Day 04: Out of Hopelessness

michael saminsky
Sep 7, 2017 · 2 min read

“Abandon all hope, ye who puke here.” ~ Dante

Dear Sam,

The seasickness is over and I’m a human again. Sleeping for 13 hours helped a lot. My co-workers don’t look worried when they see me anymore which is a welcome change from the past two days.

It already feels like it was just a bad dream. I had lunch today (big feat) and completed my 12 hour shift, yet less than 24 hours ago it would have required super-human effort just to lift my head up a few inches.

More than anything, it felt hopeless, being resigned to an unchangeable state of being. When you’re sick, and your hundreds of miles off coast in a strange environment, and the ground is shifting beneath your feet, it doesn’t feel like you can change much about your situation.

I don’t think I’ve felt hopeless very often before. I chalk that up to a lucky and privileged life. I’m sure I’ve felt moments of it, but never to such depth as yesterday. It wasn’t hopelessness from the uncertainty of recovery — I was pretty certain that I was going to feel better again soon — but hopelessness from the inability to exact any change on how I was feeling. Nothing I could do could change my experience or get me through it quicker or easier; The only way out was a slow slog through it. It’s comforting to be reminded of how resilient our bodies and minds are (even when they have to be resilient in the face of obstacles they themselves put out).

michael saminsky

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Likes: fisheries + ocean monitoring, smart + responsible use of technology, Jacques Cousteau, people doing stuff in low gravity, giving a good stink eye.