The Black

May 10, 2018

I could tell you it comes without warning, but I’d be a liar.

I mean, it’s not obvious enough that I can mark a day on the calendar with “You are just gonna be fucked for a while, so get your affairs in order,” but I do know in certain ways that it’s coming. I usually don’t listen right away, though.

Because you don’t want to listen about that, do you?

Things I do know:

~The Black strikes every four to five years. I can’t predict the season but the year? Certainty.

~The Black tastes metallic. That’s how I know it’s coming. At first I think it’s a little funny, because I think of all the Paltrows and the Garners throwing kale and apples into their Vitamix in the morning, but for me? Let’s throw in seven handfuls of pennies, grind then up and then make you suck on them for a couple of days. What kind of strange alchemy is at work here, that you can taste impending suckery? But I can. Pennies in my mouth. And then I know.

~When I try to describe what I’m feeling, when I finally admit I’m there, I instinctively reach back behind myself and grab my shoulders, and then claw my way up. It’s a creeper, The Black. This is something that I will never understand, because normally I feel things deep in the gut, but The Black starts in my spine, then settles in my shoulders, and then in a day or so, it’s in my brain.

~Then comes the worst part. You have to wave the flag. It will inconvenience the people who depend on you, who think you are the steady. The given. The car that’s always at pickup. Sorry, upended. Nothing feels good about that, but then again, nothing feels good.

~”Do you need to go somewhere?”

~Sleep for two days. Or three. Or maybe you go somewhere.




It is kind of a joke, but not really.

The Wheel of Fuckery goes from 1-10. When you start to dig your way out of the dark, you rate yourself on the fuck-o-meter.

By now, my husband knows enough just to pull me close and say, “Today?”

I try to exhale. “I’m a six, buddy.”

I’ll take a six.

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

elizabeth May 10, 2018 at 9:00 am

Un abrazo fuerte, mi amiga. (It sounds way better in Spanish than in English to me.)


Dana Talusani May 10, 2018 at 8:15 pm

Du hast mich. Mein freund. *some Goddamn Irish folk song* Le Fuck.


Kel May 11, 2018 at 7:51 am

You’re not alone. Not even close. People are here for you even from a distance, but I know that sometimes even the most staunch supporters can’t stop the Black. And if you need to see Fuck You Linda again, well then that’s what you do. We’ll be waiting with quiche when you return.



Dana Talusani May 11, 2018 at 9:40 am

Kel, thank you! I will give Fuck You Linda your best regards if I have to see her again. You crack me up.


Maureen May 11, 2018 at 4:20 pm

So, so sorry sweet Dana. Echoing the other sentiments here – you are not alone! We love you. And yes, some of us feel/experience your pain, if not scarily similar pain. And from my experience, even when people shout this from the mountain tops, I still feel terribly alone. I get it. I do So, I know, you may not feel this now – you may not “hear” this now, but I am one, reminding you, whispering, shouting….You are not alone. xoxo


Dana Talusani May 12, 2018 at 7:00 pm


Well, that incredibly compassionate response made me cry. But not in a sad way. Thank you.


papa Guy May 12, 2018 at 9:52 pm



Samantha July 2, 2018 at 8:01 pm

I am so far in the black right now. It sucks. I cried in Total Wine today. Not silent tears slipping out behind dark sunglasses, nope, ugly crying, right by the port. I hope the black has left your life for now.


Dana Talusani July 3, 2018 at 11:43 am


Sending you all of the love and understanding in the world. Please be gentle with yourself. And while it is awful when you catch yourself crying in public, I also think it’s important to let those emotions ride out. ((you))


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