

    I hope writing this post and reading our comments helps you feel better too. Because it is always comforting to know we aren’t the only one feeling this way.

    • Laura C says 7.31.20

      ❤️❤️❤️

    • Lisa says 7.31.20

      Hi Kait, I totally can emphatize with you. I moved to San Francisco last winter for a program, and things were fine until COVID hit. Since then, I’ve been in my tiny studio, without a social support system in the city, feeling so glum, and wasting so much money on rent without reaping the “rewards” of living in San Francisco. I recently made the decision to move back to Sacramento (where I was at previously, and have a bigger social support system), and have been feeling so much better and more optimistic. Being back with people who loves you (at least temporarily) makes a world of difference. Sending you good thoughts as you decide on your next move!

  54. Leigh says 7.31.20

    I 100% understand feeling pathetic for laying under the bed with your pet!! My dog has been depressed recently (partly related to those INSANE fireworks in NY in June), so she spends a lot of time under the bed. So… I spend a lot of time with her under the bed. I feel like such a sad dork, but then I remember that my dog feels sad and doesn’t feel shame about it because she’s a dog! And I’m like, “Okay, I feel sad, oh well! We’ll make it through!”

    Thank you for sharing this!!

  55. Olivia says 7.31.20

    Thank you Grace for sharing! Your vulnerability is such a strength (sorry for the Brene Brown moment).Your blog has been such a bright spot for me for the past five months because of what you share. From the cozy clothes recs to your posts about mental health. I totally can relate to how you are feeling. Especially on the dating and friend front. You are not alone!
    xo

  56. Tracey says 7.31.20

    I feel the same way. I also have this feeling of dread and worry. I am afraid things will be shut down again. I am worried about how I am going to support my children in the new back to school model and also be a working mom in healthcare with little flexibility. My daughter is already struggling mentally with anxiety and is going into 7th grade. I am just sad and and anxious ! Ugh . Stupid corona !

  57. Ellen says 7.31.20

    Thank you so much for posting this, Grace. It takes a lot of courage to show both sides–most influencers don’t dare–and that’s why I continue to read year after year. I’m in the same place… Even on a “good” day something minor might get me down. I used to walk constantly and have always loved it. Now, I’m visibly pregnant, and on my masked walks have to regularly scoot into the street because so few people are willing to wear masks, keep 6′ distance, or even cough into their elbows. It’s hard to see that behavior and not think we’re effed. But at least we can read your posts along the way!

  58. Zoe Kaiser says 7.31.20

    Thanks for making this post to share and invite others to do so. I also have been feeling so anxious. My seasonal allergies have been like no other and I was so worried I was getting sick. After two weeks of isolation and no fever, just a throat tickle and sneezes, I’m resigning myself to continued isolation and trying to dig myself out of the anxious dark hole I’ve been in. I also just moved to Chicago and don have many close friends here so that’s been tough. My poor husband has been bearing the brunt of my foul moods.
    I liked what you said about acknowledging your feelings and then faking it a bit- there’s something about telling yourself it’s time to feel better that helps for sure.

  59. Laura C says 7.31.20

    Sending you big hugs Grace! I feel 1000% the same way. I work in the food/hospitality industry and I have been furloughed from my job since March. I still have not been called back to work and it is killing me slowly. I miss my work family and I miss having a purpose each day. The only thing that really brings me joy is exercising a lot—online barre classes daily and long walks each day. I am 36 and single and had made a New Year’s goal to really put myself out in the dating world. And then Covid hit and life just came to a halt. I don’t have many options for safe places to meet someone out for socially distanced dates, nor do I really feel comfortable meeting new people right now. Also, I’m not sure interested in video dating. So basically another year has passed for the chance to meet someone. Hard to stay positive when you don’t stop aging and living but everything around you is on hold.
    So I started giving myself smaller weekly tasks to stay focused and busy. I made myself start creating a personal website as a portfolio of my work, which will help in the long run for career stuff. I’ve also started selling my baked goods through Instagram to friends and family in town. And like you mentioned, learning something new always gets you out of your head—so I signed up to start learning a new language!
    I’m thankful for influencers like you who are keeping things real. It’s hard for everyone, whether you are working or not, have kids or don’t. But I’m grateful for your podcast and a handful of others because when I listen, I don’t feel as alone anymore!

