31) inner celebrations

My December to Remember: Day 31

I don’t think I’ve made it clear just how scared I am to be alone outside in this city. At least at night. And catching a cab at 2:50AM to go to work doesn’t count. Especially now that I’ve been barred from the building. But I don’t feel safe here. I did, but not anymore. It’s a terrible feeling. I used to love being in this city at night. It was always alive, no matter what time it was. And I wasn’t worried about anything that may be lurking in the shadows.

I am now. And I fear that won’t change anytime soon.

Most people will tell me to just move. “Get out of cities” seems to be the rallying chant for anyone who doesn’t live here. But this is where my home is right now. It does me no good to just pack up and go at the moment. Unless you want to pay for any and all closing costs the sale my apartment incurs. No, for now, I’m fine. All I’m going to do is stay home until further notice. I can’t even go into my grocery store anymore because everyone is being strictly adherent to this unjust mask mandate. I can’t comply, so therefore I won’t. I can get everything I need delivered right to my door.

This won’t last forever. I really do think they’re trying to break everyone’s spirit, especially those who did not play along and get a shot. But I don’t think they took into account that introverts exist. I haven’t gone stir-crazy this whole time. I’m just naturally crazy. But it never bothered me sitting at home all the time. I used to think I was missing out on what’s going on out there, or that I wasn’t taking advantage of living here. I don’t think that anymore. Now, I think people are missing out on what I’m cultivating in here.

2022 stands to be a good year for all of us. We have every opportunity to do some good here and actually transition into a new life. We don’t have to keep doing things that aren’t working anymore. We can make changes and hone our powers. I bought a standing desk today because I have no idea how long I’ll be working from home. I see it as a gamechanger. I don’t need anyone and no one needs me.

I’ve written something down every day for thirty-one days, and I intend on keeping up with regular entries here. I feel like I’m working toward something all the time. And maybe I don’t need to “get out there” and feel the grind of life right now. Maybe all I need is to stay right here until everyone else catches up. I only need to stay in my cocoon for a little longer. The time for celebration is here.

30) fight and flight

My December to Remember: Day 30

The crazier it gets out there, the more I see things working out in the end. And these really are the end times. This part of the year always seems to zoom by. First we eat the turkey, then we light the trees. And after we watch the ball drop, it all begins anew. A slow crawl to this time of the year where we all say “I can’t believe it’s almost over!” Over and over and over again.

Just because the year changes doesn’t mean we have to. I haven’t changed one bit. Have you? I feel exactly the same. I’m not sure why you don’t, honestly. We all became just exactly who we are through this whole thing. It’s time to accept that for ourselves first before we expect everyone else around us to bend to our whims. And while we’re at it, maybe we don’t try to force people into thinking like us anyway. That never ends well now does it?

I never thought I was trying to change anyone. All I wanted was for them to at least see it my way. Just acknowledge it. You don’t have to go along with it if you don’t want to. I wouldn’t force that. But maybe this isn’t how I’ve always been perceived. Maybe someone out there thought he was being ordered to feel by me. And if someone isn’t ready to feel that, I absolutely cannot make them. So I gave up. I stopped trying. I did all that I could, and now look where it’s gotten me. I’m at the point where I would absolutely kill to have someone in my life who would straight up force me to get my fat ass off the couch and begin exercising again. Sometimes we need that little punch in the ass to get us going. I’m not willing to fight that fight myself and have made peace with that.

But maybe I shouldn’t. Maybe I should want better for myself. It’s actually getting to be painful sitting for long periods of time, while my body just gets bouncier and bouncier. It’s not that I am physically unable to work out, I was lifting weights not more than a week ago. But I’ve just stopped again, and see no reason to continue. I’ve never loved exercising, anyway. What’s the use of trying to change my ways now? They’re just going to hole me up in my home until they deem it safe to come out again. Who am I trying to impress over here?

I give up. I don’t feel like fighting anymore. I’m tired of searching for a reason to change my ways right now. I’m going to let it come to me. I’m going to be conscious of what I’m doing to myself, and I’ll always allow myself to try again tomorrow. I’m ambling about in the dark, fumbling for the light switch. One day, I’ll hit it. And then it’ll be on. And how quickly we’ll see what’s been in front of us this entire time.

