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A little less than a happy high
Weird Silence
I’m wrapped in regrets this morning. It’s hard to pin down precisely what this is all about because there’s just so much rattling around in my skull. Here, I draw a spider’s web of connections not yet seen, tracing back and back and back. Here I wonder how it was that I was cast out into this world so very unprepared. Here I just think on time and what it means and what it could have meant. If I were in a giant robot cartoon, the stock footage segment would have begun and I’d be making unnecessary hand gestures and saying something weird like, "Maximum existential crisis... NOW!!" or, "There is no time but for REFLECTION!!"

I began studying martial arts when I was seventeen, but because I’ve never been able to settle with a particular style and because I’ve spent far more time outside of practice than in, I’ve managed to avoid the burden of having any real skills. So, after seventeen years, instead of having the build and bearing of a fighter, I have a continuing passing interest.

I don’t even know when I began hiking, but my history there is also pretty spotty. It wouldn’t take long to name all of the hills I’ve climbed. It also wouldn’t take long to realize that the seasons where I didn’t do anything vastly outnumber those where I have. There’s a blind guy I graduated with who scaled Everest in Nepal. I’ve not even come close to managing the Presidentials in NH.

I took my first ceramics class was when I was nineteen. I knew it was something special, but I left it off for inexplicable reasons. It may have been my being freaked out by the grading process or it may have been remnants of maternal guilt over not studying something practical as an undergrad.

Biking? I had an intense season and then went all wonky. There have been periodic attempts to get on the road again, but these have tended to be short lived. Canoeing, another holdover from high school, has suffered the same fate.

It took me ten years to finish off the missing six credits for my BA. I have no clear memory of what happened in that decade. I do know that I was terrified to move away from this city and that I effectively hamstrung any progress I could have made while I was waiting for something to happen. I did not become an academic. I did not otherwise find a career. Last night I listened with great interest as Sam discussed a friend who is now working for the UN. In China. Promoting AIDS awareness. If I could have gotten my act together here and pursued an MPH, that could have been me. Could have been… great words, those.

And all of this is just the beginning.

The weird thing is that the cacophony tends to drown itself out if I let it. For me, depression comes not as a result of reflection, but when that reflection is lost within itself, when it becomes the test pattern sound that is the backdrop to all that I do and think. It is the difference between feeling grief and loss and simply internalizing it. In the one case, I am aware, active, and capable of change. In the other, I internalize my failures and begin to believe that it is a natural state of being.

Current Mood: stymied

14 comments or Leave a comment
haloedone From: haloedone Date: August 28th, 2003 08:18 am (UTC) (Link)
There's only been one way for me to combat this sort of thing. :/

For me it's standing up to that little voice that says 'You can do that tomorrow' and insist, no, ROAR at it:


And then go out and DO it. Once you do that for about two weeks, it gains momentum...

A deadline (like enrolling for classes or even one you set for yourself) helps too (for me at least).
komos From: komos Date: August 28th, 2003 09:52 am (UTC) (Link)
Sometimes, that doesn't even help. I need to find some way to convince myself on a consistent basis that life amongst the walking dead is not really the way to go.

I need a helper-monkey or something.
haloedone From: haloedone Date: August 28th, 2003 10:08 am (UTC) (Link)
Can you find someone else who's doing the activities you want to do?

I find it SO much easier to get to the gym when a friend expects me to be there with them...

Just a suggestion.
komos From: komos Date: August 28th, 2003 12:17 pm (UTC) (Link)
I've had limited success with that. A lot of times, I end up feeling like a cheerleader for someone else, and I really should devote my energy to making it work for me.
prosicated From: prosicated Date: August 28th, 2003 09:05 am (UTC) (Link)
I suspect that I will be you in a few years. I drop hobbies like jacks, I fail to pick them up again. I'm fighting inertia so hard it hurts. =)
komos From: komos Date: August 28th, 2003 09:50 am (UTC) (Link)

Do not go lightly into that good night

I don't feel so much like I drop hobbies so much as like I drop the few things that are important to me. I haven't been able to get my life going, and I'm at a point where it's starting to show.

It's really not a fate I'd wish on anyone.

The precedeing has been brought to you by Despair. Despair, when you absolutely positively need to wonder why. ;)

(This will pass.)
prosicated From: prosicated Date: August 28th, 2003 10:12 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Do not go lightly into that good night

Ah, yes, despair indeed, and intoxicating perfume.
Your life is going, just not where you want it to. Look at it this way, you're on the horse, just not holding the reins right now. Every point of despair and reflection feels like it's too late, but I think that's wrong, no matter where you think you are or should be.
I drop passions, hobbies, plans, etc. out of fear and then don't start them because I blame myself for not starting sooner or being better. It's a great little catch 22 to get stuck in, really. (the water's fine, c'mon in!)

Why did you give up those important activities martial arts biking canoing etc? I think everyone has spurts of dedication and relaxation, I think that you can trace your interest in them back to being 17 or 19 is a feat in itself. (I'm only 23, but I can honestly say that I haven't got any interests that I've been following since I was 17. I've already dropped the few that bolstered me through high school, and college kept me from developing a lot of burgeoning interests due to the way my time was allocated. )

Just stop being a sourpuss and go do something amazing. And if you happened to give the rest of us some ass-kickings along the way to get us moving, I'm sure we'd appreciate it.
komos From: komos Date: August 28th, 2003 12:14 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Do not go lightly into that good night

Sorry for bein' all poopy. I think the trouble right now is that I've realized that while I've been looking for the reins, my horse has been trotting along to a very bad place while I've been sitting backwards in the saddle.

At any rate, I'm having a day. It will pass.

Thanks for listening in the meantime. ^_^
prosicated From: prosicated Date: August 28th, 2003 12:29 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Do not go lightly into that good night

That's a lovely image, I'm imagining you as that hapless Canadian Mounty cartoon guy now... or the mouse guy in The Labyrinth...

It does sound like one of those days. I have a lot of those. Hopefully it'll just be the one.

komos From: komos Date: August 28th, 2003 12:38 pm (UTC) (Link)
If I must be a Canadian Mountie, be sure to give me one of those HUGE chins and a silly voice. ;)

To answer your question, it's mostly just been fear and inertia, with the occasional injury to drive the ideas home. I think the most frustrating thing is realizing that it's mostly my doing. (That way madness lurks.)
clayrobeson From: clayrobeson Date: August 28th, 2003 09:30 am (UTC) (Link)
I'm right there with ya.

I just was too scared of failure, and too comfortable with the status quo.

WAS being the optimal word. I'm still scared, but I'm not letting it paralyze my actions anymore.

Like haloedone said, you just have to start doing that stuff "TODAY!" and each time it gets a little easier.

We miss you out here. :D
komos From: komos Date: August 28th, 2003 09:45 am (UTC) (Link)
I need to get something going because I'm really driving myself crazy. I once promised myself remarkable things and I can't for the life of me remember what. Bah!

clayrobeson From: clayrobeson Date: August 28th, 2003 09:53 am (UTC) (Link)
Pick one thing, however big or small (like pottery class) and start there. Get the comfort and the confidence, then go.

Mars is close, seize it's power! :D
komos From: komos Date: August 28th, 2003 12:09 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think Mars being close is doing bad things to my head.

And I still think that glazing may be my big stumbling block. I need another epiphany and fast.
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