Back To It

I biked home through the snowfall yesterday—first of the season—nearly blinding myself with the sharp falling flakes.

I got back to the house, came inside and took a hot shower. The bike doesn’t have fenders, and before it snowed it rained, and everything between my stomach and my ankles was soaked with freezing water.

But it’s the sensation of suddenly coming back to awareness that I want to talk about. In the shower, suddenly feeling like I was back to being aware? That I had biked home, mono-maniacally focused on getting back, with very little attention paid to vehicles, or really anything but the absolute act of pedalling.

It reminds me of disassociation, an awareness less of the things around you and more of the process of being aware.

I remember first experiencing it at UW, waiting by the business school, suddenly being more aware of myself /seeing/ the trees that I was of seeing them. Like I was trapped inside myself, or that everything was unreal, a movie, something not quite there.


Years later, those things are still with me. It’s an unsettling feeling, this very strong sense that nothing is real, or maybe that too much of it is.
In the shower, I also realized that, despite the neurotic insistence that something was wrong with my breathing (my new neurotic focii), it’s just a thought. “There are no tigers.”

And I’ve not yet been bitten by some necrotic or paralytic spider, despite all the little whisperings and festerings in my clothes, or on my feet under the desk.

I’m far more neurotic in these fleeting thoughts than I am in actuality. Even now, writing this, eating an apple, the fleeting thought that my throat is closing up, that the little cough, this one, this time, is the impending end. Anaphylactic shock.

All I want to do are the things I don’t. To always have this sort of confidence, to go back to a time when I felt like things were more possible, simpler, that I was not always in such a dire position.

The constant stress of these years has been a lot. I keep putting off the processing of my assaults, wanting to write something story like for the same cannibalistic audience I always write for.

How to kill the audience in your head?

And, perhaps just as importantly, how to practice the discipline to do the things I only vaguely intimate?

Now that I have a few days off–It is a plan to spend a bit today reviewing a draft paper from work—I want to focus my newfound strength, and my comfort, and leverage it up to “the next level.”

When I am feeling very low, when things are hard, I allow myself to do less, to expect and strive a bit less. But that is no longer where I am at: I am doing well. I am financially secure for the first time in a long time, I enjoy my work, I have a good place to live.

So what am I doing to keep growing–to continue getting better, exponentially because now I have the energy, the means, the time. And the need. There is always the need to keep going, to keep growing, to keep learning.
I have no idea where my appetite(s) come from, but they are a part of me. Some are easier to recognize and deal with than others.

My intellectual omnivorousness is obviously no problem. I have my opinions, my habituated beliefs, those things that I find myself expressing strongly to others. And yet…often I am not sure myself personally whether my expression is “true” or “honest” in the sense that my belief is internally held, or consistent.

But again, that is most likely a feature of my self-critique, and a somewhat hyperactive tendancy to analyze, and re-analyze, and re-re-re-analyze. Always looking for the ways things connect, or comment, or tie the world together.

Vast assemblages of language and time. Flesh and ink.

It’s snowing outside, and for some reason paired with the WMD song, it brings tears to my eyes. Are they happy? I cannot tell. Perhaps they are sad. Perhaps they are relief. Maybe it doesn’t matter.

Light snow. I love it. It is beautiful.

How to allow myself to relax, to create, to actually let go of this hyper-curiosity. It’s paralyzing. You would think that having such a quick reflexive habit would lend itself to critical interpretations, to some great genius or focus of mental powers.

But really all it does is make me tired, and always feeling on edge–that I am not doing what I should be. That I am not where I should be, that I am not doing what others think I should do. That I owe something, anything, my own happiness, to the world in exchange for…

Nothing? Wow, it sounds pathological when I lay it out like that, in such vague and stark terms.

>The sun is now behind the snow cloud fully, and the flatness returns. The snow is beautiful. I am thinking of going downstairs for breakfast and coffee. Or maybe tea?< I'll illustrate what I mean. I have a very hard time working not alone. I always feel like I have to be doing something for the people around me--engaged, trying to respond to them. It's not quite distraction, but more a sense of owing them. Or that, here amongst the hyper-productive, that I am not productive enough, I am not busy enough, I am doing something wrong. Actually, I do know how to parse this mysterious issue: I view everything as normative. Movies, shows, books, other people's opinions and actions and words. I consider everything to be a commentary on "SHOULD," when in reality none of it is. Anything can be normative, but not everything always is. It's the view of a perpetual outsider, of someone studying the world from elsewhere. No particular ties, perhaps.