29) word value appreciating

My December to Remember: Day 29

I’m starting to hear things I’ve been saying for some time now. But they’re all coming from other people and they’re getting all the credit for it. This has been a staple for me for some time: I say a thing, people call me crazy, then we all wait a bit and what I said resurfaces out of someone else’s mouth. And they get the pats on the head while I sit here thinking, “Uh, yeah, I already knew that.” It’s so stupid to think about. It’s stupid to even write it all down. But it’s so real to me. And for a while there, I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to let it all go.

There’s a lingering scent of resentment emanating off me at all times. I assume. Just finishing up month three of not being able to smell anything. But I do feel I’m holding onto a bit of not-so-righteous indignation. It’s like I feel slighted by everyone and everything around me, like it was all created to annoy me and only me. Everything that occurs as happenstance is a direct result of someone, somewhere out there not wishing for good things for me. And it turns me bitter and untoward toward everyone who comes my way.

It’s all so tiresome. I’ve grown so weary of holding onto this resentment that I might just learn to let it all go. Who cares if someone says the same thing I’ve been saying this whole time? At least it’s getting out there. That thing I said wasn’t the banger vaulting me to my version of mass recognition. Even if I tell someone I said it first, I have no receipts, unless I want to go through four years of chicken scratch notes with no discernible order to them.

No, for now, I’m just going to keep watching things go my way. If the world is repeating what I’ve been saying, there’s an echo in here that will one day bounce back to me. I can’t wind up with the short end of the stick my whole life, can I?

28) lighter rail

My December to Remember: Day 28

Today was a better day than yesterday. That’s because I wanted to have a good day. I’ve been nothing but a bundle of frustration and woe that I just wanted to make sure things would be better for myself. I don’t have time to transport the entirety of the world’s problems on my shoulders. Please forgive me. I had no idea you had asked all this of me.

I’m just trying to find the good in all this madness. I don’t even feel angry anymore. It’s strange how it seemingly changed overnight, but perhaps it was just building to this all along. I felt proud of the work I did today, and I was happy to keep producing and shoveling coal long after being officially off the clock. Taking pride in things, no matter how small or how much they’re not your exact passion, can really help vault you to the next place you want to be.

It’s as though whatever happens next is the exact piece of track needed to push my train full steam ahead. I’m not slowing down. Each and every step is just as important as the last, and it’s charting a course I know will come to a fruitful end.

I’ve just not yet been informed of my destination. And I haven’t decided if I want to see a good ending or a bad one. But I think if I keep making the conscious choice to turn things around, there’s no way this ends in a wreck. I’ve been working on the railroad for far too long to let it all go to waste now. No more delaying the departure. We’re all finally on time.

27) the solo belief

My December to Remember: Day 27

Having a little trouble believing in things lately. I’m not even sure I know what I want to happen at this point. But I do know that if it doesn’t go my way, I get to play the victim for at least a little while longer. And that’s what’s starting to frighten me.

All I wanted to do was complain today. Today is the first day I’m back to working remote, when I have no other reason to other than an outgoing mayor wanted to shove just one more middle finger up this city’s ass before he goes. Add that to having no one to hang with, nowhere to go if I did, and absolutely no sign of my sense of smell. It sucks. This is possibly the weirdest time I’ve lived through in my entire lifetime. Yes, I know everyone is going through it at any given moment, but here on my blog, we talk my probs. I need the space to talk about that. Because the moment I open my mouth to certain people, all the focus is immediately taken off of me. No one acknowledges that I just said a thing. That I felt a feel. It’s like I may as well not have said anything. And I sometimes don’t believe I’ll ever get to actually say my piece. Or that I’ll just completely flub my lines when the time actually comes to speak up.

I don’t want it to feel good to be a complainer. No one wants to hear that. But I’m starting to believe I know of no other way to do things. Or that maybe what I’m doing isn’t even classified as complaining. It’s just how it is right now. Maybe part of me doesn’t believe things will get better. Maybe I have no faith in anything good happening to me, period.

I’m not sure what it is, but at least I can trust in the inevitability of something happening here. We won’t see it until it does. And I’d rather be at least as close to aware of what it could be as possible. It’s not my way or the highway at that point. Sometimes it’s just His way or bust.

26) through the broken looking glass

My December to Remember: Day 26

I have no idea what good anything I’m doing is. I have no idea what people think of me. I have no idea just what people expect from me, and I can’t fathom what else I could possibly do about it.

