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One Day in December

One day in December I felt like

even the ground beneath me couldn't hold me

Untethered, unmoored

Nothing I did felt worthwhile

One day in December

I tried to find meaning in my day

I met with a friend

I wrote, I got coffee, I tried to smile

One day in December

I reminded myself I'm a mom

That my husband loves me

But nothing soothed my aching heart

One day in December

I sought refuge in the bottle

I knew better,

But I was desperate to ease the ache

One day in December

I felt sunken to a new low

Sinking my own ship,

holding my own head under water

The ache eased

Replaced with shame

A day I won't soon forget

A day I hope I won't repeat

That day in December

I wasn't me

I was the worst of me

Luckily, I only hurt me.


I wrote this in December 2021 after a particularly difficult mental health day. It's a piece of writing that still makes my heart hurt because I can still feel the pain that I felt that day. My depression still flares up, but it hasn't overtaken me like it did that day in December.

I think a lot about alcoholism and its hold on so many people. I don't think I'm an alcoholic, but drinking is so much a part of our cultural fabric, that it's easy to slip into its grip. It's ever-present everywhere we go, it's in the music we listen to, it's even offered at kid-friendly events (like the Glo-Wild event at the Kansas City Zoo that our family attended this holiday season). The suggestion is everywhere, the temptation very real. We can hardly blame ourselves for succumbing to the siren's song of suds when we're having a bad day.

It feels risky for me to share this poem because it exposes me a bit. But what's the point of writing if you're not honest?


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