.Look Within—Finding Meaning in Darker Moments

Hello, loves! It’s been far too long—how does this find everyone? 

I’ve been away from “Look” for myriad reasons. Before I return to my usual programming, which has evolved from fashion to highlighting the unique and inspiring human beings of Marin and Sonoma counties, I want to dedicate this week’s column to a topic very meaningful to me: how we are doing.

I, for one, am not really okay. Since late 2019, things haven’t felt okay, right up to this moment. I’m sitting on my balcony, riddled with another bout of Covid, despite my two vaccines and a booster, listening to a festival in downtown Oakland and feeling like an alien on planet Earth. The steady drip of bad news—inflation, the tsunami of technology and the disintegration of our government—are enough to leave anyone (me) feeling like the American dream we were promised probably never existed, or, if it did, is dying an ugly death on the table. 

music in the park san jose
music in the park san jose

Mental health is tenuous, connections are difficult. Loneliness tints eyes locked to social media feeds a shade of washed blue. Things like meeting a stranger at a coffee shop—things I used to take for granted—are out of sight in my rear-view mirror. 

I don’t know if things will ever return to the way they were. I’m only 30, and lately it’s seeming like the more years I accrue, the emptier my head gets. It’s hard to predicate anything with the youthful self-assurance all my years of philosophy and poetry gave me during college. Life feels much bigger, much more unruly, though it was all the philosophers and poets were writing about.

There are days when things feel a bit too much. There are days when I feel myself wrung out like a sponge, searching for a drop of humanity left. 

For anyone, anyone at all, who is feeling this way, I offer this Frederick Nietzsche quote, which gives me solace and even a sense of meaning during the darker days: 

To those human beings who are of any concern to me I wish suffering, desolation, sickness, ill-treatment, indignities—I wish that they should not remain unfamiliar with profound self-contempt, the torture of self-mistrust, the wretchedness of the vanquished: I have no pity for them, because I wish them the only thing that can prove today whether one is worth anything or not—that one endures.

Next week, space willing, we will return to our usual programming. For this week, for those struggling with the weight of the world, may we endure. 

Love always and to the best of my abilities, 


Jane Vick is an artist and writer based in Oakland. She splits her time between Europe, New York and New Mexico. View her work and contact her at janevick.com.
Jane Vickhttp://janevick.com
Jane Vick is a journalist, artist and writer who has spent time in Europe, New York and New Mexico. She is currently based in Sonoma County. View her work at janevick.com.


  1. Thank you, Jane, for your insightful observations regarding what could easily be mistaken for an Apocolypse. No joking aside, the situation in this “Global Village ” of ours seems to have more than a sobering effect on most of us. Some even posed the question, could this be Biblical? What’s next…Locusts? ( I am certain that in some parts of the world this probably true presently ) In my attempt to remain Facebook friendly, my advice is to get out there, volunteer somewhere and stay positive… just because.

  2. First off I’m sorry you haven’t been feeling connected with yourself lately, with thoughts of anxiety clouding and compounding your mind. I wasn’t going to comment but I felt something strong to mention to you my savior Jesus Christ. I too have dove into philosophy searching for answers deep in the abyss, but the reason they stop providing a sense of fulfillment is due to the fact they are incomplete. Christ is truly the only way. The world is what provides short term pleasures and euphoria that derails our mind from finding our true purpose. The one and only way to oppose the world and its teachings is to follow Christ. It is the world that fills our mind with the worries of pandemics, inflation, or really anything from the future that causes the anx thoughts. Christ will satisfy your yearning “for a drop of humanity”, for he gives eternal and abundant life.

    • Please sign me up for the newsletter - No


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

North Bay Bohemian E-edition North Bay Bohemian E-edition
boheme magazine e-edition