It’s the quiet time. Not a whole lot is going on, even though literally everything on earth is going on right now. The world never stops turning. The news never stops churning. And the richest among us never stop earning. We’re all on a weird rotation to where some of us have just found comfort in their compliance, or revolution in their rebellion. Whatever the case may be, there’s something ahead that’s we’re all going to break through, and I hope on the other side of it, we finally get what we deserve.

My dad always talks about karma. I don’t know if mine is bad, or the greatest allotted of all time. It’s hard to know. There’s highs and lows and ups and downs and it’s all flying at me at all times. And right now, I’m having a lot of trouble finding a different way to describe myself other than just feeling broken over it all.

Something forever changed for me in the back half of this year. At first, when it happened, it felt like it broke me. Shattered me. Brought me to a place I could never recover from. I was able to pick up the pieces, I just haven’t found it in me to start again yet. I’m instead left holding the shards, wondering if they’re even worth reassembling at this point. But there’s still a part of me that isn’t ready to let go. They’ve hurt me, but I was willing to cut my finger over and over again.

I wonder how much longer this can last. I realize I’m liking who I am more and more, despite all the cuts and bruises I’ve endured along the way. Perhaps whatever mirror I was gazing into is better left unassembled. I can find a new one, one where the reflection will see me happy rather than endlessly confused. Now, I just have to believe it for myself. And that’s proving to be the hardest crack of them all to fill.

25) peace on my inner earth

My December to Remember: Day 25

All I wanted was for everyone to have a Merry Christmas. And that’s exactly what it feels like everyone got. Including yours truly. All I’ve ever hoped was for everyone to get exactly what they wanted, regardless of whether or not this was a holiday. Not everything coming our way can be a happy event, but as long as peace is discovered somewhere, that’s all that really matters.

I’ve been asking for peace lately. Because there’s still a lot of hurt and anger I’m feeling. I’m coming to terms with the idea that someone, somewhere, has found that peace without me. That everything I once built up in my head will serve as nothing more than a memory for an existence that never was. I don’t know if I’m fine with it yet, but I know that I will be. I have to be. There is no choice here. I made mine. Someone else did too.

I look forward to the lifetime of just being me. Being with me. Being comfortable with me. With that on my side, I cannot lose. I’ll discover all the tranquility one needs in a lifetime. Whoever wants to come on this journey with me is more than welcome to. Because this is it. My closing of the book and willingness to write a new one. I still have no choice in this deed I’ve been tasked with, but I couldn’t be happier to begin it. I don’t know what the future holds for any of us, but finding that spot of inner solitude can only assist you in weathering what is to come.

24) perchance to dream

My December to Remember: Day 24

I don’t dream anymore. It’s been about a month since I’ve had one. It’s as if they all just fell out of my head. Or I’ve forgotten how. Once in a while, I’ll remember a scene or two, but they’re usually gone by the time my eyes open.

I’ve always been interested in dreams. I used to keep a dream journal as a kid. I was just looking for some kind of meaning to all it, and discover what my subconscious was all trying to tell me. Most of the time it was just reflections of my day, but as I got older, it felt like there was more meaning to them, especially when it felt like I was getting visited in my sleep. People who weren’t currently in my life would drop in occasionally to deliver a message that we’d see each other again. It would help me stop worrying so much about if things really would pan out as they should. I just always wanted them to go my way. But now, I’m starting to think that “my way” was to actually push it away from me instead.

I wonder why it is I don’t believe good things are in my future. It’s like I want everyone else to have good experiences but I don’t care if they come my way. Just as long as everyone else is happy. I don’t need anything, I’ll be fine. I sort of resigned this as my fate, but maybe it doesn’t have to be. The absence of dreams lately is telling me I’m doing something to myself to cause this. I’m keeping something away from me and would rather sink into the nothingness instead of changing it.

There’s no use in me staying asleep on my own life. It’s just felt impossible to get going. I feel very confined and solitary as of late. Like I don’t deserve to enjoy things just like everyone else. Who cares if I don’t have a dream at the moment? Well, I don’t want to feel that anymore. I don’t know where all this self-deprecation comes from, but I think it’s starting to take its toll when I turn out the light. It’s about time I flip the switch elsewhere. Half this battle in life is mental. What good is it if I’m my own worst enemy half the time?

I know what I have to do. I know what I want to do. I just wonder if I’ll ever be joined on my wavelength again. To fall in the deepest state of sleep with me one day. A girl can dream, I guess. Even if she can’t right now.

