There’s tons of bad news out in the ether. I can’t deal with it now, I don’t have the wherewithal, but I wanted to do something constructive. So I wanetd to talk about looking at the things you do and letting yourself see the good in it. Western society — or at least this corner of Western society that I live in — thrives on hypercriticality. Things aren’t quite good enough. Maybe it’s because I’m a woman and I will never be attractive enough or thin enough or charming enough on my own, so I really really need to buy a panoply of things to cover my hopeless flaws. Maybe it’s not. Anyway. I was sitting around with friends yesterday and recounted a summary of a story I’d submitted in the hopes of getting it published and I thought at first I wouldn’t remember it properly. (Memory and I don’t … Read on!
There are days I feel like I’m striving toward something, striding. Something purposeful, something meaningful. Today is not one of those days. I suppose it’s all right; I suppose you can’t always be on the march, you can’t always double-time through the shadows with a burning brand smoking up the corridors. But it leaves me hollow and empty and with no motion at all. I don’t like being motionless. Well, that’s not entirely correct; I like being motionless when it’s a thing I’ve chosen, and serves a purpose. Or even if I didn’t choose it, but I know it leads to something else later on. An enforced sabbatical. That’s not what this is, though. It’s a permeating fog of dissatisfaction, and I think that’s what I hate most. If something’s not quite right, I like to be able to try to fix it, or think about why leaving it alone … Read on!
You know the person who, when telling you about some achingly mundane event in their lives, turns it into a sort of narrative epic of questionable insight and imagined valor? That’s me. And I know it’s me, when I’m in the middle of explaining the emotional context of a 3 AM subway ride and I can hear the rusty creaking strain of patience from my friends, and I can’t stop myself. I just can’t. So thank you, friends, and family, for your patience. It’s times like those that make me wonder if my lack of self-esteem isn’t some foreign overlay, because when I’m telling you about the joyous schadenfreude of watching the jerk who cut me off halfway to my destination get pulled over by the cops for speeding, I am certain that you are feeling the righteousness just as much as I am, even though I’m only a third of the way through … Read on!
Home is a hard concept for me, or maybe it’s just hard for me to reconcile it with the usual societal notions of home. Maybe that’s a part of growing up, learning that societal notions are rough guildelines and not strict rules, many of which are set up by people who do not have your best interests at heart. I’ve been home in the US since mid-May. I got here in time to spend the little time my dad had left, and for that I’m enormously grateful. And I was able to be here for my mom, and for me. And that’s what I’ve been doing for the past couple of months. Grieving, logistics, supporting my mom, and having a brief getaway weekend to see a ton of friends in New York City. And seeing family from Mexico! People I haven’t seen in years. Home is absolutely awesome, and home … Read on!
One of the worst manifestations of discomfort, for me, is loneliness. When I’m all right with myself, when I don’t feel like a fraud and things are okay, then I’m perfectly fine with my own company. But when I’m unstable, whether that instability is internal or external, then my own company is just not enough. I regress to the age of eight, with those little self-pity fantasies building up into a world where I’ve been unjustly left alone by my friends, who have realised I’m not that interesting at all and are off doing their own thing. It’s a circular pattern, this loneliness: it feeds off that impostor syndrome — soon people will realise I’m nothing like they thought I was — and in some awful way it becomes a self-truth and I can’t stand my own company, and I’m just an awful person. Is this a manifestation of anxiety? … Read on!
I’m telling nothing new here. I’d say most people have this, at least the conscientious ones. Regardless of what you do, whether it’s traditionally seen as creative or not, if you’re like me, there’s a time when you look at yourself, you compare yourself to other people in your vaguely similar situation and you think: “I am a fraud. I’m here out of luck, I’m here because I said the right thing at the right time. They’re going to figure me out sooner or later, and I’ll be drummed out and ridiculed and shunned.” If you haven’t, well, more power to you. I find it crippling. Listen, I had a hard time contacting a person in the transmedia industry to ask him to be my industry mentor, and I’d already asked him if he’d be willing to entertain the idea in a class where he guest-lectured. It’s one of the reasons … Read on!