  60. ellen says 7.31.20

    Thank you so much for sharing and being honest. It helps to feel a little less alone. I understand that impulse to be “things suck, but they suck harder for other people, so they shouldn’t suck for me.” And, that is just not how it works. Some one (Brene Brown maybe) said there are no suckage Olympics. Definitely good to have perspective but also okay to embrace the suck. I am in the same boat with seeing my parents and sending you very kind feelings.

    It take a lot of courage to be vulnerable and transparent (especially on the dumpster fire that is the internet). Thank you.

  61. Maya Viswanath says 7.31.20

    Granted this might not help with your pile of sadness, but I wanted to let you know regardless – maybe something might feel you a tiny bit better?
    1. You are not alone. You reach SO MANY PEOPLE, and touch so many lives in a gloriously positive manner. I come along with you throughout the day through whatever (seriously, anything and everything) you share.
    2. I live vicariously in one of my fave cities through you.
    3. I came to the US in 2003 from Mumbai – to go to school and stayed. I am my parents’ only child. I see them every 2 years. There are times when I wail “I miss my mom and dad!”, and my dogs come to comfort me. I completely understand your longing to be close to your parents. I feel the same way too.
    4. I have mediocre productivity since my biotech company mandated quarantine/lockdown in March. I don’t think when I will be going back onsite (I live in MA). Some days are great, some days good, and then there are some days when I get NOTHING done. I am ok with mediocrity right now.
    5. You encourage me to try/do/buy pretty things to get through the days. I am currently eyeing those clementine pjs you were wearing recently in your stories.
    Grace – you embody that attribute, and your name. I truly adore you.
    x

  62. Cathy says 7.31.20

    You know why I read your blog every day, Grace? You’ve always been very relatable but during this whole coronavirus thing you have been honest about sharing what your real experiences have been. Some bloggers were pretty much trying to ignore the situation and posting outfit pictures when we couldn’t go anywhere, never posting pictures of themselves in masks and not addressing the BLM movement. I appreciate your honesty and you make me not feel so alone.

  63. Ilona says 7.31.20

    Meeeee tooooo!! I feel so BLAH. The worst part is that it doesn’t seem like anxiety or depression, but I just don’t care about anything! It’s so hard not to have anything to look forward to, nothing to celebrate, nothing to challenge me, etc. Then I feel guilty for feeling so blah because I’m also lucky with health, finances, significant other, and family. What a year!!!!!

  64. Melissa Whaley says 7.31.20

    Thank you for sharing all this. You mirrored so much of how I’m feeling & it’s a constant contradiction & it’s just crappy. I’m tired of starting sentences with, I know I’m lucky but… I know I’m fortunate but… truthfully things just suck this year & I need to have days where I start sentences with that, too!

  65. Bekah says 7.31.20

    I concur with everything here. Thank you for sharing!

  66. Emma says 7.31.20

    This month has felt a lot more like how I felt in April, even thought we can do so much in Chicago, too! Illinois has been so careful and seeing our numbers rise every day this week with news headlines reading “Things May Start Rolling Back Soon” just puts me right back to my headspace of April when I felt like we had any control over anything. Realizing that the US is the only country who has handled the pandemic this badly has made me ashamed, sad and so worried lately and I think that has subconsciously creeped into my day to day. I really thank you for sharing this post. You have grown such a thoughtful, supportive and positive community and I know none of us like seeing each other (our invisible friends!) down during this, so thank you for bringing hope to this space. You are such a bright light on the internet, Grace, and I know exactly how you feel about never wanting to be in a bad mood. I hope you have a great weekend and thank you for reminding us this will pass.

    P.S. I listened to this week’s GGE and Rayna absolutely killed me with her romper story and saying “Well, I was with Grace Atwood so what do you expect?” made me LOL if you haven’t listened already 🙂

  67. EE says 7.31.20

    Grace, I never comment but you really articulated exactly what I’ve been feeling. This month has been tough. I’m in Florida where cases are raging and it’s too hot to do the things that sustained me earlier (running, gardening, hiking). I, too, have struggled between feeling so grateful for a job and health and guilty for feeling down. So, I’m trying to focus on the small joys and not beat myself up over the rest. Anyway, thank you for sharing.

  68. Kacie says 7.31.20

    Grace, I was reading this post and it was almost like I had written it myself. ESPECIALLY the part about NYC. I love it here, but the pandemic has undoubtedly changed it, probably for good, and now I’m finding myself reevaluating my own plans for how long I’ll stay. I’m not sure if I want NYC without the *magic*…I know you know what I mean. Thank you for this post and this honesty and this vulnerability. We’re all in this together.

