Giraffe Riding A Bicycle

By: Puja

I actually had a lot of things I wanted to write about recently, but seeing as how I didn’t write any of them down (I really need to get it together), I thought it was time to bring you the Betsy Devos article, but then I asked myself ‘what can you tell people that they don’t already know re: Betsy?’ I promised to write about her every day if she was confirmed (JEEEEEZ) and I haven’t even just once…in my defense, America seems to be poised to fall apart soon, so does Betsy even matter?

That is facetious, obviously she doesn’t matter, but what she does (or as we are learning is allowed to do) may affect the fabric of school children’s lives for years to come. Also the biggest threat to America is the overgrown Keebler Elf known as Jeff Sessions who is pretending to be Attorney General right now, but is basically just stomping around the Justice System throwing kerosene on tenets of equality of justice and threatening to throw a match to it.

I’m not going to talk about that either.

I may finally be at the beginning of what may turn out to be my nervous breakdown (yay multiple existential crisis-es at once), and I really don’t have the energy to think about what orangemort’s cabal of idiots in DC are doing to test our limits before we all revolt.

OK Puja, you’ve written almost 250 words about what you’re not going to write about, what the hell are you going to right about?

It took three days for me to write this: Rage Tears.

I have been in a bad mood lately and everything is harder than it normally is, which makes it harder to shake the bad mood, and before you know it, your bad mood seems to be the norm. Have you ever had a day (or week, month, quarter) like that?

Even up until five years ago, I used to pride myself that I was dead inside. Emotionally dead. I could manage sympathy, but not empathy (unless you were close to me) and I didn’t see the need to always ‘be up in my feels.’ To old me, that was a waste of time. My dad used to say to us “crying doesn’t solve anything” and BOTH my parents would say “do you want something to cry about?” when I was a kid and probably being a brat and crying to get out of something. I’m not blaming my parents for my lack of crying, it served me well to get to where I am, backbone and work ethic and all that.

I have learned that crying can help, and that I don’t need something else to cry about, I already have 10,000 reasons.

But where has that gotten me?

I don’t know what well has opened up in me and all that suppressed emotion is coming out or whether just learning to be a more empathetic person is like a giraffe learning to ride a bicycle, unnatural and probably resulting in weird consequences.

Giraffe-on-bike

Part of this bad mood I can’t shake is that it often just builds until I have a meltdown. What does a typical meltdown look like? Rage Tears.

Rage Tears are what I would call the result of some existential crisis getting under control and then you just happen to lose your shit at the fact that you can’t hold your shit together. Does that makes sense? Probably not, I am uniquely complicated and terrible at explaining my theories. Put another way, Rage Tears are the tears you shed when you are sick and tired of being sick and tired.

I highly recommend self-care, getting some breathing exercises and affirmations in your pocket to help you out of your spiral, and obviously a support system that can save you from drowning. What happens when you feel like you are being an unreasonable burden to your support system? Rage Tears.

And yet another cycle begins.

So in a year that is thus far filled with a lot of wasted eyeliner, I thought I would share some of the things that triggered a meltdown and/or rage tears; it will either make you laugh or commiserate and either are fine with me:

– I am so behind on my Korean Dramas. I know. I used to keep a spreadsheet of all the ones I watch (it was up to 219 in 2014). I pay for a subscription service, but I do not have time to watch anything at all anymore and it makes me really sad. I also lack time/motivation/energy to regularly grocery shop, workout, drink enough water or relax.  I get upset that I don’t have the energy to enjoy things I like. 

– A piece of art fell off my living room wall and I haven’t put it back up. It is literally just laying on the couch. This is just a symptom of me not wanting to clean my apartment. Sure I can get a cleaning lady, but letting a stranger into my space? Ha ha ha ha, no. And it isn’t just the painting, there is a trail of paperwork in my room, CLEAN laundry is piled in a corner of the closet, the sink may at any time may have a coffee cup from a week ago just sitting there. I get upset that I can’t be bothered with simple tasks. 

Side note this general lack of energy and don’t give a fuck about anything attitude has also led to me wearing the same pair of contacts for 4 months, I have developed the habit of grinding my teeth, I don’t go to the dentist, I need to see all my doctors, but I don’t and I probably won’t until I feel like it.

– I am allergic to cigar smoke. So I went to DC over the weekend and tried to hang with some friends, there were some shenanigans, but by the time we got to the cigar bar, I was sick to my stomach, I had to leave. On the ride home, I broke out into a sweat, I had to sit on the corner of a couch with my head on the arm rest for 2 hours. When did I get old? Why don’t I know how to party? What is my life right now? I get upset that I am aging and don’t have enough adventures under my belt.*

*The lack of time thing really makes this hard…that lack of money thing makes it harder.

– I do the most un-feminist thing you can think of at least once a week: I cry at my desk. I’ve only been caught twice in the almost year this has become a routine, thank you very much. I truly don’t think my job is for me. I cannot find one positive thing to cling to (and I don’t count hearing that ‘you are doing a good job’ as something positive, I’d rather hear that from network executives as I build a media empire, not as I am forced to worry about what effing redundant spreadsheet I may have neglected to fill out). And don’t get me wrong, I am out here looking, but no one is asking me to dance…if you get my meaning. I get upset because I feel I have no purpose. 

The last item on the angst list I will keep to myself because you’re strangers and this is my space. Besides, the job “trigger” can be counted on to set me off because I spend the majority of time there, and then they all snowball. They snowball until I am left asking myself

‘WHY AM I ALLOWING THE UNIVERSE TO REPEATEDLY VICTIMIZE ME?’

Why can’t I be self-possessed enough to stop this snowball? Why can’t I be strong enough to push it back up the mountain? Why can’t I just be free of these terrible thoughts?

Once any of the things that gets me worked up happens, all bets are off. Sometimes I can prevent a meltdown, I can catch myself and the de-escalation tools work, sometimes I can depend on my support system (if I even bother to reach out to them, because you know everyone has their own shit to deal with), but other times it is just a chorus led my Mean Me, and dammit I wish I could be as forceful and convincing as she is.

If you need me I will be sitting in the dark wondering how to make a giraffe-friendly bicycle, probably drenched in Rage Tears.

Sigh.

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