"Ordinary life does not interest me. I seek only the high moments. I am in accord with the surrealists, searching for the marvelous." ~Anais Nin

20 August 2014

Moving Forward, Staying Still

First off, I want to say thank you to all my friends and family for your support in the wake of last weeks post.  I'm so very glad that I have people who care about me in my life, however peripheral.  That said, please, please stop sending me suicide prevention hotline numbers.  I assure you that I'm not suicidal.  I'm just massively unhappy with the path my life is currently on.  That doesn't mean I want to die.

My mother, she with a psychology degree, says that depression is just anger turned inwards.  I get that.  It makes sense to me.  Since I fluctuate between raging at the world and at myself, it makes sense to me.  It's just that I don't know how to fix this: my life.  I don't know how to find success and happiness.  I can't seem to do anything but fail, and it makes me bitter.  How do you get a job?  Or even a job interview?  I'm closing in on 700 resumes sent or applications filled and have only gotten two interviews.  I try, but no one is interested in giving me a chance.

I've applied for jobs that I'm perfectly qualified for - jobs that seemed like they were made just for me - and nothing.  I've applied for jobs that I'm overqualified for, and nothing.  I've applied for jobs that I'm under-qualified, and, of course, nothing.  There are only so many ways I can change my resume.  So many times it can be rewritten.  I keep trying and I keep failing.  Again and again and again and again.  I don't know what to do.  I don't know what else to do.  Is there something in me that's lacking?  Something other people can see, but I can't?

What do I have to do to get a full time job?

I'm not sure that I believe that it will ever happen.  And then what do I have?  Nothing.  Useless degrees and many thousands of dollars of student debt.  I can't afford a life.  

I'm so ready for this summer to be over.  Autumn needs to come and bring with it crisp air and cool rains to wash away the mess the summer has left in it's wake.

I don't know what I'm going to do with my life.  I need some kind of plan, some structure.  I thought the library would give that to me.  I could make my career, find my place . . . The truth is, I've been questioning that assumption all along.  For all that I would be a fantastic librarian, for all that I spent tens of thousands of dollars getting a degree that would allow me to move up in the field (provided anyone gave me a chance to get out there), for all that I've invested my time and energy and spent my spirit, I've questioned . . . From the beginning I've questioned if this was the right path for me. 

I want it to be.  I would love to work in a library in a librarian position, as a professional, as an integral part of my community.  And I love libraries, I do, but I don't fit.  I don't know why, but I don't.  I wish I did.  It would be so much easier, but when, of late, has anything been easy?

The thing is: what else can I do?  What. Else. Can. I. Do?  What else can I do?

That's the crux of my problem: I don't know.  I don't know what to do.  I don't know what else I can do?  I just know I can't stay here.  Stagnant.  I've got to move forward with my life, and I don't know how.  I need to find a job, and I don't know how.

I suppose I'll have to figure it out, because I can't stay here.  I can't.

It should be an interesting journey.

12 August 2014

Drama. Heartache. I'm so done.

Sometimes I wish I could just burn my life to the ground and scatter the ashes to the winds.  Or cut ties, walk away from everything, begin again.  No sick and helpless father (though he's out of the hospital now and still has both feet/legs!).  No massive student debt ($48,000+).  No crappy infighting and bullying at the library.  No annoying underemployment.  No frantic, fruitless job hunt.  I could be/find something novel, something new.  I could find my place without the weight of everything dragging me down.

I imagine myself as a of the hero in one of the fantasy novels I love so much: wanderer, poet, mage, bard, adventurer, lover, dreamer, warrior, witch, princess, thief.  Brave and strong and smart.  Wild and wily.  Have you ever noticed that they don't need funds?  That they can walk away from or stab their enemies?  Have you noticed how everything works out for them - these heroes of my faery tales?  Somehow, everything works out.  It must, otherwise it wouldn't be a good story.

Life isn't a story.  It sure as hell isn't a faery tale.  And I'm not sure that anything's going to work out for me.

I'm so tired of bad luck.  I'm so tired of failure.  I'm so tired of thinking I'm moving forward only to find myself further back than when I started.  I'm tired of not being told what I'm supposed to do at work, then getting in trouble when I don't do it.  And I'm tired of platitudes, and "it gets better"s, and false reassurance, and "at least you don't live in (whatever 3rd world hellhole is fashionable at the moment)"s.  I'm tired of "it could be worse."  I know it could be worse, but it's pretty damn bad now.

