Sunday, May 22, 2016

I Don't Know Where I Began

I really did not mean to leave this idle until May.  I'm not sure why I wanted it to go like that, or if I did want it, or if there's really any answer beyond laziness.  But I did.  I have things to say, so I guess it's time to say them.

Seeing as my last post was in late January, I have about four months of good news to condense into a few lines, for those who read this and wish to know what the state of my life is.

The best news is that I have achieved a small measure of economic security, and have done so by acquiring what is probably the closest thing to a dream job I've ever had.  In February I started working as a full-time teacher at a small charter school in rural Oregon, just outside of Salem.  Shortly thereafter, I rented a two room apartment in downtown Salem, where I reside to this very day.  Thus from the jaws of dejection and defeat, I have been plucked by good fortune to something very like victory.  In the big scheme of things, I've become one of the lucky ones.

What a change, huh?  And no record of it on The Wave Function Junction for four months.  I must be busy with the new job to have been so negligent.

Well, I have been busy.  Teaching social studies is hard work, especially if you want to do it right.  But I haven't been as busy as all that.  Whole weekends pass by where I mostly lie on the couch and engage in distraction rather than creation.  I scribble a poem now and then, and I do keep up on creating assignments for my students.  Very occasionally, I have even found time for exercize.  But it would be a stretch too far to say I'm at the top of my game.  In a way that I haven't quite perceived before, I can see that I am still sick.

Since looking my depression in the face for the first time over a year ago, I have become aware of what it means to be mentally ill.  Back then, it meant idle thoughts of killing myself, against a backdrop of endless waiting for a natural death.  It doesn't mean that so much anymore.  The sertraline pills have done their work of evening me out, I suppose.  And to be entirely fair, I have learned so much in the past year, about myself and about the workings of the mind, I have begun to heal myself from the worst wounds.  The world has become survivable. 

But as I said, I still feel sick.  I still feel cut off from the world, cut off from passion and love.  I can feel these things, and it is joyous when a connection is established by communication, or by physical presence.  But in my inevitable retreat to solitude, I love without anyone to love, and I despair.  Other people see it in my eyes, but they do not see the cause.

Maybe it's just perpetual dissatisfaction?  Maybe it's never enough to have a job and a home, I also need a raise and a vacation and a woman to sleep with me and why not a shiny new everything?  Maybe it doesn't matter.  I'm better and I'm getting better.  As I have reminded my friends, and as I struggle to remind myself, the world inevitably changes with time. 

And I have the time.  I have admitted it today, and that's why you're reading this.  I'm still (unbelievably) not yet thirty, I'm young and reasonably healthy, and getting hungrier every day.  Who'd have thought a meal of life could cure the blues?  Well, it can't.  To do that, I have to finally brave the bureaucracy and figure out how to transform my benefits package into actual health insurance, and get some damn therapy in me (and maybe about a million more pills, who knows).  Perhaps discovering the true love of my life will have a positive effect, too. 

The world has become survivable, and it turns out I'm sort of a survivor.  That's the news as of May 2016.  Hopefully it gets more interesting from here.

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