Green Trees and Grass and Blue Skies Dotted with Puffy Clouds at Druid Hill Park

Picture of green trees and grass with a blue sky dotted with white clouds as the background.

School is back in session which means less time to bike around aimlessly, but also more time to multimodally commute. Both are great, but I already miss the first. That said, one of the glories of being an academic and off the tenure track is that sometimes I have a Thursday morning that is just me reading whatever I want to read, riding my bike to therapy, and then riding around Druid Hill Park afterwards. And yesterday was one of those Thursdays.

The first leg of my bike ride took me up to Hampden, where my therapist is now located. I love that I don’t have to bike up to Roland Park anymore. After a great session with my therapist in which she didn’t say but I know she was thinking I’m her favorite patient, I hopped on my bike to ride over to Druid Hill Park in the sunshine. I was in such a good mood. I ended the last school year in a depression the likes of which I hadn’t experienced since I had cancer. I was burned out, and then more stuff was put on my plate right as classes ended, and it was a lot. My summer was a strange combination of adventure and personal wtf-ery, and it was a lot.

But then August hit, my antidepressant had kicked in, giving me enough space to actually deal with the depression stuff, and by the middle of the month I started idly thinking about new assignment ideas for my classes. I was back to feeling like myself, and oh, I had missed me so much.

Thursday was a celebration of getting-through, and of starting another school year feeling good about things. I turned up the volume on my lil speaker and listened to my now three year old spotify playlist that always feels like home, and I pedaled up and around, back around, up, around, and through my favorite park. I snapped this picture when I couldn’t stand not having a picture to take home of this park. The greens looked so green, the skies so blue, and I was at home in my body, zipping around on my bicycle. Ain’t no sin to be glad you’re alive, I thought to myself, ain’t no sin at all.

Everything is temporary. I know this feeling of joy is as temporary as my depression, so best lean into the joy when it comes around. And as I type this I’m thinking of all the different feelings I have biked through at that park, from grief to ecstasy, I am grateful for Druid Hill Park, bikes, and for my ability to feel all the feelings, that full range of emotion that comes with being human.

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