Well this has been a week.

I just sat down and tried to update my goal list to see what, if anything, I could cross off of it. (Answer: not much). On four out of the five workdays I came in early. Two out of five days I stayed late. Two out of five days I took a short lunch. One day I drove.

It was that kind of a week.

Thanks to the fires, the Curmudgeonly Lion didn’t work on Monday, so I took the car to work, which was good because it was one of the start-early-AND-stay-late days and I was glad to not have to take the late bus home. But I didn’t get anything else done: no walk, no writing, no blog. For the rest of the week I resolved to take the bus no matter how early I was supposed to start: I needed my writing time! And my walks!

Man plans and god laughs.

Thanks to the Malibu fires, all the canyon roads to the west of us were closed forcing all the morning traffic through the 405 pass. Unsurprisingly, this made the morning commute excruciatingly slow. I left the house nearly an hour earlier than usual, but only managed to arrive at the office about twenty minutes before everybody else. On only when I took the train for the last leg instead of walking.

So I could get in some writing, but a morning walk was beyond my grasp.

A lot of things have felt beyond my grasp lately. The mood swings have persisted and gradually eroded into depression, complete with crying at my desk and persecuting voices in my mind telling me I’m not good enough and never will be and no one cares or will notice and why bother, what’s the point?

And what does one say to that, exactly, when it comes from outside yourself but inside your head?

The voice is a liar, obviously. This much I know. My progress has actually been pretty solid lately: not earth shattering, but measurable and consistent which is probably better in the long run. I’ve nearly completed a difficult chapter of my novel, and I completed a twenty page sequence for my screenplay, so yeah: I should be feeling pretty good right now. But mostly I’m spending a lot of time just trying not to feel anything.

Mostly what I feel is restless. And trapped. By what? I couldn’t say. All I know is that I have a constant sense of needing to be elsewhere. Anywhere. Doing something else. Anything else. Being another person. Anyone.

Me. The same person who gets annoyed when the morning routine does not include a walk.

By Wednesday I was practically beside myself with my own agitation. The Curmudgeonly Lion and I went out to a social mixer to try to meet some new people. I was uncharacteristically keen to go: me, wanting to go out to a loud bar with a crowd of people to make small talk with no other agenda than to maybe make some friends? Who was I and what has I done with the real me? The normal me? The right-hand me?

It did help. A little bit. It at least broke me out of my usual loop for a little while.

The next day I listened to music nearly the whole day, to drown out the voice. It helped. I mean, I hate to be that millennial who insists on wearing earbuds all day, but it’s cheaper than meds and therapy, so if that’s what I need to do to keep myself functional then that’s what I need to do.

So at last: Friday. Another work week done. Maybe I’ll be able to regain some balance over the weekend. Fingers crossed.

~ by Gwydhar Gebien on November 16, 2018.

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