Thursday, January 14, 2016

Nuanced Exhaustion

I’ve been contemplating the nuance of exhaustion. After writing non-fiction, I feel exhausted from purging. It feels as if I’ve been carrying around huge, round metal weights that didn’t have handles.  Not only did I have to carry around these painful, caustic weights but I also had to balance them all without dropping any of them. After I’ve drafted a chapter, I feel like I’ve finally set all the weights down in their proper place, where they can’t hurt anyone. I’ve secured things as best as I could. There is finally a sense of balance. Now, I can recuperate.

The exhaustion I feel after speaking with my family is quite the opposite. It is a matter of taking on the burden of weight rather than relieving one’s self of weight. I also put on literal weight when I interact with them. I end up eating unhealthy food consistently in an attempt to self-soothe. My family is comprised of people who have bottomless wells of need and pain but limited means or desire of purging these things. I am not referencing financial means, I am talking about clarity of self. If one is unhappy in one’s life, one can either make a plan and change it or accept one’s life. There’s no need to hurt unassuming people or to try to make other people miserable.

I re-read my “The Blessing of Solitude” post, and it made me smile. I’ve tried to make a quiet, peaceful life for myself. It’s far from perfect, and, at times, my level of peace is tenuous, but I keep at it. In ways, it was difficult being estranged from my family, but I felt less tumult than I do now. I’m trying to find balance by limiting my correspondence to family members who don’t drain me and only talking to those who do drain me once every two to four weeks. I’m trying not to revert to my old coping strategies of cutting off my emotions completely and disappearing. I’m trying so hard.

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