    Xo, Kacie | theprettylittlehustler.com

    • Michelle says 8.2.20

      NYC doesn’t need anyone who only cares to take its magic during the good times and flees during the bad. It’s like a significant other, a living breathing thing that needs residents who recognize that, not fair weathered folks. Bye

  69. Meghan says 7.31.20

    I just want to say thanks for sharing your real self. I hope nobody would ever consider you whiny for being a person with emotions! I had a friend tell me once, “Just because your life could be worse doesn’t mean you have to feel guilty that it isn’t. You are entitled to your feelings.” I try to remind myself of that when I’m struggling knowing all the privilege I have, but still feel sad/frustrated/angry/pouty, etc. which, like you, has been a lot lately.

    One thing I learned from Carmeon Hamilton (@carmeon.hamilton) and Shavonda Gardner (@sgarnderstyle) on Instagram is that readers/followers tend to feel so entitled to your life because you are generous with sharing it with us. We’ve seen the inside of your house! I can’t say that for people I consider actual friends! It can be easy to forget that influencers are actual full humans with feelings.

    In any case, I learn so much from you and the community you build here. Thank you for pouring yourself into this work. It brings joy to so many, myself included.

  70. Lisa Simpson says 7.31.20

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Grace. All of us have been on some sort of emotinal roller coaster these past few months. Glad to hear you’re doing better !

  71. Katherine says 7.31.20

    Thanks for sharing this and being so open and honest! You are one of the few bloggers I follow and I do it because you are so genuine and real about life, not just posting a highlight reel.

    Your feelings really resonated with me and so many others who commented below! This pandemic sucks, especially when there is no end date in site.

    I’m so grateful for this great brand and community you’ve built! Thanks for opening up and letting us in!

  72. Rebecca Zoler says 7.31.20

    Thank you so much for sharing this! I feel like you perfectly articulated how I’ve been feeling recently (and I suspect how most of us are feeling) – I constantly remind myself to be grateful for my and my friends’ and families’ good health, grateful to still have my job and be able to WFH, grateful for my cats for keeping me company, and overall grateful for my safety and well being during this time. But, all that doesn’t mean that I don’t have bad days and get really down and upset about all that I have personally had to sacrifice this year – from plans being cancelled to just not being able to see friends and family as regularly. And as someone who also loves living in the greatest city in the world (Queens, NY), feeling upset about not being able to travel around and explore the city like I used to. It really is pure magic and I have missed that feeling so much.
    What I’m trying to say is thank you, this post really resonated with me and I appreciate you being so open with us <3

  73. Cassie says 7.31.20

    Thank you for your vulnerability. This was so helpful and soothing to hear – I’ve been feeling similarly in a lot of ways and knowing I’m not alone helps so much. Thank you, Grace

  74. Stacy says 7.31.20

    I totally feel you! I was ready to dive head first into a big big life change (relocating to a new state), and this pandemic put the breaks on it. But as it drags out longer than we anticipated, I have been struggling with whether i should just move forward with my plans, if that’s irresponsible, etc. I know the word “unprecedented” has been thrown around TOO MUCH but this situation truly is, so its no wonder we’re all spinning trying to navigate it. Right now I’m putting extra effort into the things that I know bring me joy and benefit my overall wellbeing.

    For what its worth, I think its so helpful to see bloggers open up like this, and I’m sure the rest of your readers appreciate this as much as I do.

  75. Karen Stamoulis says 7.31.20

    I feel the same way! For some reason these past two weeks have been really hard. It’s harder to get myself out of a funk. Plus with the summer coming to an end, it’s hard not to feel anxious about what the fall/winter will bring. Thanks for the honesty and good advice! Sending you a virtual hug!

  76. Brenda says 7.31.20

    I also know I’m lucky (my job is stable and I can work from home, and I live in a spacious house with my husband) but am still hitting a wall emotionally. I miss hugging people (especially my parents), seeing friends, going to fun places, and having more going on in my life than work and home improvement projects. The struggle is real. Thank you for sharing!

  77. Lauren says 7.31.20

    My advice? Get a friend with benefits if you don’t already have one 🙂 I keep one on retainer that I use when I’m not in a relationship. I’m currently single so it’s worked out very well for me during quarantine/this madness. LOL

    Thanks for being open about your recent struggles. It’s hard time for everyone so we need to be compassionate toward ourselves and others.

