Friday, November 27, 2020

notes and things | 11/27/2020

This morning, I slept really late and have been picking through leftovers and basically just existing for a minute.  I meant what I said in yesterday's post about pretending to be a human amid a national public health tragedy that will only get worse in the next month or so.  Even if everyone did what they were supposed to over the holiday and all infections ceased right this moment, there are so many people already sick and on their way to a sad story. But even still, I suppose we go, but it's exhausting. Obviously moreso for health care workers and people on the front lines, but even a bit for other people trying to get through life where the markers are still the same, but the morale is lagging. I have these moments, in conversations, in the lit community, on social media, in staff meetings about whatever, where I am like "Why the fuck does this even matter?" Putting up the front of being a normal person in a totally normal time who writes emails and makes makes plans is itself exhausting, not to mention the amount of mental energy expended on, ya know, not getting covid (in my apartment building, on public transportation, at work). 

I keep thinking about why I'm not able to accomplish more than I am (in creative things, in work thngs), and i secretly know the answer, but I feel like I'm being a little bitch about it.  I am a firm believer in faking until you make a good mood, but it's harder more days than it's not.  The other day I was up early and doing my bit of daily writing over coffee and I stopped and stared at the screen for a good 5 minutes wondering what the point was when everything was so awful.  Yet at the same time, writing and other kinds of work help to center me a bit, so I have to keep it up to survive.  The worst bout of depression I've ever experienced in my early twenties lacked that centering, and also any amount of structure (I was in grad school the first time and pretty much  only had classes to occupy me, so there was a lot of time for crying in the dark of my apartment all through January.)  Mostly  anytime I feel that mental ship start to capsize I can power through, clinging to those structures, those routines, until I'm feeling better.  My mother's death was like this--I was never more productive than when clinging to those ropes, but this, while less personal, feels like those ropes are ultimately, just hanging there really attached to nothing at all. 

So I get angry.  I get annoyed.  It makes me tired. It makes me enjoy the things I usually greatly enjoy a lot less.  I've tried not reading the news, but in paying attention to positivity rates and infection counts, it feels like a little more control (obviously just in my head.)  But they make me more anxious and it's a cycle I can't quite break free of.  I worry about my dad and other older family members. I get super rabidly pissed at family that doesn't take it seriously, the blind spots in even the ones that do.  I have a hard time dealing with my own anxieties about getting sick, let alone everyone around me. There's no way out but through, but damn...So I try to fake it by buying my Christmas decorations and planning my usual decorating/cookie making /trashy holiday movie weekend earlier than usual (and by making I mean eating more raw dough than The holiday lights downtown, which usually involve the fanfare of a lighting parade, actually  went up surreptitiously and without announcing themselves a couple weeks back.  As if they too are just going to fake it til they make it.