Yesterday I heard these gut-wrenching sobs echoing around my neighbourhood. I don’t know if the crying was coming from my next door neighbour or some person five doors up from me, but man they were loud, proud, and hugely dramatic about it.

This person was sobbing for Australia, legit. It was almost like comedy crying – literal wails, like “waaaaaahhhhhhhhh” vibes. At first I was embarrassed for this person – who cries outdoors? That loudly? Letting everyone hear their grief? GROSS. Then I was nosy – I wanted to know every last detail about why this person was crying, and I will use the FBI if I have to.

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But after a minute I was like, you know what, this is a MOOD. I don’t know about you guys, but life is fucking hard right now. I HATE EVERYTHING.

I have no motivation to get out of bed! Going for a run is like hiking to Mordor, and I only do like 1.5km! Silly little walks have become silly little picnics, and while it’s lovely to see friends again, I’m only allowed to see four at a time and that feels SHITTY, okay?

Yes, yes, the roadmap. Both Victoria and NSW got our out-of-lockdown roadmaps handed to us recently, but guess what? It gave me no excitement.

I wish the pollies would stop trying to jazz up the most tepid of eased restrictions. They’re like *busting liver open* “YOU GET TEN PEOPLE AT A PICNIC!!!!!” *exploding their eyeballs* “WELCOME TO REGIONAL TRAVEL IN YOUR STATE ONLY!!!!”

I know it sounds ungrateful. It probably is. If only we were all perfect Mother Theresa types who got up each day counting our blessings for stuff like “the sun” and stuff. But fuck it, life is not like that, ok? We all got used to all this privileged life stuff. It’s where we found joy, whether that was being able to see our close-knit family whenever we bloody liked or getting munted at festivals. It’s natural that we grieve the fact that we’ve had it all taken from us for so long.

Yes, the world has changed. There’s no fucking way we’re going back to pre-2020 life, and we need to get over it and find new ways to be happy. But sorry, I reserve my right to wail off my balcony about all the shit I’ve missed out on in the last couple of years.

We’re getting OLD. Our youth? Flying by. We’ve missed two years of overseas travel! Two years of uninhibited casual sex with however many people we liked! I miss dance floor hook ups and making questionable choices like answering “U up?” texts! I miss some guys sweaty armpit in my face in a crowded pit at a gig. I miss house parties and playing King’s Cup and lying all over someone’s bed spilling beer on their sheets with 10 other people I didn’t know 12 hours ago.

I miss all that dumb stuff and all the serious stuff too – I miss my parents, I feel like my career path got obliterated, I don’t know what the meaning of life is in a world like this. I miss feeling safe when it comes to my health, and I miss how easy life was – and how little I recognised it as being easy.

So yeah, we have to adapt. We have to get over ourselves. But fuck it, sometimes it just feels good to have a big old cry over all this dumb shit, because it is dumb shit.

We should be grateful we have our health, homes to live in, and money to get by. Many don’t. There are so, so many people that COVID has hit harder than me in my privileged, white person, middle-class bubble – and probably you too.

I am grateful for what I have, and do my best to stay aware of that privilege – but I’m also not a robot, and I feel things that don’t always line up with how I’d ideally like to feel. It’s natural that we grieve these losses, from the big stuff like being disconnected from family to the dumb, little stuff like missing Splendour In The Grass, AGAIN.

So hey, random person wailing like Juliet off your balcony in Sydney’s inner west: I feel you. I don’t know if you’re crying over a break up, a personal loss, or just the fact that you heard your fave Gang of Youths song and have NFI when you’ll see them live again, but your big sob sesh is a mood and I applaud you for it.

Just let it all out.

Melissa Mason is a freelance writer and should be in Horny Jail. You can find her on Instagram or Twitter.

Image: FOX / New Girl