  78. Lily Fong says 7.31.20

    I just want to thank you for this post. I have been feeling the same – both grateful and sad for various reasons. Your tips are great and just know that you’re not alone and your post is helping all of us deal with these emotions. So glad i came across your blog and instagram…you are incredible!

  79. Carrie says 7.31.20

    Great post, thanks for sharing.

  80. Jen says 7.31.20

    Feeling exactly the same! This last week was (from a mental standpoint) my worst week since early March. I still have my job & I’m healthy, which I’m incredibly grateful for… but I still feel like shit. And feeling like shit makes me feel guilty. And then I feel guilty for even feeling shitty in the first place. At this point, I just feel stuck. So much is unknown right now, but I really appreciate your honesty, Grace. Opening up is really the key to letting some of the sadness escape us. *hugs* to everyone who is really going through it right now. This too shall pass.

  81. Annie says 7.31.20

    I have definitely started to feel this way! I’m in KY where things are better than NYC still (as far as openings) but I think I’ve realized where we are right now is where we’ll be stuck probably until….. maybe next summer?! I think I felt better before because like you said I thought by the end of June it would be over!!

    Also, I’m a teacher and we are going back to school in person. The schedule is A/B days so classes will be smaller, but I am still exposed to the same amount of kids. Also, it makes me very depressed thinking about how I can’t even see my students from last year because kids are basically on lock down in the building – they can’t go anywhere they don’t HAVE to be. It sucks because I understand the rule but it’s torture to not hug all the kids I spent a year with last year and didn’t even get to say goodbye to!!!

    Your thoughts about getting back into bed are me 100%. Honestly, sometimes I just allow myself to sulk. I know when school starts back up I will for sure have to give myself permission to some days come straight home, change into comfy clothes (throw my work clothes in the washer) and lay in bed. Sorry I just rambled to you and talked about myself. But your feelings are just so valid and heard! I hope you know you’re not alone. Also, I love Bad On Paper!

  82. Meghan says 7.31.20

    I feel this 100%; July has been my hardest month since COVID by far. I think that part of the stigma surrounding mental health is that people think depression only happens when there’s something sad or your overall life is terrible, which just isn’t true. There’s a really big difference between whining and sharing your struggles and I think the more open we are about mental health problems, the easier it will be to see the difference and reduce the stigma. Glad you’re finding some sunshine in the clouds!

  83. Maureen says 7.31.20

    I feel you on this so hard. July started on a high with cases dropping so much in our area that we went on a little trip. It was great until I fell off a bike and broke my finger. Trying to type for a living one handed for 3 weeks (or do anything else really), plus the now spike in cases in my area was a huge bummer. I am also really feeling like a failure for not getting pregnant yet despite being at home with my husband since March. I was really hoping 2020 would finally be our year to have a baby after 2 miscarriages. All of this is to say that…I feel you. Even though I have so much privilege, there are still many heavy things to deal with in life. No one knows what happens next and there is no blueprint. It’s all too much sometimes. I’m trying to be really kind to myself, using the Sanvello app (highly, highly recommend it) and take lots and lots of walks.

    Thank you so much for creating this community and giving us all a space to speak what’s in our hearts, and sharing with us too. We are all going to get through this.

  84. Mary says 7.31.20

    Thank you for sharing. I am so worried about my loved ones who aren’t being as protective as they should be. I worry about getting sick at work. I worry about getting my husband sick because of my work. I worry I will never see my grandmother in person again. All of it keeps me up at night. Reading helps. Being in nature helps. Donating to the food bank helps. But it’s still hard. Praying we get through this in one piece. Stay safe. Stay sane.

  85. Ali says 7.31.20

    Saaaaame! Thank you for your honesty!! It’s why you have such loyal readers / followers.

  86. Bridget says 7.31.20

    You’re not whiny, and I completely relate. This has been the toughest month so far. I try to keep things in perspective as well – I have a job, roof over my head, I’m healthy, etc., but some days I think we all have to feel sorry for ourselves. After a zoom call today, my new boss actually picked up on my bad mood and called me to check in to make sure I was ok. I choked up throughout the conversation just telling him how I was struggling. I feel embarrassed about that, but also proud that I was able to fess up to my struggle. I think the hardest part is feeling like there is no light at the end of the tunnel. Sometimes it feels pointless to me to see friends because the visits are so spaced out and just not the same. I really appreciate your honesty, and your blog has been a bright light for me these past 5 months.

