On yesterday's absence

I flat out forgot to blog yesterday. I was sitting here wondering "What did I blog about yesterday?" And I went and looked, and, oops, nothing.

I haven't really managed a good system for structuring my time and priorities here at home. I didn't have an awesome one at school either, but at least I had a tangible schedule. Here I can barely remember what day of the week it is most of the time.

Daily blogging: retrospective

Last week was a really good week for this blog. This week was a really bad week for this blog.

I've been sick, and it's honestly only really starting to occur to me just now that it's possible that this is at least in part regular, run of the mill physical illness, and not some kind of ironic or psychosomatic reaction to the circumstances of my life at the moment. (Though the stress caused by that fear has, doubtless, seriously exacerbated my problem.)

There are at least three emails that I really ought to write today, that I'm definitely not going to. I can say with confidence right now that I simply do not have that emotional energy available to me at the moment.

If things go well, I think what I want to try and do is get another week's worth of blogging done tomorrow.

Averting decision fatigue, Spring 2016 finals

This is the third day in a row of pre-scheduled blog posts -- after I wrote the Monday blog post last Saturday, about how I didn't have the energy to work on stuff I needed to, but I did have energy to work on other stuff, I decided it was a good idea to use this burst of energy to clear up some space later in the week.

This blog is really important to me, but on a day that I'm already struggling to make mental ends meet, deciding what to blog about then pulling it together (when I do, which I sometimes basically don't) takes a lot out of me. Rather than just decide not to update for a week (I've done that before, it makes me feel shitty) I think having a week of pre-scheduled posts will feel a bit more like a weight lifted, a pleasant knowledge that I'm getting something done on schedule just by existing, and having had a good Saturday.

It's been a rough time

I don't want to talk about what's been happening at Hampshire College in the last few days on a public blog. I have no idea whether googling will yield informative results but I'm not going to be offering contextualizing details.

But the last few days have been a difficult time at Hampshire, and right now it's hard to keep anything else on my mind.

One of my professors gave me a journal today. She got them, I believe, for everyone in our class. Mine is red. I started writing in it immediately -- I've tried several times before to keep a private journal, but so far I've failed, for various reasons I may go into in a future post. 

I've been blogging to shake out the day-to-day narrative of my life for years now, but there are often things I don't want to write on the blog -- sometimes because they're private, but often just because they're too difficult to spare the energy of saying them adequately carefully. I think the journal might fill a niche in my self-reflection mechanisms that is under-served or missing.

Photos from "Building the Cooperative Economy: An Unpanel"

Damn, I've been on a roll this week. Two days in a row of posts that took my illness and anxiety and turned them into wholly constructive posts.

Today's not going to be one of those days. I'm in the middle of the only two free hours I have scheduled today and I need to use them to finish an essay. I'm not in crisis, I just can't prioritize my blog today.

Here are some photos I took at a recent event, "Building the Cooperative Economy: An Unpanel."

Not really writing about having a bad day

So -- I really want to blog about my emotional state today, because I'm having a weirdly intense self-loathing day, but I'm running into the problem that I'm realizing I have every time I want to write about my feelings here: I don't want to write about how I feel, and then, subsequently, have anybody bring it up in real life.

A fair number of my friends, on the off chance that they read my blog on a bad day, will tend to attempt to comfort me or sympathize with me about the content of the post. But on a day when I already feel like my self-confidence is pre-undermined, when I'm feeling exhausted or frustrated or sad, I don't want to have any extra moments-of-intimacy that sympathy necessarily comprises.

Especially, as is usually the case, when my mood is in part influenced by circumstances that I didn't write about, because my personal life often directly references other people's personal lives, and I don't like the idea of volunteering the details of other people's lives on my blog. Usually if I don't want to  share details with the internet I also don't want to share those details with people who aren't involved, and there are few things more frustrating than a person trying to solve a problem when you know they don't have any of the variables to work with.

I could always just, like, not ever write about personal stuff here. But the actual practice of writing is helpful, and I do like the idea of being able to keep people apprised of my emotional state without having to have direct personal conversations with everyone I know, or posting about it on social media, because both of those invite exactly the thing I want to avoid -- spending my already drastically diminished emotional energy on conversations about how little emotional energy I have. (I do know, like, three people with whom talking about my emotional state is usually refreshing rather than draining, but that's not most people, and it's not all the time, and anyway one of them is my therapist.)

I had a panic attack today and had to leave a class early, which was a bummer, but I'm pretty happy with how I handled it -- mainly, with a whole bunch of self-care stuff. I cleaned my room, finally went and got the drawers that should be in my room from the closet, and got a tray to put under my leaky humidifier so I could start using it again. I also took a shower, brushed my teeth and shaved, and switched the parts of my wardrobe that were dirty today for clean clothes.

Now I feel like I'm in a kinda weird space where I feel better, but I also feel like it would only take a small push to be definitely not better again. I have more stuff to do later tonight, so I'm trying to keep up on feeling okay.

This blog post is part of that, because I think it helps to be a little bit about my mental experiences, and it will definitely help to know I don't have to worry about blogging later.

Why yesterday was missing and today was late

I didn't realize I hadn't blogged yesterday until about 1 a.m.; when I finally thought to check, it was after I had taken my pills, and I was already so close to passing out for the night that I didn't have the energy to adjust into a sitting position where I could put both hands on the keyboard. 

I hate missing blog posts. I'm going to have to look at that hole on my sidebar, on Thursday Feb. 4, for the rest of the month, plus every time I go back through my archives forever. 

