From the Blog

I Don’t Even Do Drugs

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Not having a job means I get to stay home more, I get to create my own hours, and it also means I have a lot more time to myself. I’m not going to lie. It’s fucking awesome.

I like spending time alone. Solitude helps me slow down and stop and to hear my own thoughts. It’s not a usual characteristic for an outgoing personality. I’m a somewhat socially adverse extrovert. I like people, but they exhaust me. You can ask any members of my family what happens when Heather doesn’t get enough “alone time.” (hint: I become Utterly Humor Free Snarly Miss Crabbypants.)

Now since I’ve quit my job and I’m working from home, I’ve had more solitude than I have since the first few weeks I moved to Portland. It’s great. I’m reading more, I’m taking care of nagging tasks, and planning our move to Astoria. I’m beginning to feel structured and useful.

Although, I’m also sort of freaking out. I’m staying organized and keeping all the balls in the air, but holy crap. I legitimately have an ass ton of stuff to worry about. Don’t get me wrong. Worrying is one of my favorite most fun activities ever. At least being somewhat organized means it’s focused worry, and not just that white hot unfocused neurological anxiety that swims in my brain at 3 in the morning. Look it up in the DSM-IV-TR. I’m in there.

Getting reacquainted with solitude has made me feel greedy for more time alone. It’s nice to not feel cramped with obligations for others. It’s nice that my mental space is becoming more my own. It’s easier for me to accommodate my fickle sleeping patterns. If I am up in the middle of the night with insomnia, I can get out of bed and read for a while, knowing that I don’t have an alarm to wake up to the next morning.

The alone time is sort of like introducing yourself…to yourself. I remember, oh yeah, I wanted to do this or that, before all these other people got in the way. It has become clear, in my newly found alone time, reading or working or writing or internetting or conversating, that I have a really hard time concentrating on things. I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised by this. I have a hard time concentrating at all. On anything.

I was trying to tell Dave something the other night, and I started my thought, then I had to stop and search and search and search for the words to complete my sentence. Repeatedly. I can’t remember what I was talking about (obviously), but it seems like these mental lapses occur a lot. This is a normal pattern in my speech. I can’t remember what I’m talking about, even as I’m talking. I don’t even do drugs.

I’d like to think the solitude is going to help me slow down and smell the roses, and pet the kitties, and smile at babies and old people, and feel more “alive.” That’s what they say happens, right? I’m supposed to be calm and relaxed and more in tune with the world or something? So far, spending more time alone makes me feel like I have sped up. What the hell? Where’s my goddamned serenity?

Ramping up feels more my natural state. I’d like to think my natural pace will make me fabulously productive. It has happened on some fantastically energetic days. That white hot worry can generate a lot of energy and power.

I’d like to think all my fragments are going to coalesce and I’ll pick up bits and pieces of my mind that I forgot I had. Or, and more likely, I may realize that I’m just naturally scattered, I’m always going to be a worry wart, and age is only helping me as I kick my marbles under the fridge and other places they are impossible to recover.

I think maybe, I ought to start doing drugs.


  1. You know, I remember that feeling. Give it some time. It will pass. You are just used to the ramped up feeling and like an infant without swaddling, when you are not restricted, you probably feel a little subconsciously panicky. We felt the same way the first few months of our freedom from jobs. It will pass, although we found our greed for alone time did not….

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