Tonight is the second night I’ve cried instead of slept. It’s becoming this cycle where I can be happy with my friends, at work, and even at school- but once I’m home I just…can’t keep it up. My mom even made a comment earlier tonight about how I seemed irritated and my response was just, “I always seem irritated.”
Where it stems from is something I know people will call trivial. After all, I graduate college in spring, have a roof over my head, a car, two loving parents, friends, a very spoiled cat, two dogs…there shouldn’t be any complaints. I should be happy all the time, right? If I’m not I’m suddenly this ungrateful spoiled brat, right?
It’s funny to say out loud, but I honestly wonder if I’m sinking into depression. The suicidal thoughts have been hiding just below the surface since 2015 when I was first assaulted. Since then it’s been like a wave with highs a lows and just when I think the high is permanent- it crashes back down just like a true wave.
I prefer to keep things to myself. I find it better that way and I don’t mean to be selfish when it comes to that. I like to give off the idea that I have it together most of the time or more aptly put: “cannot be sunk”. The truth is that everyone can sink and it’s just a part of life. Still, I do my damnedest in part because I don’t want to be a sob story and because I like being the rock for those I care about…and when you’re the rock you have to keep standing no matter what.
Anyway, it’s almost been two years since the incident and I feel like I’ve gone backwards instead of forewords. Part of it was expected after the second assault over the summer, but I guess I hoped I was stronger than I am. My decisions in my personal life are becoming more rash and I can see it even as I make them. It’s all an attempt to try and prove to myself I’m not “damaged goods” through a guy who’s honestly probably tired of my shit by now.
The truth is I can’t try to use someone else to pull myself out of that mindset because at the end of the day I see myself as damaged no matter what. There was a time I would put on makeup to try and hide my flaws, but also as a sort of mask between myself and the world. Nowadays I don’t even do that because that would require looking in the mirror.
O.P. 28 September 2017
Since our move out west I’ve fallen into a bit of a routine with working from home. Usually, I finish my workday between 2:30 and 3:30, then spend another two hours or so messing around online before hopping in the shower. Last night things took an unexpected twist however, when I left my office to find it already dark out.
Five-thirty and full night mode.
I don’t think I ever recall it being dark so early when I lived on the East coast. Would the sun be setting? Sure, but it wouldn’t be completely dark yet.
The strangest part was I randomly felt super productive. Like, “Well look at everything I’ve gotten done before six!”. Meanwhile, I don’t think I’d done any more or less than usual.
I’m not sure why, but when I closed the blinds and got my last peek outside…it was heavy. Maybe because of the cold. Maybe not. I’m no stranger to the term ‘seasonal depression’, but with where I used to live, hearing about it was exceedingly rare. Perhaps I felt so off because this is the first time I feel…at risk…
On a brighter note: I’m going to experience traditional winter this year- meaning snow! And every reason to be cozy.
It’s remarkable both how swift and unforgiving fear can be.
A solitary night enjoying YouTube videos shattering at the random outreach of another.
Slowly descending the stairs I make sure doors are locked and blinds shut. My feline lingers in my shadow, hesitating to follow, but rushing upstairs once I beckon.
A hesitant call to my partner temporarily eases my nerves- in minutes they are driving down. They keep me on the line.
I’m sitting in a corner of the office when they arrive. The house is dark and though I hear my partner’s voice…I say nothing.
As they enter the room, a dim computer screen reveals my spot in the corner.
For several moments we sit in silence. I can see them struggling to find words of comfort, but I don’t need them.
I’m just happy they came.
What. A. Day.
Where do I even begin on this…? I guess we’ll take it back twenty four hours when I got the amazing news that: my hours were being bumped up by four (I’m truly happy and not being sarcastic); my company is buying out my contract thus making me permanent; AND starting today I was allowed back in the office!
Side Note: I’d been working at home for almost three weeks at this point since returning from Washington State mid March.
