Today was a turning point for me.
Another morning up at 4:30. Another morning out the door and on the river before the sun has been cued by the birds to rise. If my emotional wellness were a river, then today my perfectly flowing, emerald green, snag-free, satisfyingly opaque waters became turbulent, raging, and brown. I know what triggered it which only adds to the frustration. I’ve said it 1,000 times. Fishing is my therapy. It’s my foundation. As a little girl, it’s where I found my peace. Home was loud. Home was disheveled. Home was chaos fueled by the addiction of my parents. But not the river. The river was my sanctuary. To me, fishing is going back. It’s me running up to my dad at 10 years old and giving him a hug. It’s me seeing the excitement and joy on his face when I’d make a surprise visit after he got sick. It’s me being able to talk to him and pretending that the wind in my ear is whatever reply I want it to be. It’s me being close to her. It’s me slowing down the time it took for the doctor to say, “Her body is shutting down” until the time my knees hit the ground beside her. It’s me thinking and rethinking what I could have done differently to avoid what’s brought me so much pain. It’s me putting the pieces back together.. however long that takes. At some point today, that therapy session ended in my head and I literally just wanted to land a f*%^kng fish. I began thinking of all of the things I’ve put off doing to stand on that rock. All of the chores that need to be done and all of the tiny little responsibilities that I need to address and haven’t. It’s worth noting that in between alllll of the thoughts, some of my favorite people were landing them left and right beside me. The joy, the peace, the anticipation was replaced with resentment, defeat, and a sense of failure. My lips are chapped. My skin feels beyond repair. My nose is peeling. My fingers are bleeding. My pride is struggling. Strip away the therapy sesh and this is the addiction. Steelhead, you’re killing me..