I was joined on my morning commute by a grasshopper. They are weird little creatures, especially in pre-dawn morning hours, looking like malformed aliens of some distant reality, or ourselves on bad days where instead of addressing our root issues or practicing self-care we lash out at others, but maybe less ugly. This one had rested on the lower left part of my windshield and hung on as I drove out of my apartment-mansion complex.
Throughout these over 900 essays, if there’s anything I’ve learned about myself, it’s that I have the most energy in the morning then it fades off from there. Morning’s dew is indifferent to evening’s stew of failures and shortcomings throughout the previous day. My dreams abstractly tell me what’s wrong and vaguely points out how I can fix these benign problems. My evening routine: prepare my coffee, lunch, hydrate, soak in the tub, then go sleep.
It’s taken years for me to develop a sort of hardened empathy for drivers. I’ve always understood when people would drive erratically because of mistakes, but ohhhh those people… the ones that cut you off! Surely, they are the most terrible of people! The thing is, though, driving is actually dangerous even when there aren’t other drivers around. Crashes, mechanical failures… anything. Why, then, focus on them? Shouldn’t we rather focus on driving safe ourselves?
I don’t believe in the power of donating to companies to provide for my community. After throwing myriad items into the trash compactor, some better than what I own, and watching these kind-hearted gestures from you and me become destroyed for no other reason than because these items were old stock or didn’t sell, while I may still donate and buy from thrift stores, it’s with all altruistic façades removed. Sobriety is like that, too.
Sometimes after seeing a show, it will be like all of the motivation and energy is sucked out of me, like I’m sick, but without physical ailments. Maybe it’s expectation versus reality? I get this feeling more often than not when achieving any goal. Once I’ve done it, then what? Find another mountain to climb, another obstacle to overcome, or another thing to see? Sometimes it’s like seeing through someone else’s camera is more exciting.
Was it the child that coughed her throat out for most of the plane ride that made me feel sick today? The weather change? Not stuffing myself in good restaurants? I feel exhausted with the sort of head cold that would make a good excuse to not get out there and do anything at all, because after all, not feeling well is always a good excuse for not doing stuff, right? I don’t quite agree.
I’m writing this on the tail-end of a headache. It’s still in there, lingering; lumbering its way through my body. There’s still a massive pressure behind my eyes, in my neck, and in my ability to concentrate. Normally, all processes are clear, I can focus, and do my work unimpaired. Headaches are like a sudden inebriation. My concentration and willpower are massively impaired as I’m struggling to even want to continue writing about this experience.
I’ll be in a different space when this publishes. Different job, different experiences… different lifestyle? The space I’m in as I’m writing this in late August is mostly a negative space. The veneer is nice and I’m meeting great people that are generous with sharing themselves, yet deep down, it doesn’t feel right. There are malaise and disquiet rumbling underneath my psyche. Why isn’t it good? Let’s explore, to help the “me” of October 13th.
The day before I sobered up is one I’ll always remember, not so much sequentially, but more cerebrally than that. I was working at the thrift store at the time, directionless, unmotivated, blaming others for the problems I wasn’t addressing, and just squandering my life. It was a difficult job. When I wasn’t jumping into moldy trailers or being lambasted for working “slowly,” I was trash-compacting high-quality goods. Then… maybe a glimpse into something greater…
When things get a little too weird for me, this phrase gets me in a good space: “reality is subjective.” If everyone observed the same reality equally except for me, then I’d be feeling pretty left out, you know, but it’s not! If you and I observed the same situation, we both have subjective filters. I wear glasses for vision impairment, which innocently changes my perspective of reality, but let’s dig into this deeper still.