Friday, September 20, 2013

My personal curious case of less is more.

Here's something I have noticed about myself.

I've had nearly three weeks off of work now. Three weeks in between jobs. I knew I had two paychecks coming from my last job and my husband has a good job so I could afford to take a little time off. A vacation of sorts. I thought I would enjoy this, resting up, getting up whenever I wanted, doing household chores leisurely, reading anytime I wanted.

I found I did not enjoy it so much.

I found sleeping in made me feel part of the day was wasted, even though I hate getting up early. Not getting up with my husband meant I didn't get to see him until the evening.  Not that we do anything spectacular with the early morning fifteen or twenty minutes we have together. We're both bleary-eyed, drinking coffee and smoking, occasionally talking about what we'll do later on that day or what we'll do together in the evening. After he leaves for work I go out and run or ride my bike or start on the writing I want to do for the day.

So I didn't enjoy sleeping in...but...I couldn't get my ass up out of bed. I slept in but got no benefit from it.

I wonder how that feels. Sleeping weightless.
Those lights would probably bother me.
Sleeping in Space is Easy, But There's No Shower

During this three week vacation I could of course still get up with him if I'd wanted to. I tried to do it.  I'd set my alarm but I'd just shut it off. I guess some part of my subconscious didn't deem it necessary and I couldn't drag myself out of bed as I had when I still had to budget my time and energy for work.

I didn't get household chores done because...and I do not claim any logical sense to this statement...there was always more time to do them. I hate these chores; they are mind-numbing. Tedious. Just fucking boring. For some reason they give me no sense of accomplishment, no over all feeling of order. They're just another boring thing I have to do and if I have plenty of time to do them they can always wait until later. I have books to read, god damnit. There are other worlds with far more interesting things going on in them than having to wash the dishes for the one thousand and eleventh time.

Oh, Allie Brosh. You are so perfect, just the way you are.
picture credit: Hyperbole and a Half

Not that I don't procrastinate with chores when I'm working an outside job too. I do. Just not to the extent I did in the past three weeks.

I was trying to explain this strange break in logic to TheMan last night. After I'd spoken to my new boss and gotten a set schedule for the week...I suddenly found it much easier to come home and start cleaning up. It just wasn't as boring. What. The Hell.

TheMan proposed the idea that perhaps I now feel I have "a purpose" again, over and above that of caring for the house and family.

Purpose...I haz it again?

I respectfully submitted that being a household caretaker is a fine and noble purpose in and of itself.  I don't like the idea that I can't find joy and fulfillment in caring for my family. But apparently I can't.

What is a purpose? The general definition is, "the reason for which something is done or created or for which something exists."  Hm. Okay. While I really do love being a massage therapist and helping people achieve health and renewal, I don't know that it's my purpose in life. I'd much rather my purpose be telling stories for people to read.

Please keep in mind, o dearest reader, this is subjective. This is all about me. I am not making my experience a corollary to any other person's, male or female.

So, if I'd rather my purpose be writing, shouldn't I have been, oh, I don't know...writing?

But I wasn't. Not in the way I'd wanted to. My writing has suffered on vacation. Shouldn't I have gotten MORE writing done? I had plenty of time. I thought my days would be filled with hours of clacking laptop keys. I thought my stories would pour out of my fingers with ease and grace.  But characters stop talking to me. They ceased their silly, knees-bent, running-about, advancing behavior. I got nothing done in those three weeks. I was more creatively productive when I had less time to write. How does that work?

Mr. Productive. I bet he doesn't need an outside job to get his characters to move.
Stephen King: The 'Craft' Of Writing Horror Stories order to create the drive I need to fulfill my personal inner purpose...I, for some reason, also need outer purpose...over and above the insular life of the household.

Huh. I sort of feel I ought to be able to create drive on my own. But I have not been able to. In fact having no job sort of paralyzed me. I wasn't earning any money and felt no need and no desire to leave the house. I hate not contributing to the general household through earnings.

Okay, I'm tired of pondering now. And I have to go do stuff.

1 comment:

  1. I feel a wave of words washing over me to respond to this and (damit I have to stop and go to work). I have been doing very little in my apartment except sleeping (and working my two jobs). I thought I'd get more done after my online class ended. After all, I reasoned, I didn't have to attend to my class reading, posting, researching my paper deadlines. but all I do is sleep. Oh and watch a little TV, then dose on and off. I don't change into sleep clothes. and I awake in my chair with my feeling pain in my jaw from apparently clenching my teeth together. So the dosing isn't relaxing. And the dishes aren't washed. I've decided to put away all dishes except one place setting and just wash after each use.

    I've always enjoyed washing dishes (when I had a window to look out at the sink). My apartment is shaded and low light comes into the interior spaces. So I want to just read and do computer work. But mostly sleep.

    I have vowed to do a little something special each day (not housework) but to decorate. Hang a picture. or start a mosaic project. One thing I know will give me pleasure is to take a roll of film or a used instant camera and have the pictures developed. I have a little extra money now so I can reach into the bag I have that is full of these yet-to-be developed pictures. These date back 10-15 years. I was emotionally numb for at least 10 and financially strained.

    So I can't wait to see these pictures!!