Such feels. It's been a supremely long time since last I wrote, but I've been dealing with some real shit lately and often this medium has proven real helpful and therapeutic for me. Before I begin though, I want to emphasize that I use spaces like this (and telephone calls to my mother) to work through my shit and maybe complain a bit and just word-vomit my anxieties, but in reality, I'm doing mostly really awesome and life is so lovely and the sky is magical and the humans I interact with are mostly beautiful souls and the things I am learning and talking about are SO interesting and important and invigorating. Also, I just was struck as I was writing this essay I have due tomorrow at how well I'm doing even if I have a mini existential crisis over every assignment. I have turned in about 12 writing assignments so far and of the ones I have gotten back, I've gotten really good marks (often better than I was expecting). That's a big deal for a high school dropout. I was pretty worried coming in even though I was doing great before I left and [my mom says] I'm a great writer. But I'm doing it! I'm pushing through!
So I'm trying to decide the best way to begin what I want to say. I think I'll start with the Queer Leadership Retreat I went to with the LGBTQ Student Center a few weekends ago. I got into this program called First Year Queers and Allies and we went with the other club leaders and staff of the center to a YMCA camp in Huguenot, NY and it was magical and educative and fun and real and heavy and deep. But anyway, on the last day, there was a workshop called Self-Care is Not Selfish, which is something I've been thinking a lot about and it hit home for me, except for that it left me with this big fat question (that I've always been obsessed with, but now I had better words to describe it). Basically, I have a REALLY hard time in certain moments deciding which course of actions are actually self-care. For example, when I'm spazzing out about my heavy workload and not getting anything done because of stress/procrastination, is it better self-care to push through and get it done, so I can relax later, or is it better to unplug and hang out with a friend or catch up on a TV show? Both can be true in different moments (or simultaneously, yay) and it's so exhausting/overwhelming to juggle that.
Enjoy this rainbow Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, yay queers! We talked a lot about how it's NOT a jenga game, and us college students often forget/ignore that fact, and are like, meh I don't need sleep today, that's fine, etc, but NAH it's all hella important!
So that's pretty much where I'm at right now. Trying to figure that shit out and just feeling stuck/overwhelmed/exhausted/lost. Also, contributing factors: lack of sleep (EVEN THOUGH I'M TRYING, I'M NOT EVEN A PARTY ANIMAL, IT'S JUST HARD), not so hot diet (ALSO TRYING, still off desserts which is awesome, but definitely not making optimal food choices), lack of exercise (NOT EVEN TRYING, besides like, walking everywhere and taking stairs often. Funny story: yesterday I finally decided to go to the gym for some o' dem sweet sweet endorphins and LOL it was closed when I got there and I cried [lol yesterday was rough]), and here's a big one that I kind of ignore, but my mom points out often: HEAVY DUTY FEELS WORKLOAD. All of my classes are pretty hardcore, in terms of the big fucking life questions about race, gender, sex, sexuality, class, globalisation, etc etc etc. Everything I talk about in ALL my classes is SO interesting and intersectional but SO not easy. Dealing with our fucked up society and questioning the potentially racist/sexist/classist/ableist/any-ist things I and others might say or do takes a psychological toll, no matter how strong and enlightened I believe myself to be. And like, I've been having a really hard time focusing on my readings lately, but I think it has a teeny bit to do with how heavy and life-pondering they all are. Like right now I have two books to read for tomorrow (lol that's something I'll get to in a second) and one's about sex work in Mumbai and all the intricacies and difficulties of that business and the language we use around that and the other one is called Moral Property of Women: A History of Birth Control Politics in America. Oof. Big stuff, INTERESTING STUFF, hard stuff.
Which brings me to another frustrating point: UGH THE READING! There's just entirely too much too fast. It's making me stressed and depressed. All of it is so interesting and relevant and important and I want to spend time devouring it all, but there's just not enough time and we're moving too fast and I think I've actually finished maybe three of the millions of full length books we've been assigned. Not to mention the pages and pages and pages of excerpts and handouts for another class. I DON'T WANT TO BE THIS PERSON. The stereotypical student type who complains about all the work and is like "ughhhhhhfhjgkdg i have to read this fucking thing and i'm so annoyed about it" but I AM starting to resent the readings, and I hate that, but I just can't handle this many things. Or rather, I can, and that's by not doing most of it and doing totally fine in discussions and homework assignments. But I WANT to actually read this stuff! Ugh, it makes me really mad/sad.
I've been particularly fucked up the past week. Just lack of motivation and paralyzing procrastination that still feels shitty. And like, yesterday, it was more of a depressed vibe than stressed out anxiety which sucked. In my head, it's really all fine and good and I'm looking ahead at being to look back and being like aw man what good times of growing and struggle and darkness that led to the magic of now, but it's still shitty in the moment. But today, I had a nice salad for lunch and I think I will try to get to the gym today (if I chip away at the work a little first) and it's so nice and crisp out and I'm trying to be okay. :)
In other news, people are lovely and awesome and I just want to hug everyone all the time. (Mostly everyone, there are definitely some ughhhhhh people). Things are moving along great socially, I just wish there were more snugs in my life. Snuggles are my life force, but I'm so bad at initiating them when the door hasn't yet been opened. But I'm working on it, and I'm doing pretty good for now. Time is my friend in this, I need to just let it happen. Other good things: actually doing some poetry! I can tell it's an awesome medium for me, and I still have plenty of walls to break down in order to really go there, but I've been scoping out the walls and poking and prodding, and I think I can get there soon enough, and be cool just letting it take the time and course it needs.
So anyway, that felt good to write (even though it meant ignoring my other work for too long) and maybe I'll actually start writing more! Here's to that! And feels! And #college! And surviving! And thriving! I actually finally slept about 11 hours last night, thank you NyQuil. Happy sunday, y'all!