23) connecting and controlling the content

My December to Remember: Day 23

It’s not someone else controlling “the simulation we live in.” We do that ourselves. We’ve been in control this whole time. That’s why everything is so cringey. It’s our collective consciousness at work. You see those singin’ and dancin’ nurses in the East Room today? On Festivus of all holidays? Talk about airing of grievances. This is the perfect day to do it.

Nah, never mind. Some things are better left unsaid. I’m sure I could do something like make a TikTok of my reaction to the ultra-cringe levels of two unmasked soccer moms belting out their Broadway production, while a bunch of nurses uncomfortably sway behind them. Yeah. Just me watching the video and emphasizing my expressions as I give a genuine reaction. There’s a market for it. Maybe I’ll go viral. It might even garner hundreds of thousands of views if I’m lucky. A site like TikTok allows for that. These videos need to get a point across in less than sixty seconds. It’s been an interesting growth story to watch. But the days of creation are long past me at this point.

Cloudflare says TikTok was the most visited site on the internet in 2021. It got more clicks than Google, and boasts over a billion active users in a month. So obviously people get a kick out of it. It’s continued what its predecessor Vine began, by offering microdose videos that appeal to our ever-shortening attention spans. I’m really not knocking this when I say this form of content creation is past me. I just can’t get there. I don’t get it. It would be incredibly difficult for me to partake in. But I can observe what’s really going on here.

For the most part, our internet media is consumed like this. Short bursts of content that allow us to take whatever context out of it. We arrive in the middle of things a lot of the time. The video begins, but we don’t see the exact beginning of it all. You don’t get to see the thought process that leads up to someone’s rant, a confrontation, the state of mind of someone’s TikTok dance. And this isn’t a complaint. I know it’s impossible and I’m not clamoring to see that anyway. I just find it interesting how this style of content has shaped an entire generation.

We want to do things for clout. For attention. To get a point across. That’s nothing new. I just think the content we’re creating is contributing to all the other weird things we’ve been seeing lately. In this “simulation” as some say. We’re pushing the limits of human interaction and now we’re just seeing the effects. Maybe our responses shouldn’t be to point out the cringe anymore. Maybe it’s not about dunking on things or making fun of them in a show of oneupsmanship. Maybe it’s about making real life happen, whether you record it or not.

I don’t like thinking this is a “simulation” because that implies someone else is at the controls. I control my own content. I control what I put out. And no one is sponsoring me to do it. It’s not always the easiest thing to remember the internet isn’t real life, but sometimes it help lays out the blueprint for what we want to see. I think I’m going to see less cringe and wish for more connections. I feel so far apart from everyone, so detached and gone from sight that I can create whatever I want. I’ll ease up on the horrors and hope for something more. And when it happens, it won’t be something you first see on an internet video.

22) we must go back

My December to Remember: Day 22

If all this means that I can’t participate in your little society, then fine. Shun me. That’s what this is starting to feel like. Ostracization. I walked home today and just saw sign after sign on each New York City business: present your pass in order to eat at this establishment. Partake, whatever. You can’t come in unless you show that pass. I thought some people would be cool about it and say, “yeah, we know it’s BS too,” and let me on in. That’s not so. I’ve been in two separate places that asked for my pass. I held up my phone and winked. “It’s right here,” I said. No one understood. They were puzzled as to why I wasn’t showing them the pass. I had to finally ask, am I not allowed in if I don’t show it? They told me yes, so I was on my way. Or I ate outside instead. Or I got lucky and stayed in a little speakeasy until closing time. I eventually find what I want, I guess.

It’s fine. No, honestly. It’s annoying, and I’m still that ranting lady on the street, but it’s fine. I know these past few entries have turned into a diary of sorts, but there’s a lot to document, quote, “in the middle of a pandemic.” It’s the one thing I really want to talk about. Because they’re about to hole me back up in my abode until further notice, and no one’s stopped to ask me how I feel about that. We’re going back to a time where we have to hunker down and wait it out, just like did at the beginning of this mess. But that was the right thing to do at the time. We didn’t know what had breached our shores, but we were prepared to fight it. March 2020 mindset. All in this together. I get it. We all did our part to make sure we were safe.

Now? I can’t go into my office because I didn’t get a medical procedure that’s just making everyone sicker. Only for a time, though. It is flu season after all.

I just wish I could get past all the “you must” talk about it. The president just told Americans it’s practically their patriotic duty to get a shot. Funny that I thought part of that duty was to stand up to unjust laws. Like covering my perfectly healthy face with a piece of cloth because a governor who was not elected says anyone ages two and up have to have one on in an indoor setting. How do you expect me to stand behind anything that advocates cruelty to children?

