I got married seven months ago. (Give or take a couple of days, but what is a couple of days in pandemic time anyway?)
Prior to the lockdown I made the seemingly inconsequential decision to make my computer desktop background a randomized slideshow of our wedding photos. In retrospect I think I did this a little before Halloween in anticipation of a small family get-together, and figured it would be a nice surprise for my in-laws, who hadn’t seen the polished versions of the photos yet. The slideshow had the desired effect, of course, and everyone enjoyed gushing over the pictures while chatting about how much fun both the ceremony and the reception had been.
(Pro-tip to anyone out there planning a wedding in the somewhat near future: go small. Go to the courthouse. Wear comfortable shoes. You will be handsome/beautiful regardless, and complete strangers will cheer for you. That is a magical experience.)
Anyway, this post isn’t really about my wedding, or my wedding photos. It’s about how now in this time of social and physical distancing, one completely absent-minded decision I made in preparation for a holiday party last October now reminds me daily, hourly, every time I minimize an application or lock my laptop screen, that I am loved by so many people. The people in those photos crossed continents and international borders and, in one instance, even the Atlantic Ocean, out of love for us, for me.
And that love has nourished the shit out me these last three months while I’ve struggled to claw my way up and out of the black pit of despair known as Depression(™).
It’s an ongoing struggle, for the record, and not one that I anticipate definitively ‘defeating’. But I’m going to make time to talk more candidly about my experiences here because the instinct to play one’s cards so closely to one’s chest when depressed is precisely the opposite of what one needs to do to heal.