I’ve been off schedule with these blog posts for the past couple weeks, which means I can no longer pretend that everything is okay. I can no longer point to my timely publication of thoughts and say, “my life is a mess, but if I can make time to post something coherent each week, it must not be that bad.” I can’t show you a post from the last couple weeks where I turn my confusion into a mature life lesson, a palatable takeaway that makes it all worth it. I can’t wrap my situation up with another button sentence saying that ultimately, everything is fine. What I can do is write an honest update on my life.
Right now (and, in the spirit of honesty, for most of the past year), I’ve felt confused, upset, and anxious about pretty much every aspect of my life. And through it all, I’ve felt guilty each time I’ve caught myself feeling anything other than happiness (which is probably why I’m constantly trying to put a positive spin on my posts). I’m anxious, I’m sad, I’m confused, but I’m also unbelievably privileged. I’m a woman, but I’m white. I’m queer, but straight-passing. I’m anxious, but receiving help. I feel like I don’t deserve to feel negatively about my life at all, almost don’t deserve to even think about it. I feel, however irrationally, that I should focus my attention outward at all times. Whenever I log into Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, I feel a little twinge of guilt for every shared post touting another tragedy or sharing a donation link that I scroll past, and a bigger one for every post I write about myself and not the world at large. Even though I often don’t know enough about current events to accurately report on them or bring new insights, I feel guilty every time I post something on here that isn’t directly relevant to what’s going on in the news. I know it’s not my job to stay on top of everything, to respond to every event, to help everyone, but it feels like it is, and it feels like I’m not doing enough. Like I can never do enough. I feel overwhelmed, but also like I have no excuse to be overwhelmed. When so many other people need help, I feel like I don’t deserve to ask for it.
Thus, my blog posts are off schedule. Thus, I quit one of my jobs. Thus, I spent most of this break willing myself to do work, but actually watching TV (and feeling terrible for it). Thus, I’ve taken on all kinds of nasty, unhealthy habits to relieve stress rather than admit to people that I’m feeling stressed. Sometimes I feel okay with all of these circumstances and choices, and sometimes I’m crushed by guilt over them.
I don’t really know what to make of this, or where I’m supposed to go from here (or if there’s even anything that I’m “supposed to do”). And as I type I’m so tempted to say, “Well, at least I know where I’m at, so there’s hope!” But I feel like that cheapens this post, or like I would be lying. Things might end up okay, or they might end up worse–I’m not pretending like I have any idea how it’s going turn out.