Hi there, or maybe “high there”? I dunno. I’m on a plane, I was trying something. Back off, let me have my process, punk.
I’m en route (getting French already) to Montreal, the city of bread. Friends and I are having a post New Years NYE weekend away. Some of our good pals moved there at the end of 2018 and suggested we all make our way there for an extra soiree. I’m going to devour impressive quantities of baking, beer and coffee. One of our friends is a cocktail expert and she’s got some fancy plans on the go. It’s gonna be a fantastic time with some of my favourite people. It seems like a great antidote to the past few days.
Birthdays fuck me up. They never used to, but the older I’ve gotten the worse they’ve been. It’s not that I have any real aversion to aging, I don’t. Aside from my body steadily decaying, I’ve generally ripened with age. It’s more that each year it gives me pause to reflect on what I’ve done since the last annual vantage point. The longer I’ve lived, the further apart real accomplishments have been. 2018 was thoroughly not great for me. Way back in my 2018 birthday, I was all kinds of depressed. I was fighting my body, trying keto and hating it. I got into all kinds of mental tussles with myself over food, consumption, body issues and all that fun stuff. Even moreso, I felt stuck in my job. I’d been doing the same thing for the past three years. I felt uninspired, unchallenged and unmotivated. Life had plateaued at a peak that was far lower than my minimum level of happiness. I don’t say it lightly or with a lack of gravity when I mention that my prevailing thought was “if I’m still here in a year’s time, I’m going to want to die.” Turns out that a year later, I’m still in the same place. I’ve been putting a lot of effort into trying to gain momentum and it’s basically all been channelled into treading water. I’m tired and it’s gotten to the point where I’d mostly rather sink.
So I spent the majority of yesterday wanting to die. I don’t mean some melodramatic “oh woe is me, I just feel sad” I mean very real, dispassionate “I want to be dead. I want to no longer exist. I’m wasting my life doing nothing with real meaning. I’m not creating anything of value, I’m not finding any larger purpose or passion. I’ve wasted the past few years getting nowhere, and that’s not likely to change any time soon.” Everything I experienced just reiterated these ideas. I knew that even if I pulled myself out of it, I’d end up right back there again. That I was just going to keep up this cycle of being so thoroughly miserable I wanted to just not “be” instead. That yeah, I do make other people happy, but if I’m not making myself happy, what’s the point? I’m not living for others and I don’t owe them anything, let alone continuing to exist. So I stewed in that all day, at the job I hate, doing extra work so others wouldn’t have to cover for me while I was on holiday. Then I went home, got stoned, my mood shifted, I played Magic and had some great farewell sex. This morning I feel far fewer of those feelings that were so pervasive yesterday.
Two things are not gonna happen here. Firstly, I’m not going to kill myself. I’m too lazy and smart to do something that stupid. If I basically never do anal beause I’m too lazy to thoroughly douche, I’m not gonna put the effort into figuring out a way to kill myself that minimises pain, is quick and efficient, and creates the least amount of mess for anyone to clean up after. My standards are way too high to settle for something half-arsed and low concept. It’s just not gonna happen. Even in my darkest passages, I know that if I keep going, things will eventually level out. Secondly, I’m not gonna turn this into some kind of “it’s always darkest before the dawn” bullshit. Realistically, things are probably gonna continue to be low key shit for a while. Given my current track record, likely years. This isn’t the only time I’m going to sincerely wish for death. It’s also far from the only time I’ve done so in my life. Whether I like it or not, I’m gonna be around for a while. At times that’ll be excellent, and at other times breathing will feel like a real chore. Perhaps I’ll be able to distract myself enough that I’ll forget about it, then I’ll circle back and get dumped right back into these feelings. That’s life for me, and that’s okay. Pretending there’s no problem is a lot worse than recognising and accepting it. It’s part of me, and if I’m to truly love myself, I think I need to offer compassion to my darker sides too. I think there’s maturity in that.
See y’all tomorrow, and the next day, and so on. Even when I don’t want to, I’ll still be here.