I'm feeling this knot of fear in my stomach. Mostly over school in the fall. There are all these questions like:
- How will I adjust to being in school?
- How will I juggle everything?
- What if I screw things up for the gazillionth time?
- What if everyone hates my writing?
- What if my students hate my teaching?
- How will I manage recovery?
- What if I relapse?
- What if I gain weight?
That last one is a doozy. Seriously. The intellectual Carrie knows that it should be the least of my worries. But the emotional Carrie knows that she will freak the f*ck out if her clothes stop fitting.
The obvious solution is: then get new clothes, ya ding dong! Problem solved.
Only not really. Then there's the do-I-keep-all-the-new-clothes-I-just-bought problem. The how-soon-can-I-lose-this-weight problem. The what-if-it-doesn't-stop problem. And so on.
I'm walking into a veritable mine field. I know I need to learn how to keep my perfectionism in check. That all A's, the perfect meal plan, the perfect exercise plan, the perfect lesson plans, the perfectly clean apartment are NOT going to happen. Not separately, and certainly not all together. I get this.
But I still want it.
I want to feel okay, both with myself and with the world. I feel so bruised from the last year and a half. I have learned a lot, come quite a ways in recovery. I eat now. With marginal freedom. I am no longer addicted to numerous varieties of pills related to eating disorders. I'm not sobbing and suicidal the majority of my days. So however crappy these months have been, at least they haven't been totally pointless.
Still, the fear remains.
There are the questions of: what will this next year bring? Will I make it through the next year? Intact?
I wish I had the spirit of "I'll handle it! Whatever comes my way, I'll handle it!" But that's probably not going to happen. I'm not like that. I can usually make things happen. That's usually not a problem. At least with the little things.
On the other hand, I have to manage all of these things at once. Wake up, go to class, teach, appointments, do work, eat, sleep again, repeat the next day. And it is freaking me out. All of it. The vast magnitude of the task in front of me.
The helpful therapist would say to take it one thing at a time. How can you take things one at a time when there are ten of them flying at you at once? Do you get some sort of task fly swatter? Swing it around with a sort of psychotic glee screaming, "Die, dammit!"
That sounds absurdly appealing. Paper to write? Swat it. Phone calls to make? Swat the phone. (Or, if you are me, chuck the phone against the cement floor and watch it explode into little pieces. Though I have not, to date, performed this experiment.)
I'm rambling right now. Quite pathetically. I just don't know how I'm going to manage everything. I know that I'm going to have to lower my standards, which frankly pisses me off. It's like juggling, only I can't, um, juggle.
Minor detail there.
Maybe one day I'll look around and say, "That's enough. I'm satisfied." I just wish that day would come. I want to be satisfied with my efforts. Sometimes I am. Mostly not. I feel the deck is stacked against me because some days, when the depression and anxiety get real bad, it's struggle to make it out of bed, or to be social. And I can't help but get jealous that other people don't have those problems. I don't know- maybe they do. Writers in general are not known to be an emotionally stable lot.
So for right now, I'm here, I'm writing, I'm managing things. Which really isn't all that bad.