  87. Anna J says 7.31.20

    Right there with you girlfriend. I really identified with the part about lying under the bed with the cat I have done some really weird shit in quarantine, especially when I’m feeling down. Good for you for putting this out there, made me feel very seen by someone I’ve never met. Hang in there!

  88. Amy says 7.31.20

    In my eyes you are so very successful – you are smart, bright, have real good women friendships, and have a successful blog/social media business with lots of really great brands. I hope you regain your sense of happiness soon. One day at a time.

  89. Karen says 8.1.20

    Wow, this is exactly how I’ve been feeling. The multiple personalities, the guilt for feeling bad when I should be grateful, the lack of self esteem and trying to see the best in small things. I wrote a post about being under a cloud and ways to lift out of it. My son (15) said why are you writing that, what are you saying? So I lost confidence & didn’t post it. Wish I had now but glad you did!
    Thank you so much for sharing.

  90. Natasha says 8.1.20

    This. Loved reading this post, really insightful and a reminder to truly take care of yourself. Love the micro-high concept.

    https://natashantone.com/

  91. Jenny says 8.1.20

    Thank you for keeping it real. As many have said, we are all feeling similarly, or have at different points in the past 5 months. I’ve been trying to focus on the little things, and your blog and some of the BOP book selections have helped, among other things.

    I’m a seamstress, and I started making masks in April for friends/family, but didn’t want get on the selling bandwagon because I am a) doing it for “therapy” and b) unlike so many other people, my family’s income is very safe and stable. Now I’m giving out all the extras to local organizations that help those in need.

    And I got a Covid pet ❤. Although, to be fair, we had already been talking to our fav rescue about adopting a second dog.

    Thanks again for all the great content!

    P.S. Tell Becca I’m saving Rom Com Pods for Autumn, when I predict I will need something special to enjoy.

  92. Katie Coleman says 8.1.20

    Feeling the same and sending you a giant hug back! Your weekend reads, Monday reads and podcast have helped me so much during this time!

  93. Mary says 8.1.20

    Thank you for the post! It is relatable and also I appreciate you not advocating toxic positivity. It is OK to have different emotions and not be 100%.

    Being single and living alone in quarantine is hard. A silver lining for me is since we are hunkered down the first thing people ask me is NOT so are you dating?! Finally, asking an older women something other than about her dating life. We are not defined successful by our relationship status.

    I love your insta feed, podcast and blog content during quarantine. As another commented, a bright spot!

  94. Shelley says 8.1.20

    Thank you so much for sharing this and being honest. I live in a state that’s almost totally open, but our cases are surging. I have two children under three and I’m considered an essential worker even when we were under a stay at home order. I feel like I’m a constant roller coaster of emotions, and people have tried to make me feel like I’m crazy because we really do stay home other than work and doctors’s appointments. It’s nice to know that other people are feeling all of these things and I’m not crazy, although I’m sorry that you’re struggling. Hang in there!

  95. Christy says 8.1.20

    It hit me hard this week too. I haven’t taken a vacation this year. Every plan was canceled. I took sick leave when I threw out my back but I was still working from the couch. I have so much work to do and I feel like I can’t keep up because my mind is begging for a break. From this year, this virus, from everything. I hope we both feel better soon. Hang in there!

  96. Rebecca says 8.1.20

    I’m late to the game here, Grace. When I read the focus of your post I wasn’t even brave enough to read it! It is a scary time. Bottom line. I just spent a week with my family in the mountains. I’m grateful. It’s terrible when you can’t see your family. Try to find a spark of joy each day. That’s what I’m doing. Little by little, Grace. Find joy in the little things. Your content lifts me. Thank You.

  97. Evelyn says 8.1.20

    Loved this! I’ve been feeling blue about not being able to see my girls (one is a New Yorker) and the constant threat to my husbands health (he is on chemo) But I realized just like anything in life this too is temporary. So glad I found you!

  98. Ellie says 8.1.20

    Not whiney or ungrateful in the slightest. You are absolutely not alone and I’m glad you wrote this post. I’ve been having a tough time too and agree that the last few weeks have felt like they’re on the down swing somehow. I kind of think that the news and politics and the knowledge that COVID is dragging out longer due to bad leadership, selfish fellow Americans, etc is salt in the wound.

