Saturday, August 25, 2007

I occasionally wonder what I look like to other people, from the external eye so to speak. I try not to think about this too much. I know that I must look and sound like a total dork. I've seen the videos, and they make me want to hide indoors and never show my face in public again. The disconnect between what I think and the inadequacy of how I'm able to express it in speech (nowhere near as well as I can in writing), the way I feel and the face I present to the world (it seems blank, cold, robotic even when I don't feel that way, or otherwise, caricatured in its extremity), the gap between my inner identity and my external presentation is so wide that I don't feel like I can bridge it.

And I am desperate to share my true self with someone, and to truly know them, but there's this hideous shell around me, and I hate it. I wish I could shed my stuttering, awkward, inept ways like a carapace or an old skin, even if only for a few minutes or days, just long enough to matter, just long enough for someone to see I'm not really this ugly. My heart breaks within these confines, condemned to a solitary existence.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

So I've been reading a little more about dysthymia. Learning the cashiering routine has been a little stressful, and to my extreme chagrin I started crying in front of the customers yesterday (cringe). So today I downed some St John's wort before work, and I felt fine all day. I don't know how long it's going to take before I have medical insurance again, but I think in the meantime, it would be a good idea to adhere strictly to a regimen of St John's wort every day. It makes such a difference, and I sure as hell don't want to start crying in front of people again, ugh!

The thing of it is this: I can hardly remember a time when I haven't felt depressed. If I had to select a time when I felt happy, it would be first or second grade. You can see the difference in my school pictures; I went from this happy little kid to a morose, depressed looking child. Before that, I was undeniably strange, but I was *happy* and strange. This is consistent with the course that dysthymia often takes. It's everything is covered in grey, well, almost everything. When I find something that isn't grey, that I feel strongly about, I get obsessed with it, addicted to the pleasant feeling associated with the activity, object, or person.

And now I wonder, when I feel that way about a person, am I really in love with him/her? Do I love them, or do I love the feelings they evoke in me? Maybe it's why I'm usually content to simply be in their proximity, usually not even broaching anything personal...just soaking up the happy vibes that being near them provides. Maybe I'm selfish that way.

I often fantasize of what it would be like if I were a type of ghost that could see, but not be seen, feel without being felt, hear without being heard, etc and follow the people I love around silently and unnoticed. I think I would be utterly happy with that, creepily enough. I would never have to risk rejection again, I could just be near them, love them, soak in the sound of the voice, a man's scent, and I'd have all the time in the world to hang around and hear their thoughts. I'd never have to grieve the absence of a loved one or to say goodbye, I could just follow along. And again, this seems somewhat selfish to me, because it absents myself from any sort of action except enjoying the aura of the other person. It would take all the pain out of loving someone, and if I think about it, all the responsibility. That's not very mature.

Bringing the thread back around to cashiering, it's actually working out a lot better than I had thought it would. I don't have to multi-task, the interactions with customers are limited to scripts ("Hi, how are you today?", "Thank you, have a nice day", etc), and there are no extended interactions with the other workers throughout the day as there were in the deli. My ability to remember numbers and to associate them with objects will be useful, and I don't have to obsess over sanitation. I was worried that I'd be bored there, but so far that hasn't been a problem. I've been slammed with customers pretty much all day long. One thing I'll need to work on is recognizing people. Today a guy bought a gift card for $100 and said he'd coem back for it. Well, after awhile I realized that not only had he not coem back for it yet, I had no idea what he looked like! Luckily, he was standing right in front of me (blush).

Sunday, August 05, 2007

In production in the garden:

green beans
tomatoes (picked red ones already, it's been really hot here)
eggplants (yeah, that's how hot it's been)
herbs of various sorts, including basil

The onions are spent. I pulled them and replanted the area with carrots and beets for a fall crop. All in all, it isn't doing too badly for 5 small raised beds in their first year of production. The apple and pear trees look like we'll be getting edible fruit this year, as do the European prune plums. It's amazing what a bit of pruning, weeding, and watering can do.

I'm returning to the grocery store. I'll be keeping two of my landscape customers for now, probably dropping one of them after a month or two (the bulk of the work will be finished by then) and keeping the other couple on a long term basis, because I really enjoy working for them. I'm very happy to be going back to the store, albeit slightly apprehensive. I like the landscaping, but the physical nature of the work, while enjoyable, is so taxing that I can't rack up 8 hour workdays on it anyway. I'm lucky if I make 6 without jeapordizing the next days performance. Besides, winter is coming on and I need medical insurance. I'll miss the landscaping, the option for creativity and ideas....but of course I can always implement all that on my own place.