It’s kind of as if I’m a character in a Phillip K. Dick novel who’s had his past reprogrammed so that his perception of his life is completely different. At the moment, it doesn’t matter what reality really is, because my reality, at the moment, is the way I feel, right now.
When I feel this way, I wake up, and I’m down. This presents me with three choices, and the first one is to just roll over and go back to sleep. This kind of works at the moment, but then, when I wake up, I’m more down, because I’ve just spent a good portion of the morning sleeping.
The second option is to try to figure out just why I’m feeling down. This is sort of the way I am when I have a pain in one of my joints. Instead of just leaving it be, I try to sort of manipulative the thing, with the belief that if I do so I’ll sort of hear this slight, therapeutic, chiropractic cracking sound of everything moving back into its correct place, and all will be well.
Unfortunately, this turns out to never be the case. So I lie there, worrying and probing this feeling of blah (usually a regret about the past of some sort), believing that if I just think about it a little bit more, I will finally solve the mystery of what has been getting me down, for all time.
After doing this for a while, I go back to the first option of rolling over and going back to sleep again.
Lately, finally, I’ve been exercising the third option, which is just to get out of bed and live with this dull ache in my psyche. Even when I do that, of course, temptations toward slack entropy are all over the place. No, I shouldn’t shower and get dressed just yet, because I can check Facebook, all the while drifting back to the self-centered work of living in my head, trying to figure out just what is getting me down.
When I feel this way, showering, shaving and getting dressed feels like a monumental victory.
I hate the way my body feels when I haven’t showered; for the record, it’s not dirt or the way I smell, but the feeling of someone having poured rubber cement under my arms and between my legs while I’ve been sleeping. When I feel this way, just skipping the shower thing and getting dressed makes me feel as if I’m wearing scratchy wool all over, with this constant undertone of a feeling that I can only describe as not just the sound of nails on a blackboard, but the shivering, wince-inducing essence of it.
The notion of wearing a suit without having showered...I can’t even think about that.
I don’t know how people can go camping without showering for days. I simply don’t. And when I think of the prospect of feeling this way for days, I simply cannot see how there can be even a scrap of joy to this.
Yet for all my aversion to not having showered first thing in the morning, I sit there, in front of my computer for ages on a weekend morning. I rationally know that I probably would be enjoying this if I took the time to shower first, and get dressed. But I don’t.
On the other hand, though, here I am, having fully exercised my third option. I got up, shaved, showered, got dressed, and am now sitting here writing in the bagel store. There is still that dull ache of whatever it is that I’m down about, but there are now words to post. That is something.