    I haven’t been working since 3/20 (other than some great effort to work on a business idea in March-early June but I’ve trailed off a bit), I’m VERY extroverted and it’s hard not seeing friends and doing normal social things, and my husband and I are moving from Boston to Memphis at the end of the month which comes with it a whole mess of stress, anxiety and meh feelings. It’s just hard…and I don’t even have a more interesting way to end this comment. Hang in there <3

  99. Beth says 8.1.20

    Grace, I feel this so hard. I’m living overseas in Singapore (just hit the 5-year mark) and have been feeling so unsettled and more urgency around big life decisions—am I ready to move back to the US? Is it time to live closer to my family? So many questions and intense emotions… and lots of feeling overwhelmed and sad and crying during the past month or so. Even though things are actually much better here right now virus-wise! Thank you for sharing so openly. It’s helpful to know that others are also struggling and to be reminded that this is normal and this will pass. Sending you love. x

  100. Sharon says 8.2.20

    A bit late to the game, but I really enjoyed this post. It’s so nice to hear about someone else feeling the same gloom…. For me, faking it totally helps. But I also really should start journaling. I think processing it through writing would help me. I spend SO much time in my head these days….

    It was easier for me in the beginning because it was this tough thing we were all “getting through.” Now it’s this much longer unknown. It’s not terrible, but it’s not great. And we have no clue what to expect…. I used to travel for work, so I really miss the travel part. I miss the face to face interactions. The relationship building. The people watching.

  101. Julia says 8.2.20

    THIS. every word… so good!

  102. Lauren says 8.2.20

    100%!!!!!!! I love your content and have read it for years but this is the first time I’ve actually been compelled to leave a comment because it’s so. spot. on. I live in San Francisco and am dealing with all the same things: every day it seems like another friend is giving notice on their apartment and embracing nomad/airbnb life, moving back in with parents “until things change,” or buying a home in the suburbs with a significant other. As someone who really loves feeling grounded in a sense of community, perma-nomad life doesn’t sound great to me. And while I love my parents and their house, I fear moving in with them (even if I know it’s temporary) will feel like even more of a loss of the life I had, since that will completely take dating off the table (even though it’s not great currently!) and I won’t have a space to decorate or “nest” in as my own (which is another thing that brings me joy, beyond a sense of community). And, being single, I don’t feel drawn to the idea of getting a place out in the ‘burbs. The space would be nice, but will it be even harder to meet someone out there? It’s hard not to feel like life is just disintegrating before our eyes. One thing I keep telling myself is that I’m going to have FOMO no matter what I decide — there IS NO option that’s going to feel great. That at least takes off some of the pressure of trying to figure out “the right thing to do.” They’re all going to be tough. Anyways, I feel you, and reading about your experience is very helpful and makes me feel less alone in the “what do I do now?” confusion & sadness. Thanks for sharing!

    • Alexandra says 8.2.20

      I so feel you on not wanting to move home. I’ve wrestled with why because it would save so much money, but you’ve totally articulated it– it would be a huge loss of life as we’ve known it!

    • Sarah says 8.3.20

      Lauren I could have written this – also single in SF and it’s been really hard to watch so many people pick up and leave, I’ve had 4 close friends move permanently and 2 that have left for the forseeable future. I’m still happy here and not ready to move, but the city is so different and definitely feel like dating might never happen now. We should get a SF group together for a socially distanced hang!

  103. Alexandra says 8.2.20

    Feeling for you and I totally get it (as do so many of your readers : )). I’ve felt myself moving towards guilt a lot during quarantine– why do I feel bad when other people have it worse? How dare I feel good (on the days I do) when other people have it so bad? Etc. etc. ! I did a self-compassion course and realized how much my guilt was bringing me down, and it doesn’t help anyone! I think it’s great and so important to be grateful for what we do have, but you’re still allowed to feel like shit! I know you know that, but just a reminder– my therapist always tells me to talk to myself like I would a friend, and I would never tell a friend that they should feel bad that they feel bad because someone has it worse than them. In Buddhism that’s called the second arrow!

    Also, only you know what’s right for you and your family, but I flew in to Atlanta to see my family a couple of days ago from LA. I live alone and felt like seeing them would make me feel so much better– and it has. It was obviously a risk, but I wore a face shield and mask and splurged for first class so I’d have my own row. Basically, the risk felt worth it for me/ my family.

