Johnny Boy

I have restarted this blog post three times now. I’m not really sure what I want to write. Sometimes it’s hard for me to put what I’m feeling into words. I do have a tendency to get sad after the holidays. My birthday is on January 7th and that kind of fucks with me too.

For some reason I have felt incredibly sad these last few days. Again, I’m not sure why. I am doing everything the same as I did when I was happy and felt proud of my accomplishments a week ago. I think I just get smacked in the face with loneliness sometimes. I felt a pang of relief when I typed that last sentence so I am going to take that as a sign that it is what is truly bothering me right now.

I know that I have come a long way in my life this last year but I still find myself alone more often than not. This is mostly due to deliberate isolation on my part. I hid for years because it was easier than having to answer to other people. My anxiety makes me say “no” a lot and frankly it’s just easier to have no one around to ask you to go places or do things than always have to say no and explain why. The problem with that is now I am more open to experiences and am trying to say “yes” more but there is no one around to say yes to.

I am tired. Emotionally, physically and mentally tired. Sometimes I just want someone that I can collapse into to feel safe. Someone that I know will look out for me and let me just stop fighting for even a few seconds. Anxiety and depression are exhausting. Fighting in your head everyday to act like things are fine when you know that you are slowly falling apart. Slowly falling back into the pit that you spent so long trying to crawl out of.

I have been on the go a lot recently. I think I’m trying to distract myself from what’s really going on in my head. When I drive around by myself, I do feel lonely and I really just want to go home but sometimes home is even lonelier. I have been distracting myself trying to act like everything is still okay, if I just ignore this for long enough it will go away. The problem with that is when I am in bed at night with nothing to distract me, the feelings creep up. I want to cry and that would probably help but for some reason I just can’t. I’ve never been much of a crier as an adult. I tend to just smile and pretend everything is okay unless I am incredibly overhwlemed or one of those sad SPCA commercials comes on. I suppose I am doing myself a disservice in that regard.

I am trying to be compassionate toward myself and give myself the space to feel the sadness and anxiety that have been creeping up. At the same time, I’m trying not to fall too far back into the place I was before because crawling back out was one of the hardest things I have ever done.

Get up Johnny boy, get up Johnny boy
Get up ’cause the world has left you lying on the ground.
You’re my pride and joy, you’re my pride and joy.
Get up Johnny boy because we all need you now.

So, About Last Year

I get it, 2016 was a shit show for a lot of people. The majority of the North American population was glad to see it go. We lost a lot of music legends, actors and personalities that many people had grown up with. It was also shitty for a lot of people personally. And obviously, Trump happened. For me on the other hand, things went pretty well.

The year started as usual. I hit the after Christmas slump that I’m used to. Once the lights come down and reality sets back in, I tend to get pretty blech (that’s a word, I promise). My birthday is early January so usually after that things go back to dull reality. Add to that the fact that I turned 30 and I was even more shook up. A 30-year-old living with mom…nice.

I had bought an electronic keyboard in hopes of learning to play. I found out shortly after that lessons are expensive as fuck. Luckily, the internet exists. I subscribed to a few teachers on YouTube and even bought a subscription to a midi based learning program. I had every intention of learning, I just never managed to find the time. The internet sucks as a teacher, there is too much other stuff to look at. I started to drift away from it. I didn’t have the motivation. I just wanted to be good, not to have actually work at it. I’m part of the instant pay off generation. I want it and I want it now.

Later in the year, I made a resolution that I would either learn to play piano or learn to drive before the year was over. I highly expected the one I would achieve would be learning piano. I didn’t have a car and I sure as hell didn’t think my anxiety would let me even attempt it. In May, I bought a car so it would be easier for mom to get to and from work, later that month I went for my learner’s license. In October I took my test to get my Novice license. I don’t think I have ever accomplished something so fast. My mind is still blown that learning to drive was what I accomplished. How insane is that?! This is something that I thought I would never be able to do because of money and anxiety.

I also managed to snag a promotion in 2016. I went from getting paid by the line to getting paid hourly. That made my income shoot up dramatically. I have never kept a job for more than about three months. I have kept this job for almost 2 years now. Insanity. More money leads to a car which leads to a license which leads to independence and spending way more money so now I don’t have money…What a circle.

I also jumped off the imaginary anxiety cliff and went to a concert. I wouldn’t have risked it for any band other than Twenty One Pilots. They were worth the risk. That led to more concerts, Awolnation, Alice Cooper, Rob Thomas and have USS coming up in February.

Of course I couldn’t have done a lot of this without my mother. She has been a constant throughout all of this. She is by my side when I need her and reassures me when I feel like everything is ending and horrific things are happening (when in reality, I’m lying in bed having a panic attack).

Having said all this, the end of the year was rough. I had all the usual stress of Christmas and family coming over but I also had the added stressors of a half ripped off eaves trough from all the snow we have received this year (which still hasn’t stopped) and Daisy’s vet bills skyrocketed in December. She had some issues with her paws and then more seizures and she is due for her vaccines and all sorts of things happen with her in December. Christmas snuck up on me. I was still wrapping the night before.

I finally feel like I’m starting to relax after all that mayhem. I have finally been able to just sit on the couch and veg out to crap TV. Daisy is back to herself, the eaves trough is back up, I have my license, I have my mom, I have my animals, I bought a new bed so no more shitty sleeps, I have managed to pull an incredible amount of bravery and confidence out of myself that I didn’t know was there.

To think that all of the changes I made this year started with a bored day on the couch listening to Spotify is insane. Here’s hoping for an even better 2017 (for all of us).