Feeling Like I’ve Just Exhaled

I haven’t been writing or drawing or playing guitar much this summer. I haven’t been watching tv or napping or cooking or really doing much of anything, it feels like. I’ve been working and running and playing in a band, been riding bikes and watching sunsets and eating delicious food and luxuriating in being young and active. But mostly, I’ve been content.

Content feels like a strange word. I keep thinking it’s a cop-out. Why just be “content,” when you could be “happy,” “excited” or “energized.” There are much more interesting adjectives out there. Content is something you want when you’re old. It feels like it shouldn’t be something I admit to being when I’m young. I hear the word “content” and I hear slowing down, settling into something, mellowing with age, giving up and becoming boring.

Saying I’m content has those implications. But actually being content is a whole different, beautiful ball game. I don’t ecstatically skip through my days, manically high on life and a touch, too distracted to work, sick with frantic planning. At the same time, I don’t crash so hard on the low points. I still cry, and cry I do, but in the things I feel upset about I am able to reassure myself: “You will not always feel this bad.” I am able to articulate my anger. I can vocalize jealousy, insecurity and worries and their power is gone.

Don’t get me wrong, the world is still a sad and cruel place. I haven’t lost my desire to keep fighting or give up. I’m content, not complacent.

But I feel like you feel when you have just exhaled, except I’m feeling that way most of the time. And it feels fucking great.

Like every other feeling, I know this feeling will pass. But for now, I’ll sit for a second, content in my, well, contentment.



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