    Last thing! I travel a lot, like you do, and missing out on that along with just REAL LIFE has been really hard, especially not knowing when this is going to end. One thing I’ve started doing recently which has been super helpful is finding things I want to focus on for the next few months where it’s actually a benefit to be stuck at home. I am practicing my Spanish, and I want to learn French so that maybe next summer I can spend some time in France! Also, I’m writing more (maybe you could start a novel now? possibly a dumb suggestion while you’re feeling down, but I know a lot of people who would read it..), might freeze my eggs, etc. OK thank you for coming to my Ted talk ; ), and more importantly thanks for being honest and for all the great content you put out. Sending love! x

  104. Shari says 8.2.20

    My goodness how I relate to this blog post and so many of the comments. Like many others, I’m single, live alone, and have been struggling on and off … and right now is a massive struggle. So many things are coming up for me right now and my emotions change minute to minute sometimes. Deep sadness, anger, frustration, loss. The roller coaster is quite the ride these days! Im trying to find joy in the little things though and not putting too much pressure on myself. For those in the NY area, I’d love to do a socially distanced lunch or dinner or anything really. I have a car and can travel. 🙂 Maybe one of the good things to come out of this is making some new friends and establishing community.

  105. Karina says 8.2.20

    Thank you so much for sharing! Like you and it seems everyone else here, July was also not the best for me. I had been struggling with depression before COVID but was getting better. And I was actually doing better during the first few months but this last month has definitely been a big setback for me. I just lost all motivation to do anything I need to at home, I’m becoming more easily irritated by things my family does around the house when usually I can suck it up, I’m eating unhealthy. I even hit a mental block with reading which has been my saviour since March. When I try to do nothing, I feel guilty because I feel I should be doing more, or should have accomplished more to this point. The weird thing is I have been seeing friends more, I’ve eaten on the patio a few times, seen a good friend of mine regularly, and celebrated some birthdays now that more people are allowed to gather. It’s what I’ve wanted since COVID began and now that it’s here I’m unsure how I feel, or how I should feel. Just overall such a weird month mentally for me.
    I hope it helps knowing you’re not alone, because reading your post and all the comments has made me feel more understood just because so many people have been going through the same thing.

  106. Jessica says 8.2.20

    Part of what’s made it so rough is that we all thought we just had to flatten the curve and then we could go back to our regularly scheduled lives. Now we know we won’t see anything close to normal the rest of the year.

    It’s hard, but I find the best is to just take it day by day. In the meantime it definitely has me thinking long term…what city to live in, what kind of place to live in Trying not to make big decisions based on emotions. It’s comforting to know that there are others that feel the same way.

    Thanks for being so vulnerable.

  107. Kelsey says 8.2.20

    As someone who left nyc in December after nearly ten years, I can’t emphasize how good it felt to leave. For a while I refused to admit that nyc wouldn’t work for me long term and then my partner and I started talking about it seriously and eventually we left and it feels so good. Were in Philly which is still a big city but with so much more space and freedom. The inkling you feel will turn to an itch and then it will be overwhelming and you’ll wonder why you were ever afraid of leaving at all.
    Also a funny (and true!!!!) quote I heard about quar on the podcast las Culturistas was “every eight days i have the worst day of my life” and it’s so true. Sometimes I’ll make it two weeks without a meltdown but inevitably I have one. You’re not alone and your feelings are valid ❤️❤️

  108. Tereza Lima says 8.3.20

    Thank you, Grace, for normalizing sadness! That’s a very genuine feeling like any other. As someone diagnosed with depression, you got me at “I think the lesson here is that you can appreciate how lucky you are, but still feel like crap.”. That’s exactly what I was thinking the other day: feeling sad doesn’t make me unaware of how many privileges I have and I’m still very thankful for having them!
    Fortunately, there are the brighter days for all of us love, Tereza

  109. Anne says 8.3.20

    Thank you for sharing this – I needed to read this (a few times over a few days) to recognize the same feelings in myself. I think feeling less alone (knowing others are feeling this too) is helping me move forward. Sending lots of love.

  110. Kristina says 8.7.20

    Thanks for sharing… because ditto. And we all need to talk about it!

  111. Amy C Gilbride says 8.12.20

    Thank you for these tips! I thought things could not get any worse this year and then my dog died so I am in desperate need of some mood boosters.

  112. Katie Wheeler says 8.13.20

    Have you thought about just driving down to Charleston? You could probably do it in one day and not even have to stay in a hotel. I’ve gotten to see my parents a few times and it’s definitely good for the soul!