Friday, January 29, 2010

Sometimes you walk the line

And sometimes it walks you.

I guess this is one of those cases where there's too much to say but not enough to talk about. Classes have been passably interesting, I'm starting to know my way around the area where the DIS classrooms are situated, and things are falling into a routine of sorts. I say routine, but no two days here have been remotely alike. I alternate between going to bed at midnight or 1 and crashing at 7, never really sleeping comfortably for more than 5 hours. I don't really know what that's all about, but it makes for very energetic parts of my day as well as dead tired ones.

In preparation for going out last night, I had a few drinks and promptly fell asleep in my dress shirt and jeans until people coming back in to their rooms woke me up at 4 am. Seven hours of sleep is a relative relief for me, but all things told being up at 4 hasn't been so great. I have been consistently unable to fall back asleep after I wake up, which I suppose is a welcome change to my normal schedule which pretty much precluded the concept of waking in general.

I feel way more upset about missing the festivities of last night than I thought I would. Normally I don't care about that kind of stuff, I have spent plenty of weekends hiding from parties at school, but this whole experience has endured on such a ludicrous time scale that I feel like one night missed is a critical hurdle I will have to step over awkwardly somewhere down the track. This is of course completely false, none of this will matter by the beginning of next week, but it is a stumbling block that I really didn't want to run into at this point. With such a whirlwind of an orientation to this place, I suppose I had to slow down at some point, but it isn't a welcome change of pace to be honest.

I dove into this experience like you would a glacial lake, eyes closed breath held flailing about and gasping -- a modus that is almost completely foreign to me. I'm not sure how long I thought I could stay in there, but it feels from last night and tonight that I have finally got out of the water and shivered for a bit. Thoughts arise that maybe this whole experience is disingenuous to my true character, a young man who doesn't make waves in any direction if he can help it, up or down. The me of the past 5 years treads with only his nose above water, breathing in the real world but never really being there. I just flipped my metaphor in a really problematic way, but I'm pretty tired and I'd prefer if you just overlooked that for now because I don't feel like rewriting it.

I had retreated completely, from fun, from fear, from anger, from sadness as much as I could. But most importantly I shrank from drama, from anxiety, stress, panic, exhilarating risk and that state of sublime catharsis that I don't know the word for. Now I'm on my way back out into the world, but if life is a horse race, this will be (in Deb Talan's words) a Slow Pony Home. So, yesterday I finally caught up with myself. My jokes weren't there, even my way of being tired and sarcastic just failed. And when that happens, the night is just over, so I went to bed. I feel more than just like I left myself out for a night, I feel defeated by an ordinary Friday.

This is a part of my mentality that has to change, the part that winds itself up before every encounter I have with another person. I close the drawbridge to my brain castle, as it were, and there's a funny face painted on the underside of said bridge, now staring out across the moat. Even right now, in my angstiest of angsts, I can't help but find humor in how poorly my literary devices are serving me right now. But there's no denying that I sense something fundamentally off about the way I approach people. It's beyond just being "awkward," a word that applies so universally to every person and situation that it has no empirically understandable boundaries of meaning. The problem here hooks neatly onto my habits of withdrawal, a picture frame of good humor and spontaneous musings to cover over the pitted realness of what I assume to be a stucco wall.

I hope I'm not being too obtuse here, but I hate putting things plainly because writing about my problems online is too much like all of middle school -- I need something here to remind me I'm an adult. The gist of this monologue is that humor, my greatest asset, is also something that I wield wantonly and without regard or regulation. I use it to deflect the things that are painful and genuine, intimate or uncomfortable. There's a measure of me that is terrified of taking things seriously, because serious things have serious consequences, something that I haven't wanted any part of since the 7th grade when I realized that being a class clown couldn't mitigate all of the unsettling and deeply fickle feelings that life can induce.

I have to finish these thoughts later

1 comment:

  1. i think you need to channel some serious chris carrabba and write an emo song. i would listen to it.