I'm riding the Wave of Sad
Sad Girl Winter is REAL.
I’ve been sad.
I am grieving my old life. Training people in the morning and writing in the afternoon. I lost my gym space to capitalism and it’s hard to move on. The version of myself that existed a few weeks ago is gone. As I walk by, I see a ‘For Lease’ sign in the window. The same one I saw when I first found it, a little over a year ago.
I found an overpriced shit hole and I was paying WAY too much for it. But it was mine. It lived around the corner from Stonewall Inn. Between Christopher Park, the site where pride began, and the 6th Precinct Police Station, the one which instigated the riots in 1969.
I felt good knowing that even though this entire neighborhood is overrun with oblivious millionaires and well-to-do yuppies, I was here. I walked out of my gym and saw the same people who thought I was the nanny when I watched my kid at the park. I got to look at them and say, “This is my gym. I’m a business owner in this neighborhood.” I’m on the same level as you.
Now it’s gone. I see the same people and all I can say is: yes, I’m technically unemployed and no, I won’t clean your house or walk your dog.
I talk to my old clients from the gym and they all give me ideas of what to do next and they all miss the mark. Fitness pays well in NYC but there is a fine line between offering services and being a servant. I find it very hard to find a balance between the two. I look to my BFF, Renee, for guidance. The Queen Mother of Hells Kitchen. She always reminds me that what we do is a public service. Our work is different but has its similarities since we bring physical benefit to other people’s existence. We are helping these people live their lives with ease. It’s important work.
I Want to Stay on Track
So, I’m bringing you into the mix. By reading this, you are helping me stay on track with my goals. You’re going to help me stay focused. Or more accurately stay on track when I fall into some temporary depressive state. In exchange, I’m going to share my process with you. It’s worked several times for me. When I transitioned, when I opened a coffee shop, had a baby, and most recently when I opened my tiny gym. And here it is:
I have to decide what I want to experience next and how I want to affect the people around me. Ideally, it would be nice to be able to spend time with my family and work on my travel show. I would also love to have another space. A bigger one where I can do group classes. I really want to arm the queers. . .with fitness! Here is the thesis statement version of that.
I will have access to a large space, similar to a church but intended for the healing of marginalized people, and work with the flexibility to spend time with my family while allowing myself the ability to travel abroad for my documentary series.
I need to set reminders everywhere. For me, every day is a reset button and I routinely throw my long-term goals in the garbage can. So, I’m going to schedule text messages to myself so I will randomly receive messages to keep me on track. Or give me the opportunity to change my goals as time goes on.
I also–and I cringe to say this–like to make vision boards. Ugh. There I said it. This works well for me but so many squeaky clean, ultra-white, financially supported people have used this term to describe their process and it’s complete bullshit. I hate to even mention it. But it’s part of what has worked for me in the past so it would be irresponsible not to mention it. I’ll be drawing this statement on the walls at home but I’m not going to show it to you. It’s too embarrassing.
I have to be patient. And I have to remind myself to be patient. Not waiting endlessly for some magic to rain from down from the heavens. But patient with myself. I can’t move a mountain in a day. But I can move it bit by bit. And who knows? Maybe at some point, I’ll have a hilltop to stand on? Or even better, I’ll have help. I have a really bad habit of being too hard on myself and isolating myself. Maybe this time I’ll do better?
Okay. There you go.
I don’t usually share this process because I get embarrassed by the possibility of failing publicly. But I think it’s important that I get out of that habit. I know there are other people out there with similar or compatible goals. This time I want to work with other people; I won’t isolate myself in my work and ambitions. Maybe this person is you? Reading this. Maybe we should go out for coffee? What’s next week look like for you?
If you like Instagram, I made a sappy video version of this which you can watch by clicking this sentence.