I know part of me is ostracizing myself when I espouse views in this manner. I wish I wasn’t, but I don’t have a whole lot of social outlets these days. I’m just at home, writing, working out, eating, and getting baked. It’d be fun to be at a health club and swim a few laps a day, or get a monthly pass to the Met and just walk around for a few hours. But no. Off limits for only a thousand more years. So what else can I do? Still won’t get it. At least right now. Maybe when I’m in my seventies and not in the greatest health, I’ll choose to get the new yearly flu shot. That seems like a no-brainer to me. But right now, in my mid-thirties, I have no intention of getting one. Simple as that.

Except it’s not simple. It’s completely taken over the entire American psyche. The White House can’t go one discussion without bringing up vaccines, or saying there’s a big problem because of no testing kits, or “the unvaccinated” are a thing to be feared while “the vaccinated” are safe but don’t mind that they’re also getting sick with the new variant even though we keep trying to blame it on the ones who didn’t take the same medicine they did, even though they’ve all been gathering together without us for a few months… I mean, phew. I’m sorry. It’s just so maddening sometimes. It seems so crystal clear to me that the simple solution is to just stop everything that we’re doing and let the chaos work its way back to flat ground.

But that can’t happen. Because no one’s asked me what I think about all this. They all won’t get to hear my great ideas. I’m the one who has to stay home. I’m the one who has something wrong with her. I’m the one who doesn’t get an extra bonus for uploading her vax-status. And so? What else can I do about it? Where else can this energy go? I try not to let it out at work. At least when no one is around. I don’t trauma dump my opinions onto people, and I don’t tell anyone outside of the show what to do. I just want to work with these people, get to know them, have a good time, and then go home.

And you know something? I still got narced on. Like I knew one day someone would. I was warned people are scared shitless, and I guess I manifested it. On Christmas week, no less. I was told my simple, white silk scarf could no longer serve as a proper face covering. I needed “an official mask” now. Because someone saw me and told me “You need a mask,” as it’s against the rules to be maskless in the control room. It infuriated me. I sat silent for minutes, maybe longer when I received, in writing, that I needed to put a proper mask on. I just felt so broken. So tired. So unbelievably done with all this.

Why, why, why can’t people just let some things slide? You can’t just be cool for a few more days and let me wear my pretty scarf? I was covering my face. Even so, I’m not sick, I’m not worried about getting sick, and I’m not going to apologize for that. Going into work is about the only social activity I get to do these days, and they’re taking that away from me. And then when I do talk about things like this, I get called selfish. I just can’t win. I’m a professional loser. It’s a never-ending cycle where I feel like I’m just chewing on my toes over and over again until one day I gnaw away so much that I implode in on myself like a dying star.

We’ve been caught in the loop of “staying safe.” I want everyone to feel safe, but I cannot abide by these safety rules it when it comes at another person’s expense. Especially if it’s mine, because, well, self-preservation. If this is “selfish,” then so be it. Because it is never my intention to put anyone else at risk. I just want people to figure out how not to be afraid of living again. And when reasoning doesn’t help or the conversation never begins, sometimes becoming a little wrench in the machinery is the only tactic one has left.

One thing I know won’t get us there is repeating the same cycle that caused so much destruction in the first place. If something isn’t working, we never admit fault. We just try it again until we can fudge the numbers enough to make it look like it was a success. Shutting back down, going into panic mode, and letting all the nefarious ones feed on your fear is going to make it that much harder to crawl back out of this toxic cycle and begin to get back to ‘normal.’

We’re all so close. We just have to stop wishing for bad outcomes for people. How another person lives their life has no bearing on yours whatsoever. We have “rules” in place, but try and understand why someone would willingly ‘break’ it. Things will be a lot better if we worked to understand one another. Maybe spending a bit more time with myself at home will be the best thing for me. It’s not like I’ve lost myself or don’t know who I am. There’s some other housekeeping that needs to be done to get me to the next level. No more crazy ranting lady on the street. Perhaps these entries will find direction once again. In the meantime, I thank you for listening. I’m not sure what people are expecting from me in these entries, but at least they’re going out. Maybe we all need a little disappearing in on oneself from time to time. Perhaps something new will emerge from the nothingness of our vanishing. We’re kind of getting a chance to start over again. At least, that’s how it is in the Northeastern United States.