I suppose I should have anticipated it–when you start your week at The Happiest Place on Earth, it’s probably going to be all downhill from there. It’s not that there’s anything big going wrong, but I’ve spent the last few days on the dark side of Funky Town.
Our long-anticipated departmental team-building/retreat day at the top-secret location pictured above–postponed several times over the past year–was fun and fruitful, but also indeed long.
Frankly, I was never as enthused about this excursion as everyone else seemed to be, and I was a big factor in its multiple postponements. The timing was never going to be ideal for me workload-wise, especially if it happened anytime between February and May, and I was bracing myself for the physical and mental exhaustion that would follow. (A twelve-hour day in a small group in a crowded place with no downtime? An introvert is going to pay for that one way or another, y’all.)
March and April are the most intense times of my work year, and I’m going into this March knowing I’ll be taking four days off during the month, so I’m pressuring myself to keep focused and get things done during my office hours. During the other hours, even when I have the time to engage with something, I’m struggling to scrounge up the mental energy to do much more than consume. You may have noticed–or maybe you haven’t–that this is my first post in a week.
On Saturday morning, I took Winchester for a long walk and tried to pull myself out of this week-long funk. I worked out some things–and most of this post–in my head along the way:
- I delayed my weekly errands to draft this post, because I needed to write it. I know that I get edgy when I don’t write anything for more than a few days at a time, but I need to do better at summoning the energy to act on that need before the edginess ramps up. It’s putting a little more pressure on myself, but it relieves a different kind of pressure.
- This blog’s ninth birthday is ten days from now, on March 16th. It will be observed quietly, or late, or maybe not at all. On that front, I really don’t need to pressure myself for more right now.
- I’ve finished several good books over the last couple of weeks but have not been able to record my thoughts on them. I’ll have some momentum to get those posts done if I at least start on them this weekend.
- I don’t actually need a wristwatch to tell the time–there’s always a clock around, or my phone if there’s not–but I think I must need it for something. I’ve tried going without one for the last few weeks because I thought mine had stopped working, but I checked back on it, and it seems fine now. I put it back on, and it feels like I’ve made a fix.
Although I rarely picture “closing up shop and walking away”–with my ninth blogiversary in sight, I can pretty well see my way to the tenth, and maybe even beyond–Jamie’s post about working through her own existential blogging crisis really resonated with me in other ways. Maybe it will for you too?
There are days that I honestly just imagine walking away from it all. Like, I can picture it so clearly in my head. Closing up shop with a CLOSED sign and all. No more worrying about keeping up with a blog or the blogosphere. No more worrying about keeping up with social media (which sometimes makes me actually feel decidedly less connected than it used to). No more putting myself out there for the internet. No extra responsibilities. No never-ending blog to-do list. I could find a less time consuming hobby even! I could have more time to Be Productive without Twitter or bookstagram. I could go on with all the things I wouldn’t “need” to do anymore. Ah, sweet freedom. Right? ….Right?
And then the next second I’m like, “WHAT NO?” “I LOVE BLOGGING, EVEN THE BLAH THINGS, I AM BEING SILLY.”
…Here’s the thing: I have always loved writing. I love working through things when I write. I love the feeling I get when I let my caged thoughts out to roam. It’s been freeing and I love being able to chronicle my life through the ups and the downs and the things I learn and the things I’m still learning. It’s been a lifeline for me.”
I’ve never been all that fond of free-writing–for me, stream-of-consciousness has a way of shifting into self-consciousness all too easily. But if it’s your thing, have you tried The Most Dangerous Writing App? (I did not use it to write this post, by the way. This is only pretending to be stream-of-consciousness.)
“Good thing I didn’t assume the worst when I noticed that this friend was no longer among my facebook contacts.
“Good thing I didn’t think that this person unfriended me, and then went to the trouble of hiding their profile from me.
“Good thing I didn’t freak out about why this long-time friend would feel the need to go to these lengths to avoid me.
“Good thing I didn’t ruminate on it all day.
Good thing I didn’t do any of those things.”
From “Unfriended: A Cautionary Tale”–or “Maybe it’s not you. Maybe it really is Facebook”
Speaking of anniversaries and happy places, Paul and I have decided we’re going back to this one in October to celebrate our tenth wedding anniversary. Today, we’re going to my nephew’s sixteenth-birthday party. Where are you going this weekend?