January 11, 2010

Coming clean

What gets you out of a funk? Do you try to ignore it and get through the day with a perma-grin on your face, repeating "I'm fine" to those who may ask you how you're doing or do you submit to it, stay in bed watching television and eating what you want; the unhealthy the better.

I have a hard time as one part of me wants to slap myself across the head and say "snap outta it, you have nothing to complain about - you have so much to be thankful of. Don't be a self centered ninny - get out there and soldier on". The problem with that is I feel like a phony, untruthful, playing a role that doesn't sit well.

I'm incredibly unsettled; one of the side effects of being a legal alien. Years ago I would have tried to avoid these feelings, gone back on some kind of antidepressants to calm the dull funk and uneasiness, but not this time.

One of my dilemmas is trying to find the importance in what I do and where I live. I want to be fulfilled, feel like I have made a difference somewhere. Its easy for me to post poems and photos of places that give me joy but honestly at times, I don't truly feel that way. My younger sister works for the Human Rights Commission; my older sister is now working in Zimbabwe as an aid worker, after having spent 1 year in the Sudan. There is importance in what they do.

I'm contemplating taking a hiatus from my blog as I don't want it to become a rant about how unsatisfied I am and bore you all. I will keep you all posted.


Tania Kindersley said...

Oh please don't leave us. I think it is a strange time. Even though I am firmly rooted in the soil of Scotland, I have also been feeling odd, unsettled, restless. I wonder if it is just too much bad news, especially where you are. Even the hero of hope and change, it turns out, can't get a good healthcare bill; the Republicans and teabaggers grow more bonkers by the day; the wars drag on; the climate is changing. You could be having a perfectly logical reaction, as Western capitalism teeters on the brink.

Know also the why am I not saving the world guilt. At least my brothers and sister are much more feckless than I. But I think a life can have importance if it spreads small increments of joy, adding something to the sum total of human happiness.

The books of Dorothy Rowe always make me feel better. Do try them; she is so wise and soothing. Also, a proper psychologist and not a charlatan.

Best of British. xxx

corine said...

Dissatisfied people make for great bloggers, look at me :-)
.. and I too am surrounded with people who get stuff done, whereas all I do is produce words that don't get published. Comparing sure is the enemy.

I have finally learned to ride the waves of funk. They come and go, so hang tight.

Helena Halme said...

I also beg of you, don't stop blogging.

I cannot begin to tell you how much your post resonates with me. I feel as foreign in my home country as I do in the UK. Sometimes I look at my children and think how can I have British children? There's not a blonde strand of hair between them.

As for doing good, well, you never know what impact your just being there might have on others. Corine put it very well, 'Comparing sure is the enemy.'

Helena xx

Miss Whistle said...

I agree with Tania, it's a really strange time of year, especially here in LA where it's warm and not wintery at all, while the rest of the world is wearing snowboots and drinking piping hot tomato soup.

My rule of thumb is, upon returning from a trip home, don't make any decisions for at least a month. It's always so miserable to return to blythe, grimy, commercial-ridden LA after spending a few weeks at home.

I really don't think you're alone in feeling that and I'm here to say I'm going to drag you out for long hikes in the Santa Monica Mountains so we can look at the sun on the Pacific Ocean and breathe in some sea air. I'll bring chocolate and some oranges and maybe some spotted friends.

Also, music is very uplifting. I recommend Vaughn Williams & Otis Redding.

But, whatever you do, don't leave the blogosphere. For all the comments you get, there are hundreds more people who love what you write and depend on you (and your glamorous life - ha ha!).

Much love,

Miss W x

Miss Whistle said...

Dear So Lovely,
I posted a whole comment about three hours ago, but for some reason it didn't take. So, here I am saying, please don't go, you're needed and loved.
Miss W

So Lovely said...

Thank you all for your kind comments. Its always so wonderful to know that there are others out there who feel like I do, perspective is such a lovely thing. xxx

Susan Champlin said...

Hello, dear Charlie Circus. I so understand your feelings of funk and restlessness. Having spent years writing bunk for people who don't deserve it (!), I've gone through a lot of career angst—wanting to do something that puts some positive force into the world, rather than just swirling around the same superficial crap. But what? Law school? Teaching inner-city high school? Writing press releases for Greenpeace? I'm still working on that. The NY move has helped distract me, but the question remains. I hope we can share our thoughts along the way. (Re blogging: I would say please don't ever worry about "boring" us—but also don't feel any pressure to blog. We love you regardless!) xo

The Divorcee said...

Hey there,

I haven't much more to add to the already beautifully articulated comments above. But if any consolation, if any at all, you aren't alone. You have a wonderful way with words and have provided me with great diversion and smiles at your warmth and insight.
In this most treacherous of months do come back and don't lose sight.


Wzzy said...

I, for one, am very happy to have you continue to vent here, because you're giving voice to something all of us feel inside, whether citizen or alien. In addition to homecoming, I think it's birthdays and New Years that set off these thoughts. They're markers of time that lead us to think more seriously than usual about how we're spending our days.

What your sisters do is more than commendable, and as humans, we're all the more fortunate that they walk the walk. That DOESN"T mean, though, that the things that you do have less merit. On the contrary; you have the ability to help people's careers and to help audiences change their perceptions. That's a lucky and powerful place to occupy.

Last, I concur with dear Miss W. - do not make any major life decisions for at least a month following your return from such an emotional and cathartic journey.

Lots of love to you. xo

mothership said...

please be gentle with yourself, and don't do anything that will further isolate you. If you leave the blogosphere you leave friends behind, even if they are virtual ones. There is nothing worse than loneliness to exacerbate the feelings you are speaking of and we all feel them, particularly after returning home and very much at this time of year.
Be kind, non-judgemental and gentle.
You are cared for.

shayma said...

dear charliecircus, please dont leave the blogosphere. being a sensitive, feeling person, you are always going to have these sort of thoughts- (dare i call them existentialist thoughts)- but please carry on over here and stay with us- as MTFF said to me, we all get the re-entry blues. regarding what your siblings are doing- there are other ways of being kind- look at Bill Gates- look at Soros- they are entrepreneurs but do so much for humankind- no matter what your profession is, there are always way to be kind and giving- which you seem to be. x shayma

thebubbreport said...

I am right there with you. Please keep sharing with us, I find your honesty extremely refreshing, and what you say really resonates with me. I wish I were brave enough to be as honest as you are in your blog.