This year I watched the State of the Union for the first time. I was actually invested and interested to hear it. I rushed home to make it home in time. I don't really have much to say about it, besides that I thought it was a great speech and Obama is a great speaker and we'll see what actually happens this year. I just felt that this was a cute and fun title to ease myself back into writing. I hype up the act of writing a blog post so much in my head. It feels like it has to be immediately genius and unique and articulate, but it can't automatically be that if I don't put in the work practicing the habit of writing. I have such an arrogant genius complex where I feel like I am obviously the best of the best, the ultimate genius instantly without breaking a sweat. And if that doesn't happen--which is often the case--I feel like the absolute lowest of the low worthless bum. It's a lose-lose situation. If I do prove myself right sometimes, my little demon reminds me that I'm entirely inadequate. And I can't allow myself to not be perfect because my other tricky little voice reminds me that I'm king of the world. That one is particularly pernicious, because it hides under the skin of a positive self-esteem. It's not. My burden to bear always is my tendency for simultaneous extremes. I am all contradictions and no middle ground. In every field. I am learning to a. love it because it gives me such an interesting and complex lens for the world and b. soften it, because it's exhausting (and ultimately a little bit unhealthy, I believe).
Anyway. I don't really have a specific topic in mind for this post, I just kind of want to word vomit where I'm at. Last time I wrote was in the middle of my first semester back in academia. It's now the day that my second semester begins. I feel really good about my decision to come back to school and my decision to try my luck in the big bad city at New York University. It's terrifying, but it feels SO right. I'm fucking HERE! And doing a pretty great job. I can never decide if/how to talk about my grades, because partly: grades are pointless and don't matter, but I'm really proud of how well I'm doing, yet I do NOT want to be an annoying braggart. But it feels okay to be proud that I dived right back into the deep end (with a few sharks to keep me company) after four years and excelled this quickly. ((I currently have a 4.0)) Okay, quick *pat on my back*! Moving on.
I've decided to edit some of my journal entries from the past month or so to give a sense of my mental and emotional state. One of my favorite things to do is word-vomit my feelings into written entries and then prune and shape them into blog posts.
Blargh, I am so mentally/emotionally/physically drained. I'm trying to stay positive and enjoy these last three days, but I'm having a really hard time making myself finish my work. I have three more essays to work on/write. It's not about time; I have plenty of that. It's about being in the right headspace. I still haven't figured out how to get myself into that space proactively, instead of waiting for the last minute always. But the real elephant in the room of my mind is all the racial injustice that's been escalating lately, specifically surrounding the non-indictments in the Michael Brown and Eric Garner cases. I'm trying to sit with my discomfort and piece together my feelings in this time and what I can/want/need to be doing to dismantle all this scary unfair bullshit. Especially in my New York and LA communities as a white middle-class person. I'm having a lot of trouble figuring out the "right" things to say and do. There are so many mixed messages and I totally get all of them. I'm just scared of wading out into the minefield (and that's exactly what I need to do). For example, I've been hearing that white silence is deadly and people in positions of privilege absolutely must step up and that all of the injustices surrounding issues of class, gender, sexuality, ability, etc. are super connected. You can NOT claim to fight for queer justice without including black bodies, for instance. BUT, at the same time, I hear all about (and see) plenty of uncomfortable instances of white people co-opting spaces and griefs that do not and cannot belong to them. It feels icky even/especially as a white person. I haven't figured out how to use my voice of privilege to call out shit and raise the voices of others without trampling and taking up space, but I'm trying. For now, I'm just reading and sharing articles and going to panels and listening to everyone around me, but it doesn't feel like enough. And I want to feel terrified and outraged, and I do, in some ways, but it doesn't really affect me in the way that gives me a right to proclaim my public outrage. I don't need to be scared when I pass a police officer, and yet I do need to be outraged and not let this "story" die out. Another part of me wants to forget sometimes because it's hard and scary and overwhelming. I have the privilege to be ABLE to check out of this conversation when I want to. The color of my skin isn't deciding which battles I fight. I do. Which is precisely why I need to fight. There are so many unreconciled things within--and without--me right now.
Midnight on my last night in NYC. My alarm for the airport goes off in three hours. I still need to finish/write my essays, but it'll all work out. I've identified the question--why do I take pleasure in this procrastination and stress? I haven't yet figured out the answer. I hate logically understanding my issues without actually feeling capable of solving them. I feel like I need to unlock something within myself.
