Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Sad Sack, Party of One? Your Table Is Ready.

Okay you guys, here it is. I know I have been a bad neglectful parent to this baby blog lately and I want you to know why.

Your girl has been stricken with the worst depression since Sex And The City went off the air. And yes! I am aware of the movie in the works and yes! You better believe my ass will be throwing a huge party for that occasion, complete with cosmopolitans, high heels, and lots of chicks. In fact, ONLY chicks. But that’s down the line, and that is IF this dream miracle of a movie ever actually does come to fruition. You know how Hollywood is.

What’s been happening with me is far more sinister and unexpected. And I think I have it figured out after much parsing out of emotions, dissecting, analyzing and actualizing by some key friends the likes of which would turn a codebreaker for the CIA green with envy. To put it in brief terms, my world has been turned upside down. And I am just now figuring out how to put back in their place the fragments of my psyche that have shaken loose.

See, for nearly twenty years of my life, all I have known is the comfort and predictability of office life. Sitting behind a desk. Though it has gone radically against my natural biological grain, my daily life has involved, as long as I can remember being an adult, getting up early (ick!), hosing off and getting cute fast, jumping in the car, fighting traffic to the office, getting to the office, getting caffeinated and then following instructions all day, interfacing with a large variety of people (some friends, some annoying gossip-mongers, mostly butthole lawyers) – LUNCH BREAK – trudging through the rest of the day until 5:30 when I get to fight traffic for an hour or more, get home, then have a life with my relationship, dogs, family, friends, etc., anticipate Fridays, vacations and holidays and there you have it.

Now, things are different. Leaving the legal business to become a full-time massage therapist is something I have dreamt about doing for a long time. And things aligned in my life just so to allow me the opportunity to do that. But the ensuing feelings of being lost and starting over kind of swallowed me whole and I was so not ready for that. I had anticipated cartwheels and sunshine and unicorns at this point, not feelings of sadness and loss, sleeping too much but not very well, drinking too much, lack of interest in the usual things that bring me joy, lack of energy to even be around people. It’s been rough. And frustrating. It is in my nature to be happy and joyful, and every morning I would wake up and go “WTF? This shitty feeling is STILL HERE????”

Now don’t get me wrong: the nature of my job now is everything I thought it would be. It is rewarding in a profound way that I have never before known by pushing paper around behind a desk all day. I am helping to relieve people’s pain and suffering and stress, and I have a unique perspective on it since I, like many of them, sat behind a desk for so long and know where that particular brand of stress slithers into the body and sets up residence. But guess what? I am still new at this. Not only are my appointments sporadic and the nature of my job now very physical and tiring, making it difficult to plan my time with any kind of efficiency, but I am no longer the best at what I do. Can you say ego blow?

At my previous jobs, I am used to being the girl who works circles around everybody else and still has room left in my multi-tasking repertoire to solve my girlfriends’ problems, plan dinner for tonight, write a few blog posts, research some obsessive health issue of concern that I must get to the bottom of, make plans for the weekend and then still have time leftover to read Go Fug Yourself.

Now, I am the newbie. I am not the most experienced, efficient therapist in the house. You can’t multi-task while doing a massage – it is a solid hour of pure focus and quiet. Add to this the fact that I am starting at the bottom as far as earnings, which is also a huge blow to the ego. I’m used to being a major contributor to the household, dammit! Not so anymore. It’s like being in my early 20s all over again, that feeling of insecurity, of constantly worrying what other people think of you, if you’re DOING it right. I hated that shit then – I have to re-live it now?

I think there is also some post-wedding-honeymoon-time-of-my-life letdown going on too. You’ve seen the pictures – it really WAS that awesome. But now the anticipation of the whole thing is over and it will never happen again. I will never get married in Italy again, that was IT. And it was so great. What could possibly top that?

And then one recent Saturday night, sometime after my 12th beer or so (I’m exaggerating, but it was up in the high numbers I’m sure), it dawned on my drunk self that I was drinking to get away from feeling like shit. And that is the WRONG reason to drink, my friends. You drink to have fun, to celebrate something, to be with friends, to have a delicious wine with dinner or a funky cocktail in a fun bar. You don’t drink to escape. So I gave myself a break from the alcohol. It’s been eight days, and will likely last awhile since people keep telling me my skin looks fabulous. I can’t help but think it’s because of being off the sauce.

And then the other day whilst facing a mountain of dishes in the kitchen, I blasted “99 Problems” by Jay-Z and started to dance around the kitchen. And like a little kid peeking into a room where he sees Mommy and Daddy are kissing, I giggled sheepishly at myself and realized this is something the normal me would do. Am I coming back? Every day since that moment has told me “yes”.

I wanted to share this with you because I didn’t want you to think I have forgotten about you – I have been wallowing and unsure of how to even tell you this stuff. But I also wanted to share this with you because I want the nature of this blog to be more personal. I love that you are with me on this journey. Now that I have the time and space to focus more, you will be seeing more postings from me, I promise. And I hope you will keep reading. Dealing with problems, especially the ones we can’t see, is part of life, and I do still have a lust for it, even when it’s difficult to feel that lust.

Speaking of lust, The Husband has been so supportive and understanding through all of this and I know my ass has NOT been easy to live with. And for that, I am supremely grateful. To quote Jay-Z, “I got 99 problems but a bitch ain’t one.”


ThatBeeGirl said...

that you would quote jay-z (my fave!) earns major bonus points. that you would write so frankly about this is even better.

encinoblogger said...

Here's the thing about being self-employed: every day is an audition, even if you're not a performer. I'm sure it's a hard transition, but it's gotta be better, in the long run, than the life you described. I dunno; I've always worked for myself, but it's an exciting journey you're on. You might want to allow yourself one Sierra Nevada per day, though. You don't wanna be to hasty about this no-booze thing. Anyway, good luck.