I’ve forgotten how to blog, I think. Or how to think, I blog. Heh. Classic blog humor. What else is there to think about lately but the disastrous state of this sad republic, only nobody—NOBODY—especially me—wants to come here to moan over that. I’ve reached my limit on exactly what and how much of this toxic stew I can ingest before it all starts leaching through my bones. Enough already. That world is banging on the lid of my brain box 24/7 and I will not invite it to live here. Not here on this stupid blog. Not here, in this weary head. I will fight the fight where and however I can, but no more shouting into the wind. Enough.
I drove myself to the emergency room a couple of months ago, on a Thursday night, just as the sun was setting, the week before I started my new job. I’d been feeling something strange in my chest for a couple of days and ignoring it, as I generally do, because I am a raging hypochondriac who self-treats through denial. (Every headache is a stroke, every muscle pain is cancer. That type of hypochondriac. The fun kind. But the best part is, someday at least one of those things will probably be true!)
This time, however, I figured I shouldn’t wait until my first day on the job to see if I was having a heart attack, so I finally shamed myself into action. It was a strange experience, and to be honest the smallest and the loneliest I have ever felt in my life, being wheeled down the long corridor of a quiet and almost-empty hospital wing, being tended to—being cared for—by kindly and competent strangers. I felt very sorry for myself, but in the end it was nothing, of course. Vitals were good, blood was good (“good blood” is not a medical diagnosis!), and there was no sign of anything but
I’ve been experiencing some stress, I guess. That is not easy for me, a sweeper of things under rugs, to admit. It’s been a harder year than I knew, and I could no longer ignore it. That shit was leaching through my bones.
I read this piece by Heather Havrilesky this morning (she of “Ask Polly” at The Cut), where she offered some sage advice way back in 2016 to a fellow sufferer (2016! what universe was that? are we not all of us fellow sufferers by now?) on how to survive in a world gone mad:
Keeping a calm space for yourself, where you remember what matters, where you believe in the goodness of people, is fundamental. Our survival depends on it, more than ever. We have to reach out to each other and believe in each other. We have to believe that we can make our way through this shit storm, and fix what’s broken.
We don’t owe it to the world to wallow in the darkness, to stay depressed, to mourn indefinitely. We owe it to the world to believe in this day, and to believe in the future.
Anyway, it’s perfectly true that this insane country is a crap heap piled on top of a rat’s nest that’s boiling inside the mouth of a gargoyle, etc., etc., ad infinitum. I can’t change that, and I forgive myself for it. This life—my life, your life—is bigger than that. It has to be.