Monday, July 2, 2007

I am blocked, and that annoys me to no end, because I'm not lacking for things to write; I just don't really feel the need to expand them beyond a topic sentence and a couple of paragraphs that ultimately lead to nothing even remotely resembling a conclusion.

I am not out of money right now, I have food in the cupboards and social engagements on my calendar. Nothing is hurting, or infected. My car works. Work isn't challenging in good or bad ways. My cats are still adorable. My eating habits have been acceptable, though not stellar. My gym membership expired yesterday, but I didn't renew it because I have a subscription to an aerobics class right now. I went once and have neglected to go again, but I probably will this week. I don't expect to lose weight this week, but I also don't expect to gain anything big. Frankly, I don't care.

I have never, in my entire life, been at a point where I would admit to being bored and disgusted with who I am and what I'm doing, but I think I've finally gotten there. I was cleaning out old Rubbermaid containers of stuff I've carried with me through college and grad school and my last job, and I found a pile of legal pads from five, six years ago stacked neatly in a corner. In my cramped, precise script I had written out shopping lists and meal plans, all perfectly enumerated on a weekly calendar that looked like I had drawn out with a ruler. And like every shopping list I have ever written since I stopped sponging off my parents, the food on it was fresh, healthy, low-fat, no sugar...hopeful, ambitious, and probably wasted in favor of takeout and ice cream. I have been pulling the same bullshit for five years and all the gorgeous lists and tables and entries I made have rendered me enormous, unhappy, and positively lavishing in my own torpor.

I am so, so tired of this holding pattern I've been in since college, and I am so very sick of people who helpfully offer suggestions to make me feel better. "Take a dance class!" "Find some interesting friends in the city!" "Get season tickets to the ballet!" "Stop shopping at Wal-Mart if the sight of braless women in muscle shirts depresses you!" Great, thanks. But the problem is everything seems to be dependent upon everything else in order for me to make a clean break from this malaise...I can't go into the city to do things until I can afford to lose a quarter tank of gas with each jaunt northward, and Iget a fuel-efficient car, but I can't get a car until I pay off my debts, and I can't make substantial payments on debts because I have to eat and stuff, and I can't get the things I need because I'm always paying off debts, but I can't use a credit card to get the things I need because I have to pay off old credit cards, and I can't move into the city because I can't afford the rent, but even though I pay a smaller rent on a bigger place outside of the city, I can't get into the city to make upf for the fact that I live in the flabby, warty backside of the Universe because I can't afford the gas...

And it just goes on and on and on.

And it's not like I haven't tried to find a loophole out of this cycle of not being able to move forward. I'm not just sitting on my ass and complaining about my life. I really have paid down a ton of debt in the last two years, I have researched bank loans for people with messed up credit, I have considered getting a third job just to make car payments, I try to find substitutes for expensive yoga or Pilates classes by doing my own on video or teaching it myself to the kids at school. I research grad schools and make contacts with other people who could help me in the future and try to do research and write and do whatever I can to pad my resume for the time when I can apply in four years. I feel like every day I square my shoulders against whatever battle I have to fight in order to retain some dignity, some footing in moving ahead, and then I go to bed with a clenched jaw and regrets about whatever I screwed up or didn't accomplish enough of during the day before.

I do all of these things...but for what? I'm still supersized, I'm still poor, I'm still the tired, wan girl who might've been pretty at one point but who isn't worth the second look in the grocery line or the bookstore because whatever spark she used to have has since extinguished under a mountain of bills and stress and self-doubt.

And now I've just realized how incredibly stupid my problems must seem to someone who actually has to deal with real issues, and I'm sorry for that.

Anyway. Back to the food, because that's what this is about:

Breakfast: Banana, Iced latte (5 pts)

Lunch: Broccoli cheese soup: (6 pts) Garden salad w/FF dressing: 0 pts

Dinner: Probably Pei Wei

Sometimes I hate my rotten life, especially when I realize it's not even interestingly sucky.

6 comments:

Laura Linger said...

This person, to whom you are so mean, happens to be a terrific writer.

I found your blog by chance, in a search for "acrylic french nails," and I am so impressed. When I discover talented bloggers, I like to feature them over on Sack Of Monkeys In My Pocket, which is my blog. May I feature your blog?

And stop being so hard on yourself. I know that's a lousy cliche, but you can WRITE. That counts for a whole lotta something.

Erin said...

Laura,

Thank you for your sweet words. You can absolutely feature my blog if I can link to yours as well.

Abba said...

Well, are you done now? I am not going to be one of those who tries to give you a helpful suggestion about going to a dance class. Instead, I would love for you to do a post on your lists and recipes. I find it very interesting and it could benefit others. Let me know if you can.

As for the blah feeling, well, get over it sista. Only you can get you out of the funk. You have to be the one to find your mojo again. It took me two months to get out of mine. Hang in there. Feel like taking a trip to Wichita?

Emma said...

Oh you sound like me! But I always say if you can't be neurotic and full of self pity in your blog... then where the hell can you be?

It always passes... you know that... I know that ...

I want to link to you too - it's good reading.

Lori said...

I agree with Laura Linger -- I've always think of you as a talented writer. And you have to stop beating yourself up.

A lot of people spend way too much time trying to go forward or recapture the past. Maybe it's okay to be in a holding pattern. And, frankly, I don't see you as having a boring life. Man, you've paid down a lot of debt.

You do not have to be SuperWoman. OK? You do what you can do. I'm struggling with food at the moment and I'll be happy to maintain. And it's okay for you to be unhappy if you just maintain. We're where we're at for now. And no, I don't recommend you taking a class. Just love yourself a little bit more like we do. 'Kay?

Becca said...

Erin!

Girl, you've got the deep-down-ready-to-get-ready-to-make-a-move blues... drink 'em in! My heart aches to hear a woman take her own life into her hands each day, crunch it into a paper ball and shoot for the trash can... only to miss. Then she laments missing the trash can.

Kiddo, have you ever added up the minutes/hours/days/years you've spent being in a funk? I did. It amounted to almost a year. A YEAR of LIFE spent on this. Go volunteer, Erin. Get out of your head for a year and you'll feel a helluvah lot better (this isn't dance... this isn't about YOU... it's about others).