Los Angeles! Oof, it's nice and weird to be home. I just wish I could be at Nichols in the house I grew up in. I think I will mourn that life for many years. At least until I have a place of my own that I can really decorate and feel at peace with. My last few times in LA, I've been at the mercy of others (mostly my parents) by virtue of living with them and depending on them almost entirely to get around. My lease for my car ended a year ago and every time I'm home, it's a bit of a headache to get around Los Angeles carless. I end up being a lot more flexible about my schedule. Sometimes this is a nice thing--it loosens me up and makes me go with the flow. But it also makes me feel like a visitor in my home which is fine in general, but wears on my home-craving soul after a while. On that note, that might be the roughest part of my past few years--the homebase-less-ness. (Quick note: I am super privileged that I have many places to call home and lucky that this is my roughest feeling, I totally recognize that. I'm just speaking for my specific life situation and its ups and downs.)
I'm so beyond exhausted but I just wanted to capture my melancholia right now. UGH. I've been leaning heavily into my introvert side this break and feeling drained and dreading all social interaction, even/especially planning things. I barely feel ANY holiday cheer. I'm just moving around like a zombie.
MEH. I'm feeling funky today. (Definitely has something to do with my period.) I just updated my line-a-day journal and flipped through old entries. I have a lot of funky days. I can never really place myself on the intro-extro scale. Right now I feel very intro and I just want to be with myself (and others virtually) but I also feel this slump is related to a change in my social atmosphere. I got so comfortable and nice with my New York folks and I've been so anti-social and almost abrasive here. I've been pushing away new people and new conversations. I'm not really sure why I'm doing it, besides my current disdain for human interaction. My dad asked why I was acting mildly depressed and I was like cause I'm exhausted and I have my period and I am maybe mildly depressed and he was like WHYYY and what can I do???? I told him it was FINE and there's nothing TO DO. I'm just in a little funk right now. I want to do better for myself internally this year. I've been giving myself a rough time this whole year for pretty much NO reason and it takes more energy to stay this negative than to give myself a fucking break. I know it's all in my head, but I can't unlock it. I'm gonna keep trying though!
Whoa, I just realized I only have 3 days left here. I'm ready to go back. I'm done floating here. Like, I'm feeling good and like I could be ready to live here again, but since I know it's just a trip and I'm living out of a suitcase, I don't/can't get attached too much. UGH, what is this funk?? I feel like I'm just decompressing and I don't mind that, and it's a good process, but sometimes it feels chemical and out of my control. I was texting my friend and we ended up talking about ugh white dudes but also ugh white feminism and just like ugh all the things. It all just makes me so mad and depressed and I know I have the power to change shit or whatever which is awesome and I definitely plan on it, but also it mostly makes me mad that more people don't realize/care. Whenever I complain to my dad about Hollywood representation, he always responds with, "So change it!" Which is great, but also UGH so annoying. It's not all on me! That's not possible/fair/cool. Also I had this train of thought that began with how, at this moment, I don't think I could be attracted romantically to regular ol' cis dudes (which maybe isn't fair, but SO WHAT, life isn't fair) and I think about how I'm definitely still physically attracted to male-bodied folks and maybe regarding men, it's more of a sexual attraction than romantic. But 2 things. 1. I don't even know how I feel about sex/sexual attraction right now. I'm turned on by people, but I don't really wanna do the sexy time things. Whenever I'm with people, I always fixate on the future story I can tell about it instead of being in the moment. I have more to say on this topic, but that's enough for now. 2. There's still this chubby elementary school reject in me that wants to be attractive to dem boyz and feel hot to them and seek approval/reciprocation. Like, I want them to want to bang me, even if I don't want them to bang me. And I see these cute queer young poly relationships that some of my friends have and I want something like that. They make it look so "easy" and I want to be easy too badly and it's not and I guess the reality freaks me out on some level so I sabotage myself for letting that kind of experience in by over-thinking shit and closing myself off. UGH, I don't know. Yay for being 20 and confused! :) Ooh, I just had a perfect midnight thought as I was drifting off to the dream world. Just thinking about the arbitrary-ness of literally everything. Like, there's no point to anything, so we might as well buy into the set-up we currently have and go along with it. That's usually totally fine, but sometimes I'm reminded and it's hard for a little bit. Also just how EVERY tiny thing is some shade of grey and it's exhausting because I can't gather my thoughts into any cohesive argument because I agree/disagree with all sides. Pretty much. Except for some blatant ignorances, like homophobia. Also I was thinking about the root of religious belief and whether scientists have ever studied/hypothesized where belief comes from. I suppose it all depends who you ask, but is it ever genetic/product of nature? Is it always nurture? Or is it just free will seeking out existential comfort. Time for bed!
About to head out for my first class--Written Contemporary French! I have more feelings (always) to share, but hopefully I can be a little more consistent on this blog. Thanks for reading!