March 10th, 2019


Sunday Morning Pages 03-10

Morning pages is a simple exercise: write two pages about whatever is on your mind without editing. In this format, I'll just write until I fill the text box (scroll the top text out of view) twice.

I'll post whatever I end up writing, including typos.

Woke up this morning feeling sluggish and congested. It's probably the donuts and the non-butter spread from yesterday. I think it did a number on my mood as well, because I'm thinking about a bunch of stuff. Not fun stuff. Thinking about the future, about doors having closed, and all that.

When I got up, or shortly after I got up (first I watched some YouTube videos) out of bed, Bryce went on a video call with one of his friends. If I'm not in a good mood, hearing him talk about his life with his friends is kind of demoralizing. I'm not directly envious of him, but I feel more aware of the lack of things in my life.

I don't think I have a big, strongly connected network of friends like he does, or how other people do. Partly, it's just because of my personality. I am picky about with whom I choose to associate. But it's also that it's hard for me to connect to people, or more precisely, feel connected to people. I can socialize just fine, but the connection feels shallow, because there's all this stuff I'm carrying around behind (?) me that I can't really share or be open about.

At this point I hear the, "Why do you have to?" sort of objections, something maybe someone would say if I were talking to them.


Whatever, I'm not going to explain that part. I'll just end by saying that I do like feeling connected and I don't like feeling alone in my issues. I still don't feel like I can talk out everything I'm experiencing with anyone and be heard, at least with the friends I talk to on a more regular basis. Or the people I talk to on a regular basis.

I'm tempted right now to write to explain stuff to people who don't know much about how my life is right now, how my social life is organized. I'll avoid that, but I do feel anxiety about assumptions. I feel pretty isolated a lot of the time, even though I interact with people.

That's not so true recently, maybe because I'm getting more into classes. But outside of classes, when I'm out and around town, or even worse, when I'm alone in the house, I do feel isolated.

A recurring theme is I don't feel like people understand what I'm going through, which makes it sound like there's a secondary problem, which there are, or underlying issues, which there are, but it's sort of circular. I'm older than all my cousins, as well as my brothers. I can't really talk to them without changing the dynamic.

And then I'm cheery with friends. I'm just so optimistic about what actions I can take, trying not to look like I'm moping. I don't want to mope.

What I said before was correct: I'd want people not to give up if they were in my position. Not give up even on a day by day basis. But having some kind of hopeful orientation, the "maybe, you never know" attitudes that people always say—very, very vexing. Sometimes painful. I've had so many disappointments in that category that it's really hard to say that. I don't think it works, because I don't believe it. If there's a "maybe, you never know" kind of thing out there, I assume that unless I work very hard and maintain it as a goal, it won't happen.

And if I or another person is saying, "maybe, you never know", then it means that neither they nor I know about a path to get there.

There were a lot of things like that when I got to Japan. People were telling me that they were so excited for me. But now it's over. I am disappointed in a lot of things I wasn't able to do. I have experienced things that have been meaningful, that I wouldn't have been able to experience otherwise.

I don't want to hinge it on social approval, but it feels like a lie to say that I'm satisfied. It's frustrating. It's easier for me to feel heartbroken, feel disappointed, and then do things to deal with that. And I can appreciate the other things that have happened regardless.

I feel like it's analogous to having tried to run a business. I worked seven years for this, and then had one and a half years. I could have done better. I could have been more prepared. That's the lesson I guess. But in the end, I didn't accomplish what I hoped to accomplish.

Let's just let that stand. Let's not try to brush the stuff under the rug. To do that feels insulting to the whole experience, and to reality.

I didn't even end up writing about what I feel bad about today. Mostly, I've been feeling sad about the future. And about getting older and being a balding fat guy with hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt. Really, I don't think about the debt sometimes—mostly, I feel like a small, balding fat guy with no money and poor social standing.

I can deal with that, maybe. Because I can change. But I can't change the idea that time is going forward. I can't have in the future what I didn't have in the past, because we can't change the past.

I don't want to give up on this. I'm not giving up on this. But that's what's on my mind.