I almost walked out of the library tonight.  That's one of two things I've never done at any of my jobs: I've never quit without giving at least a months notice and I've never been fired.  But I was ready to walk out, go home, and never return.  My boss actually talked me out of it.  She was right when she pointed out that it would damage my future career.  It would, but I'm not really sure I have a future career to damage.  I have a couple of meaningless, expensive pieces of paper that ideally should make me employable, but haven't seemed to help me at all.  I have a constant headache and tears in my eyes every single night, but especially when I leave the library lately.  I have a brain that replays the bad parts of my day, my life, over and over and over again keeping me from getting to sleep until I pass out by way of pure exhaustion.  I have a desire to cut myself, something that is so fucking cliche and upsetting to me, something I haven't done in over a decade.  I have an almost pathological fear of going to work, and the beginnings of a need to avoid libraries from now until the end of time.

Which sucks because I truly love libraries.  And for the most part I love my job.  I LOVE helping people find books, answering questions, doing research.  I love thinking up programming ideas and learning about new trends and conceptualizing my ideal library.  I love making pathfinders and study aids.  There is a comfort for me in libraries, but it's slipping away because of stupid internal politics and a fucking bully of a supervisor.

And I hate it.  I hate that I hate going to work now.  I hate that I feel underutilized and unappreciated. It just compounds, you know?  It just keeps getting worse.  I'm so stressed and upset and it seems like nothing is going my way.  Nothing IS going my way.  All my family drama is stacked on top of my professional failures is stacked on top of my general depressed person depression, and that twisted layer cake is topped with this new work bullshit.  Something's gotta give.  I just can't do it anymore.  I'm having nightmares, night terrors, again.  I woke myself up screaming and tearing into my arms the other night with my fingernails.  I can't do this anymore.  I feel sick inside.  Rotted.

Knowing that I'm not the most stable, mentally, at the moment, and not in the best frame of mind to make decisions, I'm going to give it a couple of weeks - until the end of the month.  Then I'm probably going to quit my job.  I hope that something comes up before that.  That somehow, miraculously, one of the many, many, many places to which I've applied gives me chance.  It would be better that way, easier.  With my luck, though . . . 

I wish I could just walk away from it all.  Disappear.  Go on some grand and magical adventure, and return home triumphant, if I return home at all.  Life's not that neat though.  It's messy and awful and painful.  There is no "better."  There is only the same or worse.  Or at least that's the way it's been for me for my life.  And I know from trying that there's no way for me to change it.  I endure.

05 August 2014

So this is happening

Yesterday morning my dad was taken to the ER.  He was in bad, bad shape: vomiting, sweating, pain, etc., etc.  We thought that maybe it was a heart attack.  We were wrong.  I don't know whether to be grateful for that or not.

He was admitted to the hospital around 6:00 a.m.  Shortly thereafter he complained that his left leg felt like it was swollen and it was going numb.  The idiot doctor ignored his complaints saying that it was just because he was laying on his back.  Later he was unable to move his toes and some of the nurses said his leg was cold to the touch, the idiot doctor still insisted that it was because he way laying on his back.  We, his family, thought this sounded pretty stupid.  My mom told the idiot doctor that laying on his back really didn't seem like a realistic explanation for a numb leg and the inability to wiggle his toes.  The idiot doctor replied testily, "What do you think it is?"  Like someone with no medical training could diagnose something.  Mom suggested a stroke or something.  She was dismissed out of hand.

And to be fair it wasn't a stroke . . .

This morning my dad couldn't move his foot.  His lower calf and foot were purple, no pulse could be found.  Blood clots blocking off circulation.  A vascular surgeon was called in and an emergency thrombectomy (removal of blood clots) was performed.  Clots and scar tissue was removed from his groin to just below his knee.  The surgeon couldn't get into his lower calf and foot without risking my dad's life and (quite literally) limb.  When he came to tell us about how my dad did in the surgery, the surgeon kept saying, "I didn't want to risk his life to save his leg."

Right now we're playing a waiting game.  The surgeon managed to save my dad's leg for now.  We don't know yet whether he'll be able to use that foot.  It's quite likely that if he is able to use his foot, there will be partial paralysis and numbness in it.  And the real question is not whether his lower (at least) leg will have to be amputated, but when it will have to be amputated.

I guess we'll just have to see how it goes.