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  • Aelia Zawilska

Disaster Girl

It’s been a year, 2020. You’ve been turbulent, volatile and full of insight. At points, I wish you came with a “warning, it’s about to hit the fan” label. It seems you’ve had my head constantly swirling with thoughts and events to keep up with - that is, current events and not event events sadly. Way to be a party pooper.


You’d think that after this unruly rollercoaster ride, when I got the chance to put pen to paper (or rather fingers to keyboard cause I’m #GenZ like that), to regurgitate my thoughts on everything that’s been happening - it’d be like sipping on a slurpee on a 35 degree Meanjin day: refreshing AF.


But alas, my mind is rather blank: my soul a tad numb. How do you even begin to process having lived through this dumpster fire of a year? I feel like a bit of a shell of a human, and I know I’m not the only one who feels that way. Unfortunately for all of you lovely neighbours, I still haven’t found the solution to this feeling. However, as someone who’s been to a fair few therapy sessions and reads psychology articles for fun, I will give you some of my unsolicited two cents! Disclaimer: This is not to be confused with seeing a professional - I promise someone with a psychology degree is always the better option!


1. First up is the good ole - It is okay to not be okay!


This year has been f##ckd and so, it is only natural we feel the same way. Don’t beat yourself up for however you’re feeling (or not feeling) right now. There’s no guidebook for “How to feel during a pandemic, civil rights movements and an impending climate crisis.” (Unless one of you sneaky sneks has already checked it out of the local library. Please let me know so I can put it on hold next!)


2. Next, build a foundation for yourself wherever you can.


Remember the good ol’ Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs? Well, put simply, it’s best to focus on the bottom of the pyramid right now and slowly work your way up. We function best when our simple needs are fulfilled first, before we shoot for the stars. So eat! Drink lots of water! Get some good snoozes! Keep an eye on your health and wellbeing - whether mental or physical - and reach out if you need a hand!


Before I say goodbye, I should probably mention - I’m honestly writing this as much for myself as you (if not more for myself). I definitely don’t have my s##t sorted and am very much living life in a This Is Fine meme most times of the day. But I’m working on it, and as far as I’m concerned, with everything this year has thrown at us - that’s a revolutionary act in itself.


Words by Aelia Zawilska

Aelia Zawiłska, or Lia to most, is a Polish-Australian creative who goes by she/ her pronouns and has a penchant for wearing all black, buying new houseplants, obsessively reading about Myers Briggs and binge watching K dramas as if it were her job. If you want to say hi, you can find her on Instagram @thechaosthatislia.