Things are bad. Things are really bad. Oh, that's inaccurate. Things are fine. Things are great. I'm bad though. I feel like I've slipped sideways just enough to not fit properly in my life. I can look down on it from the outside and see that it's a good life, but when I'm back inside it I can't feel it on my skin. I went for a great walk today. Eve was home sick but Matt was working from home so I walked over to the drug store and grocery store for inhalers and lettuce and salad dressing and berries and kleenex. It was warm but not sweltering, I didn't think of it as manadatory exercise so I walked at a comfortable pace and looked at people's flowers. I left my ipod behind and looked around at stuff (there are stores in that plaza I never knew were there). I came home and looked over the first part of my new course, which is another point I'm not terribly impressed with myself on. I always thought if I went back to school I would just purely enjoy the learning, and not worry about the marks, not get that twisty achy worry that I won't be a star pupil every time, not worry four years before I'm even close to getting the goddamned diploma that I won't be good enough to get a job. Low self-esteem is, like, so twenty years ago.

It's not self-loathing. I don't loathe myself. I'm not a horrible person. I have some nice qualities. I just need a little tweaking. And goddamn if I don't turn out to be stubbornly tweak-resistant at every damn turn. And I'm tired of all the fruitless tweak attempts. On the upside, the word 'tweak' is provoking some faint amusement at the moment.

This is where I wish strange things, like that I was an alcoholic or drug addict, because then I would have a clear problem set to work with. Also, since I'm not a drug addict or alcoholic, it seems like it wouldn't be all that hard to kick drugs or alcohol. This wouldn't be the case if I was, in fact, a drug addict or alcoholic. I'm sure you see that the general tenor of my current musing is unproductive at best. But they don't seem to have twelve-step groups for vagely disaffected existentially displaced compulsive readers -- at least none that are well-advertised.

Whatever. For lack of any tested therapy, I'm going to go with a liberal application of cashews and zombie stories.


The Mayor! said…
I soooo have those days!! Logically you're well aware that you're not so bad off, certainly there are millions in far worse situations than I....yet, I can't help thinking from time to time, "is this it??!!"....though I seriously think it's all about having done the same damn things, day in & day out, for the last 13 again I ask...Is this all there is??!! LOL!

Pam said…
Been there too. (Except for the compulsive reader thing.) Probably pretty typical for about 75% of us out there. What you really need is an "off" switch for the brain. Cashews and zombies should do the trick. Or a change of scene and a Big Bang episode. Then you should be properly tweaked, for now. Cheers!
Patti Murphy said…
I've had the exact same thoughts about alcoholism and drug addiction. I think these are terrible things and the odds of overcoming them are pretty low, but recovering is such a huge accomplishment and to continue not drinking and injecting etc. would be some sort of focus at least. And I'm not belittling anyone who has these problems. If you shake my family tree, all sorts of drunks fall out of it. So, I know as a close bystander how hard it is to kick it.

It's just that no one applauds the people who just get up and keep going every day. The people who don't fall into an abyss, but rather keep plodding along the trail, slowly and unglamorously racking up the mileage.

No, we're supposed to leave it all behind and start that bungee-jumping bakery business we all dreamed of. Forget school trips and mortgage payments. Ack is right.
Julie said…
"I feel like I've slipped sideways just enough to not fit properly in my life." how perfectly word smithed.

my tweaking usually lasts a day or two or of i am very lucky a week. then i slip back into the real me. i get frestrated beyonf belief, self doubt and wallow. then a good friend of mine comes around, smacks me up side the head and tells me to stop navel gazing.

hey, i'm not the perky perfect person she is. i like the lint collection in my bellybutton and need to see how it's doin' every once in a while.

hope you tweak out.
Mary Lynn said…
I sometimes find myself in that kind of a funk, too. Often, actually. I've often wished I could do something to reinvent myself--be more confident, more enthusiastic about work, more patient, more slim. I go on kicks where I try to do something about it, but generally I fall back into being the me who I am, then I get all frustrated with myself.

I can be a bit of a moody person--one second I can be all laughs and smiles, and then a moment later I'm lost in thought brooding about something I've said that I perceived as stupid that other people may not even have noticed. I'm my own worst critic, and sometimes I start to wallow in self-criticism.

Also, I totally want to know more about Patti's bungee-jumping bakery business.
Ms. G said…
I think I know what you mean too. I think of it as the hot wheels track. My cure seems to be spending money on a lot of nice new bands and clips for my hair which I usually keep long, trying them all on and then getting my hair cut.
Anonymous said…
9 years ago, right after I was married, I didn't have a family doctor. In fact, I hadn't had a family doctor for years, ever since I'd moved away to university. But suddenly I decided this was a problem. So I got the name of someone else's doctor, called, and found out that she wasn't taking new patients.

At this point, I cried alone in a room for 45 minutes. Because I knew that at some point in the future (like, years away) I wanted to have kids. And if I had kids, I'd better have a family doctor. Because if I didn't, I was clearly a crap mother. And my one prospect wasn't taking new patients, and most doctors weren't, and none would probably want to see ME. So, I was failing my children, and clearly not cut out to have them.

Pass the cashews?
Kelly Miller said…
I have those days too frequently. Rather than feel out-of-place in my skin, I get itchy and surly (new cartoon characters?) and generally snap at those around me.

However, I've learned over the years to just sit with those feelings and know that they'll pass. I definitely spend a lot of time faking it until I make it.

I hope you're able to do the same.
Shan said…
@Pam, boy I wish I could switch my brain off some times. That's a fantastic idea.

Hope you're fitting back into your life soon. I hate when that happens.
Patti Murphy said…
@Mary Lynn, the bungee part is how you get the muffins out of the tin. Then you send the muffin tins down the rapids for a good scouring. Looking for funding, interested?
I know what you mean... I feel like that sometimes. Cashews sound like a good solution :)
Amber said…
Yes, I have those days, they usually come in chunks for me, 3-4 days at a time feeling like shit and then feeling like shit for feeling like shit because there is nothing really WRONG with you or your life but it just all feels off somehow. I hope the cashews help.
Lynn said…
Ack is right...I totally identify. I think it has something to do with approaching 40. The feeling that you should have done more, should be doing more, should be something different. I'm ready for something new, but I don't have the energy to make it happen.

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