Ever since dropping out of my teacher certification program, I’ve been feeling somewhat depressed. I’m probably always suffering from some kind of low-level depression, but now I’m starting to develop a sense of hopelessness. I’m an intense person, and unless I have some future goal to work towards and absorb my attention and energy, I tend to become self-absorbed, negative and obsessive about all the wrong kinds of things.
Today I thought I was having a major depressive episode because all I wanted to do was curl up under the covers and die. There is too much of the Calvinist in me, though, to let myself do that, so instead I forced myself to sit at my computer, ostensibly to answer “massage emails”. What I actually ended up doing was looking at pointless stuff on the internet. Today I learned all about male-to-female gender reassignment surgery. Damn! Those man-made vaginas look good! Better than mine!
I wonder how many lives Wikipedia and the google search button have ruined…
My period started a couple of hours ago, so I can probably just put today’s extra mood of depression down to PMS. Over the last year, I’ve definitely noticed that my mood is much darker the day my period starts. This is a strange occurrence for me, as I’ve nearly always had trouble-free periods. Barely a cramp, or even the tiniest of mood swings.
Financially, things are also a mess for me, and I don’t quite know how to get myself out of the black hole of debt and bills I find myself in. Things are not at a critical stage, but I am living a pretty hand-to-mouth existence, and it’s very, very tiring. I badly need new clothes, so much so that I can’t even bear to go out anymore because I know I don’t look as well put together as I could. I suppose stuff like that doesn’t really matter…but it does. Hell, even Otis Redding knew that: “Oh, she may be weary/Young girls they do get weary/Wearing that same old shaggy dress”
As for “trying a little tenderness”, Midwestern Man hasn’t been very good at that lately. I don’t really blame him, though. I just don’t have much to give right now, and I know he feels neglected. Like most men, he’s not very good at expressing his frustration and feelings of neglect, so they just come out in anger instead. He’s also a very angry, argumentative drunk (kind of worrying actually…his biological father was/probably still is an alcoholic) who causes small disagreements to escalate into horrific fights. I just wanted to hang out on Saturday night and watch “Deadwood” on TV, but instead we got into an argument, which involved him calling me “a whore”; me finally losing it and throwing a glass of wine in his face; him throwing a glass of wine in my face and, then, finally, as the dénouement, me lobbing the empty wine bottle at him as he fled into the bathroom. Luckily it missed, but I now have a huge hole in my bedroom door. OK, so I never said I was a great drunk…but, in my defence, I did try to avoid arguing until he called me a whore…
That night, and for most of the next morning, I was dead set on getting a divorce, but then I called him, and asked him to come round for cuddles…and all was good again.
Unfortunately, I misunderestimated the emotional effect our huge fight had had on me. When I went to my first ever book group yesterday afternoon, I sat down with my cup of coffee in the circle of readers and my hands couldn’t stop shaking, probably from sheer emotional exhaustion. My hands were shaking so much that I spilled the coffee all over the place, which made me flustered, which made my hands shake more, which made me spill more coffee, which made me flustered and made my hands shake more etc etc…I was also sweating like a pig because I’d cycled there, in the heat. I also felt weak and completley on edge, and I must have looked as pale as a ghost. I felt like I was about to have a nervous breakdown, and I was stuttering.
All of this would have been OK if it hadn’t been an African-American Literature bookgroup, with only one white member (me!). I knew I was probably going to be the only white person there, and that didn’t bother me, but the other members must have thought I was having some kind of whitey meltdown. It’s ironic because I was actually pleased that there probably wouldn’t be any white Americans because the ones in this town are often entitled, spoiled fucks, and I can’t relate to them. A case in point: why am I the only white person in the group?! It clearly says on the public website that the group is open to everybody. Surely I can’t be the only white person in the town interested in African-American literature?
In the end, everything was fine…everybody was really welcoming to me, and the leader of the group said she really enjoyed my input. I might also ask the woman from Montréal to accompany me next month, as her parents are from Trinidad, and there was a Trinidadian at the group. I’m sure they’d like to meet each other, and this way I have a safe, non-desperado, non-stalkery activity to suggest doing together.