Dealing with Things.
You never quite notice it When It All Began. At first it might be a medium-sized Thing - big enough to take the wind out of you. Before you can recover, a series of small Little Things rain down. When the Final Blow hits you square in the face, you’ve already anticipated it. It doesn’t come as a surprise. But the magnitude, beating against weary limbs and tired heart, wears you down more than you thought you could handle and you wouldn’t admit it to yourself that you need help.
There you are.
Physically. Emotionally. Mentally. Tired.
We all have ways to cope with Things. When I was younger, it was a mixture of cynicism, workaholism and escapism.
When my parents were divorced, I read books voraciously to find a voice I could relate to, finding a way to escape and sublimate my anger into hours of being alone. When my father died a month before my final exams, I read my books, studied hard and aced my exams. Get your grades right, don’t let them see you weak. Only when it’s over do I allow the emotions simmer over like lava. Cynicism protected me from disappointment by allowing a safe distance between myself and people. It allowed me room to assess and filter those who would be perceived as a threat to my own peace and those who would leave me be.
These methods worked in my adolescent years. It’s okay to be full of angst. It’s okay to have a vague sense of misplaced misanthrope. It’s okay to be full of strange teenage hormones. Everyone is just like you. It seemed perfectly alright to pour it all into a Livejournal and allow the debris to settle among people who were dealing with Things in the same way.
But it doesn’t work when you’re 24. Escapism loses its charm when you have responsibilities. Cynicism poisons you when you have close relationships. It poisons them too. Workaholism tires you so much more when you no longer have the stamina of a 14 year old. Frankly, the thought of being quietly angry for the next 5-10 years is really, really tiring.
I have been dealing with Big Personal Things. I admit I’m not very good at it but I’m learning to be better. The magnitude that I face is smaller in comparison which helps puts perspective on things: all in all, I’m in a better position to help than to make things worse.
Thank you misplaced misanthrope, workaholism and escapism. You’ve served me well in the past. For now, I need to be healthier, even if it means my road to panacea is much longer journey.