Needless to say I was PUMPED this morning. I might have been a little slow to rise, but once I was up I kicked it into high gear. I put on some work clothes, took my cat to his veterinary appointment, then went off to work with my box of supplies and everything. When I got there my coworkers welcomed me back and caught me up to speed with the organized chaos which had become my desk. I met with one of head bosses to get an update on my employment; made sure my pay wouldn’t be taking a cut, then filled out the I-9 and W-4. I was able to fall right back in the groove while clearing the build up on my desk…the day was just flying by and I was feeling not only super productive, but also had peace of mind at being outside my house for a bit.
Then the other shoe dropped.
Without giving out too many details I’ll sum it up by saying the other head boss noticed my presence and immediately took issue with it. Within twenty minutes of him spotting me I was dismissed for the day to work from home until…who really knows. I said okay, let the other head boss know, then said my goodbyes before heading back on home.
Do I understand the concern? Of course I do which is why I wasn’t trying to plant my feet and say “
I feel fine and should be allowed to stay“. Have I already quarantined for well past the recommended fourteen days? Yes. Has anyone who lives with me shown any symptoms? No. Does any of that really matter? I don’t necessarily think so.
Things are hectic right now and to me it would not only be selfish to argue, but unnecessary since I already have everything I need to work from home. If anything I think I was just kind of bewildered by the situation because of the spike in tension when I thought it had been a communal decision.
Weeelp. Back to working from home and listening to deep dive videos on YouTube!
It’s very rare my mom and I have a disagreement. Maybe once every one to three years we have a blow out, then after a few days we reconcile. Since our last blow out; at least two years ago now, I made an effort to not bottle things up and effectively voice my opinions with her without freaking out- specifically if she threw out the tried and true “you’re too sensitive” comment or some variation of it.
Now putting aside the dismissive everything about that phrase and how it makes me go from 15 to 70…I’ll get back on track.
As of today I have been unemployed for 18 days.
In that time I’ve gone on two interviews; one last Wednesday and another yesterday morning. Ideally, I’ll receive a call back by the end of this week. Cynically, I’ll remain on the grind of job searching.
It’s strange. In the past my jobs always overlapped with exceptions being when I returned from abroad. This time; however, the business simply closed and I’m not sure if it makes sense to say, but: it feels like a bleak right of passage into adulthood.
Obviously, I don’t want to make it seem “rad” as if it’s a box on the ‘adulthood check list‘ or something, but I’d be lying if I said I’ve never met an adult who hadn’t been unemployed for an extended period.
Now since my current stint is pretty new/short, I want to instead highlight a conversation had with a friend. Turns out she’d been unemployed for six months, found a job, and was then fired a month and a half into it. She explained how she began to feel useless because she wasn’t ‘contributing to society’ and fell into a depression. Being fired was understandably a huge blow after everything and it had taken a lot for her to get to a good place again. Even with all the self progress though, there was still the looming knowledge of her savings running low and her still being unemployed.
So what do you do in that situation? I’m sure there are countless different answers and thankfully she wasn’t asking for advice.
Listening to her purge frustrations and feelings helped put a lot in perspective for me. Truthfully, there was a small voice in the back of my mind asking: is this where I’m headed in the long run? But mainly it reinforced the reality of what a fortunate spot I’m in with my current living situation.
Do I feel like a loser because I’m not working? Yes, but I’m luckily in a spot where I can wait for a job of equal or higher value to my last position. So long as I’m doing my due diligence in applying to jobs and going to interviews then I should be content…right?
Side Note: There’s this other voice in my head saying, “if you really need a job then get a lower paying one. get a part time one.” and I’m torn.
Distance is a crazy thing.
It can be difficult to get used to at first: the gradual separation from someone you were close with. It can disrupt your sense of ease and way of going about your day- suddenly there’s a gap. It can make you insecure as idle thoughts fill the space…
On the other hand, it can be therapeutic: relearning to go on independently. It can help focus your priorities without the influence of someone else. It can make you more productive. It can provide answers to questions you hadn’t even considered. It can bring out changes in your perspective and behavior for the better.
Ultimately, it’s proven to be cathartic for me. It was rough in the beginning, but allowed me to purge things I’d buried so deep I never thought they’d see the light of day again.
Did it suck? Yes. Was it worth it? Yeah, I’d say so.
To feeling better and living better.
O.P. 26 October 2017