This is the first time that I did not post my entry prior to going to bed, since I began posting every day. I like to get it out of the way earlier in the wee hours of the day so when I get busy/distracted later on, I won’t have to worry and I would still have the entire rest of the day to do it. However, yesterday when I got back last night, a wave of exhaustion just took over me and I curled up on the bed with my body pillow. It was so warm and cozy and Panda was taking a nap on his end, so I just drifted off. The next thing I knew, I was waking up to find my computer turned off. Disoriented, I deliriously turned my computer back on to find Panda again, but fell asleep again soon after. I can’t recall if I ever did sign back on again or what happened from there, but I didn’t wake up again until the morning, as a storm was rolling in.
I’m not sure why I was so tired – perhaps it’s a combination of lack of sleep, long days, and not enough nutrition. I don’t feel like I have been overworked or underfed though, so I really don’t know. In fact, there are times where I am doing background reading and research that feels like my typical internet activity. It has made me want to get more into social media or business psychology consulting, since I love to read article upon article about those topics. So that’s all well and good, but I guess sometimes everything in your life just catches up with you and your body shuts down. I think all the things that were bearing down on me just caught up with me. I’ve been getting a lot of intense piercing pains and headaches this past month; I’ve never suffered through this kind of cranial pain before. It’s not quite a migraine – the symptoms for that are far more intense – but it’s definitely not a pleasant experience. I don’t know why I get them or what I can do about them (I’m not one to take painkillers unless I’m desperate, which happens like once every few months).
Emotionally I have been rather drained as of late. I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to recover from being away from Panda. I don’t miss him any less now than I did before. I spend a lot of time wanting to go back just to see him, but at the same time I really value my time and experience here. Still, it’s hard to get up and go out on the weekends when I can stay online and talk to him. I don’t know why it’s so hard for me. It also hasn’t been easy to find my own way here. I’ve been trying to do more things on my own, which is good, but I’m doing it all alone. There isn’t really anyone for me to hang out with or spend time with. Not that I dislike anyone here, but I’m used to a lot of different social groups, all with different interests and preferences for activities.
And of course, there’s always the feeling that I don’t have a home to go to and crash at. There is no space here that is exclusively mine, which is something I’m not used to. It’s the exact opposite of how I grew up – with rooms to myself for most of the day and often the whole house to myself as my parents traveled around. Even in college, when I shared my room with another girl, half of that room was mine. I could do whatever I wanted and often had time alone in the room. Plus, I could always go home home on the weekends. So maybe it’s just caged bird syndrome that’s got me down. It seems that I need to stop viewing myself so much as an outsider and guest here. It’s hard to break away from that though, since most people I speak to outside of the office don’t seem to be able to understand me. I feel so out of place when I’m not in the office or just alone and it’s a bit disheartening.
Marylin and I talked recently about how I don’t really interact with her parents, which is mostly why I still feel like a guest here. I’m used to holing up in my room all day, doing my own things, so it doesn’t even occur to me to go out to the living room to talk to them, or something along those lines. I’ve tried to greet them here and there, but I tend to be quiet when I do that and it gets lost in Marylin’s own greeting and consequent chatting with them. So, I just keep walking and go to the room to give them time together. After all, they hardly get to see each other, much less talk and hang out. But it seems that my policy of "stay out of their way" is just alienating me and making them… not quite uncomfortable, but you get the idea. It doesn’t help that I am hugely awkward with parents (or anyone I view in an authoritative position). It took me a good 10-12 years to get myself to even be able to look them in the eye.
So, I need to work on putting myself out there more, even if it terrifies me. I just don’t like to stand there awkwardly and not know what to do or say. Before I left, my mom told me to offer to help with household chores, but that is taken care of the maid, so the most I do is clear the table after eating. Starfish advised that I just ask them how their days were and I don’t know if I’m just not seeing opportunities to, but I feel like I haven’t really had a chance to say anything to them. Either they’re watching TV or they’re not around. Marylin’s mom will pop in on the weekends to offer me food, but by the time I go out to eat it, she’s retreated to her room or is out already. There was one time she left it on the bed for me, so I just ate it in the room. I usually don’t even see her dad around, but for when he’s watching a game or tournament.
And maybe it’s just me, but if I’m watching something, I don’t want to be disturbed. On the weekends when Marylin’s going through her CSI Supreme Sunday fix, she tends to switch channels during commercials, which is something I never do. If I’m watching something, I’m focused on it and I don’t want to miss out on any of it. If it’s streaming live and I can’t pause it, I don’t do anything to disrupt that. When it comes down to it, I just don’t know how to handle those situations. When is it appropriate to say something? What should I say? How do I know if they’re talking just because they don’t want to be rude or if they actually don’t mind? Sigh, I hate being awkward with older generations. I’m not a "bring her home" type of friend. I can’t even call them by their first names – the first time I called someone other than my peer by their first name was when I was 19. Why am I so stiff?
Maybe this chronic exhaustion is due to too much processing for my brain. From the work I’m doing and all that I’m learning to the struggles I’m undergoing, it’s a lot to handle. I worry a lot because I think and analyze a lot. I don’t like to share any of my stress though, so I’m hard-pressed to find an outlet. I don’t like to complain and I don’t like to ask for help. Meanwhile, Marylin will let out a sigh or talk about her frustrations with some of the work she’s trying to deal with. Since I’m not used to expressions like that, it stresses me out to hear and see that too, especially when she taps her fingers impatiently. For some reason, just hearing that speeds up my heart rate and makes me more anxious. I tend to notice small details like that, which then makes things that aren’t a big deal out to be much bigger than usual. I am a people-pleaser, but it seems that my approach in keeping to myself is not pleasing at all. Then there are all the things I miss and want to do when I get back, but I’m trying to make myself focus on being here now and doing new exciting things. It’s hard to be here and focused when my heart is not with me. Whoever knew I could be such a homebody?
Gosh, I’ve got a lot to work on.