The last time I missed a day was December 8. Before that was June 17. Then March 17, then January 2, then in 2014 there are missed days almost every month until May, when there are only two blog posts. Scrolling back through my calendar like that is like shuffling through a really strange kind of mental decay. I remember why I only had two posts in May -- it's because I was focusing on school, so I put the blog on the back-burner. Now, I'm in a much more intense program than I was in back then, and I'm still managing to keep up -- on the other hand, I have fewer jobs and a safer space to regroup at the end of the day.

Still, I have days like yesterday, in which I just couldn't keep enough of my mind present to get everything done, or today, when I got back from dinner and shortly thereafter passed out for two and a half hours.

Anxiety and freelancing

I talked to my therapist today about finding work, and one of the things we discussed was disclosing mental illness. I know I'm not alone in having a ton of fear surrounding being honest about having mental illness with employers or clients -- it's one of the things that makes this blog a bit of a challenge, knowing that someone who might hire me could look at the last four posts and see that I'm in the middle of fighting off a depressive episode. 

But I think it's possible, on the other hand, that it could be an asset, for certain clients. Other people who need creative work done, who want to work with someone who understands mental illness and who can build a rapport that feels safe in acknowledging the consequences of mental illness on working life. 

I was thinking about presenting myself, not quite as "The Anxious Copywriter," but, you know, with my mental illness up front, not just something I'm honest about if it comes up point blank. I feel like there's a good chance it'll cut a lot of the anxiety out of my work.

I also think I might move the blog page so it's not the landing page on my website, in case of terrible recent posts.

Bad day

I feel completely de-energized right now. I have done nothing at all today. I think I've spent less than an hour even out of my bed. 

There's nothing about this feeling that I want to talk about in public, but I have nothing else going on in my life or mind right now to talk about. It's almost midnight, and I can barely hang on to scraps of memory about what I'm supposed to be doing, so I'm posting this rather than hoping inspiration strikes in the next 45 minutes and ending up missing today's post.

Dammit

Dammit I repeatedly spaced on blogging today and now it's literally four minutes before midnight and I'm playing Hearthstone because I forgot there was something I needed to do before I went back to playing hearthstone

Had a pretty busy day, volunteered at the Bernie Sanders campaign -- I will probably write about that at some point and plan on doing it a bunch more while I'm home from school but for now I have to post this

Dammit

More angst & anxiety, and a brief criticism of Homeland

I feel really annoyed with myself that I've been such a bummer on my blog for the past several days, but I don't have much else to talk about. Right now I'm sitting in the parlor watching Homeland with my dad and playing games on my laptop.

(Homeland is as horrible as the internet has led me to believe -- by which I mean it's a very well-constructed show that has no apparent function other than to promote the belief that any amount of violence or inhumanity is justified in fighting terrorists.)

(I'd write a whole post about that, but all I've seen is chunks of like five episodes in the middle of season 3.)

Merry Christmas

I'm at my aunt's house, glued to the couch in the living room. I'm not sure how much is anxiety and how much is exhaustion. I fell asleep earlier. It's very, very loud.

I think I've gotten worse at coping with family events. It gets harder and harder every year. 

I want to write a better post but I can't under these conditions. I'd wait until I get home tonight, but right now I'm pretty sure I need the relief of having blogging out of the way.

procrastination and decay

I can't think of anything to write about other than how bad my last two posts were. So I'm going to write about that.

I think at this point it's pretty widely understood that procrastination comes from anxiety and perfectionism, right? Like, I feel like I can't do the best possible work right now, so I'll wait until later, when I feel like I can do better. Only later I feel even shittier, plus anxious about how much work I haven't gotten done. And it gets worse, and worse, until I have to hack something together or give up entirely.

Yesterday's awful three-minute post could have been a lot better if, hours earlier, I had been able to force myself to just write a post about how terrible I felt, but right up until literally minutes before the deadline that felt totally unacceptable. I have standards, dammit. Which apparently means my standards are extra low when they can't be as high as they are on my very best day.

I'm frustrated with how badly I've been working over winter break so far. But I can't count on this malaise going away, so I'm just going to have to face up to that. This blog might be pretty complainy until I go back to school. Sorry about that.

Happy holidays.

uuuhhhhgggg (redux)

Dang, it's been a bad week for blogging so far. It's eight minutes before midnight as I type this sentence. It took me about another minute to figure out why that last word, "Sentence," was giving me a typo alert. (It was because I wrote "stentence.") 

Sorry again for the crap blog post. I want to promise I'll make it up tomorrow but tbh I probably won't. I'm not holding it together super well right now.

Notes on the experience of blogging frustration

Today was a very stressful day, for a whole lot of tiny reasons, and now that I'm sitting at the end of it I'm not sure what I have to say. There isn't much I did today that I want to expand on or write about. I don't want to dig into my anxieties. For reasons of a sense of privacy, I don't want to talk about the best parts of the day; for reasons of spoilers, I don't want to talk about the media I consumed today. 

Pretty frequently by the end of the day I'm sitting down at my blog and I don't know what to write about. This isn't a weird feeling for me. Today's only really different in that I don't have the energy to fight the impulse to blog about how I don't have anything to blog about. (It used to be like two thirds of my posts. It was a problem.)

I guess it's pretty in keeping with my overall self concept and existential experience that my natural flow for journaling starts with writing "I don't know," and "I don't want to talk about it." 

Maybe on one of these difficult writing nights I should just push that a little farther, and see what happens.

Then, though, I guess I'll just have to write "No blog tonight" anyway, and link back here, because I doubt it'll be anything I want to share with the whole internet.

Frustrating technology

so I was gonna show y'all a cool graph I made yesterday, but my computer is being unconscionably terrible rn and it's 10 minutes to midnight. I'm writing this on my phone right now.

I definitely should have blogged earlier. I need to figure out how to work blogging into my schedule better while I'm here.

Sorry for the no-content.