I can feel it coming again. There’s that same old heavy feeling in my chest. I can hear a rumble as I stand at the cliff bottom, but I can’t be sure if it’s the rocks above tumbling down or the waves crashing toward me to swallow me whole. I feel like an Alka-seltzer, drowning and tossed by the frantic fizzing of my own dissolution.
The day job is getting me down. It’s six months in and I feel no closer to being autonomous in my role. In short, I feel like I’ve been left in a position primed to fail. And I already feel like I fail enough without other people helping it along with their indifference.
The fact is, I’m angry, and sorrowful, and terrified. Nothing seems to be going right (and I’m aware that some of that can be the Down Days shifting my perception). Do you want to know the straw that broke the camel’s back? A stupid accident. I tore my coat, getting out of the car. Crazy, pathetic and dramatic as it might seem, that coat was the one nice thing I own. It’s comfy, cozy, I’ve actually been looking forward to wearing it again as autumn progresses (that’s the kind of thing I’m taking joy from now. The simple things like a warm coat on a cold afternoon). It was also a gift from my wife and one that has great sentimental value, believe it or not. And I tore the sleeve. It’s leather, so fixing it is a bind but it can be done. However, it will never quite be the same again. That one nice thing that I take such pride in.
I know, I know, you can tell me all kinds of platitudes and I’ve already told myself them all. They just don’t help. Not when the Down Days are like this. Not when I can feel my will being drained out of me day-by-day and that familiar spiral stretches itself deeper and deeper beneath me.
My work is frustrating and frankly it’s getting me down all on its own without needing help from anything else. My writing comes to me in an incoherent jumble, if it comes at all. I have no energy, my head buzzes with inanities and at night I can’t sleep.
This is how it was last time I had a huge dip. It’s coming again.
And I stare stupidly at the universe and ask why. Why can’t I catch just a little break? It isn’t like I want a job that pays loads. I’m actually used to being broke and I kind of dig it most of the time (maybe I’m fooling myself into thinking I’m touching souls with the bohemian artists of old). I don’t want much from my life but peace and simplicity. I just want a job that I can turn up to, do well, and go home again. And it isn’t like I expect my books to reach the dizzying heights of Potter-hood. I just want to be able to write, and release my work, for good or ill. I certainly don’t expect to be paid for it.
In short, it feels like everything is unravelling. All of the good things in my life are so many loosely woven threads that drift and separate on the slightest of breezes.
I’m getting to the point where I can’t see ahead any more. All I can see is the dirty lace froth on the wave’s crest, and a small forest of driftwood dragged along with it, cresting, cresting, and crashing down as I scrunch my eyes and hold my breath, wondering if, this time, I’ll run out of air before the water pulls back.
Thanks for reading.