So next week I'm taking the week off. From blogging and from work. Having a little vacation. Haven't had a real one of those for quite some time. I know I need it, and I know I should demand it, but I'm not really looking forward to it. This is not because I love work. If you've been reading this blog at all you probably know I do not love working. I just expect that it will blow by, leave me feeling unsatisfied and likely resentful that I have to return to work, and not really help me feel at all relaxed and refreshed. I also don't get to go anywhere because freelancers don't exactly get paid vacations. It's costing me enough just not not work for five days.
I don't really know why I started with that. What I mean to say in this post is that I've been feeling very strange lately. I feel like I both gradually and suddenly (somehow) lost my ability to enjoy doing multiple things at once. For a long time, the height of pleasure was playing video games with something on TV at the same time so I could enjoy both, ideally with something to snack on as well. Then for like a year I smoked a lot of weed, and I would do all those things at once and it was great. But slowly, over time, this became less and less enjoyable and more something I just did because I thought it would make me happy, because it did before.
Now it seems I have crossed a line from not enjoyable into actively distressing. Even just getting high while playing video games became impossible. I couldn't even decide on which to play. I would be high and have a sudden whim to play a certain game but before I could even get it set up, that whim would be gone and the thought of playing it was just stressful. It felt like to play a game I didn't really want to play would be a waste of my precious free time.
And when I forced myself to settle on a game and play it, I would get maybe five or ten minutes in and be like "I hate this" and have to turn it off immediately. This happened again and again as I tried different games while high.
I don't know how the fuck I managed to do this to myself. But now it feels difficult to enjoy anything. I haven't smoked since Sunday and I'm a little afraid to try getting high again. The only games I ever want to play are Overwatch or Candy Crush. Thankfully, I can still play Candy Crush while watching TV, I think because I can pay attention to what I'm watching almost fully while playing such a mindless game. But I played part way through the new God of War that everyone absolutely loved months ago and stopped. I'm not interested in it anymore. I used to love open world games with lots of quests and things to collect and I've played every other main God of War game because the fight mechanics were just so damn entertaining, plus I enjoyed the challenge.
Do people just stop liking most video games? It sounds like depression, and in these past weeks I have had numerous depressive episodes featuring pretty deep depression. But when I'm not in one of those, like right now, I still don't want to play anything. Not even Sims 4, and I did not get all that I could have out of the Pets expansion I bought not too long ago. For $20!
I find myself sitting down on the couch and putting on Netflix comedy specials and just watching that and not even looking at Tumblr at the same time. And this probably seems like a good thing. We should all stop stuffing our brains with as many distractions as possible. For quite a while I would watch shit like new episodes of the Great British Baking Show over and over because I would be playing video games at the same time and I would miss so many details. And for a while I was like, "great, this extends the life of the new season," because they're always over too fast.
But was I even enjoying it? Was I even able to become emotionally invested in the contestants? I don't think I was.
Yet now I'm in this weird state where I'm doing one thing at a time because I can't even bring myself to try playing video games at the same time, but I feel restless and on edge. I feel like I'm not maximizing the enjoyability of my free time.
What did I do??? I feel like I broke my brain. I just don't know how I got here. It's like I can't even remember what it was like before when I enjoyed doing all these things at once and looked forward to it at/during work every day. I kind of feel like I can't remember what it felt like to enjoy things at all, which is scary. Were video games fun before? Now, even with Overwatch, I get the urge to play it but while playing it, I don't really feel anything. What does having fun feel like? I can't remember.
So that's what's been going on with me.
I've been doing a lot of thinking lately. And that has felt good, in a way. I think. And I've been reading that book. But in some ways I feel like I've been changed. Did I sustain brain damage somehow? At the same time, I feel like for my whole life I've looked back upon myself and who I was and how I felt as little as just a few months ago and not recognized myself. How was I ever as happy as I was college? How was I ever going to an office building every day and working right next to other people, in a call center, in marketing, in localization? How is it possible that I worked on a campaign to pass a referendum in the state of Washington? What was it like to be unemployed? Did I really write daily articles for a feminist website for months? How is it that I used to write only up to two articles per day but also on weekends around 4 pm?
What did it feel like to be happy? What did it feel like to look forward to things?
I can still feel joy, though. I am still prone to uncontrollable squealing at the sight of baby animals. I can't help but smile ear to ear when my black cat is sitting there seemingly oblivious to the fact that her little pink tongue is sticking out a little bit from her fuzzy cat mouth. But I feel strange. I feel different.
And this is all I can seem to bear to write about. At least this week, I can't do the same news reporting kind of blogging I used to. That shit is my job now, up to four articles per day, though weekends off, mercifully. But still. This blog might be different for a while. Not so much Not Sorry Feminism as Lindsey's Animated Gif and Incoherent Existential Rambling Emporium.
Maybe I am just different, and I need to get used to the change. Maybe I'll learn to find joy in being with others and being out in nature again. Maybe I'll come out of this transition and settle into a happiness beyond anything I've ever experienced. Maybe I have brain cancer. The future is a box of mysteries!
I hope I'm not worrying anyone too much. I feel strange, but I haven't been in a deep depression yet this week. I'm gonna do a lot of thinking over my week off, and after that probably go back to therapy. Either way, I'm not going anywhere. Because I can't afford to, ba dum psh!
But seriously, I am not dying before Trump. I will hear the news of that man's demise before I leave this world.