I think I’ve figured it out. The reason why I’m in a very frequent state of existential angst. I feel like I’m going up a creek in many areas of my life. I’m looking for solutions, even proposing solutions, but very few seem to be picking up what I’m putting down. It could be me. But I have reasons for why I think it’s not just me.
Recently my sanctuary has been my couch, with cozy lamps and candles and husband and pup. Not to mention a bastion of blankies (pitties love blankies in case you didn’t know). I’ve been watching a lot of TV. Granted, we both were feeling under the weather this week. We had very little motivation for household chores or cooking or really anything.
And that’s okay. It’s okay to not be back to (ever) running a million miles an hour to get everything done…. for what purpose? Just to be busy? I don’t know. But I do know that I’m welcoming the shorter days and longer nights with open arms. I’ve been totally fine with heading upstairs to go to bed just short of 8 o’clock. This acceptances comes from the understanding that 1) I am an animal whose body responds to the amount of daily sunlight there is and 2) I learned some shit from the pandemic.
I can’t say the same for society. I am freaking disappointed about it, too. Everywhere I turn there is mass chaos, and I’m not exaggerating. Just come to the school where I work. Come to my local grocery store. Walk down the sidewalk adjacent to a busy road. Chaos is everywhere. (And excuse me for being a little vague in this post about from where exactly the angst is originating.)
One of the aspects of this particular chaos though is that it can manifest itself as quiet, insidious. It looks different than kids shooting up schools and assholes going 95 on 95 and EF-5 tornadoes in December (although we know that’s happening too…). This chaos looks like people not learning a damn thing from the pandemic. Being all too happy to “get back to normal,” as if their normal were actually good. It wasn’t. (Maybe I shouldn’t judge?) It was comfortable. It was easy. It’s much much more difficult to actually look at your pandemic-and-stress-riddled complexion in a mirror and decide to change your ways. It looks like doom-scrolling as if it’s your part-time job. It looks like bitching and complaining about things you could either change or walk away from. It looks like people still being marginalized and discriminated against.
While I don’t particularly feel a strong vibe of all types of chaos everywhere I go, I feel different aspects of it manifesting at different times in different places. Least of all in my own house. So that’s where I feel safe, that’s why it’s my sanctuary. And try as I might to bring some of this into the world, the world (or at least, my world) is telling me in so many words that they don’t want it. They want things to be “normal,” which in my experience is boring, irrelevant, too expensive, exclusive, pedantic. I don’t want that normal. Normal be damned, I say.
A great thing to come out of this pandemic is a lot of people like myself who are looking for something better. We’re trying to change the things we can, and when we’ve exhausted all resources trying to get people on board, we’re going for change.