Preface: I haven’t left my room for over 24 hours, because Amazon/the courier they use can’t seem to figure out how to get a package from point A (the warehouse) to point B (my flat) in the time indicated (yesterday). SERIOUSLY AMAZON, SORT THIS SHIT OUT. It’s having an effect on my mental health.
Here’s what happened after I hit ‘publish’ on yesterday’s post: I kinda freaked out.
Having written a blog post signified the end of my “work day”, and I was well ahead of schedule. “Great!” I thought. I was pleased that not only had I written a blog post, but I had also sat down and played with my music software earlier in the day. I now have a daily routine (!!) and am settling nicely into the process of recovery. Or so I allowed myself to believe.
Cue a quick visit to the timesuck that is Facebook; an entirely appropriate end-of-work-day browsing destination.
Among the nonsense on my timeline, a “friend” shared a link (I know her, but to say we are friends is a bit of a stretch) to a story that features herself, among a handful of other “top Canadian business women” talking about whisky. I would’ve never thought her a whisky drinker so at this point I am genuinely curious and click. Everything is fine up until I start reading.
I didn’t freak out because the article was whisky-related (it was basically an advertorial and not very interesting). I freaked out at the description of my friend.
Wait a second, she has a senior communications role for a massive company?! She is a good five years my junior, and didn’t even study communications. OH.MY.GOD. Her dress costs over $2,000?!
Now, the thing to keep in mind is that somewhere between finishing yesterday’s blog post and reading this article I was thinking about how annoyed I was that I wouldn’t be able to leave the flat to complete some mystery shopping assignments I need to do so I can afford to buy groceries because I’m on state benefits.
I was also thinking about how I had a massive cheese craving, but have already gone over my weekly grocery budget so would have to go without cheese.
These two thoughts, occurring just before spotting my friend in a $2,000 dress, brought my reality into sharp focus very quickly. I could suddenly see where my life was at, and it wasn’t pretty.
I am almost 40, and my top concern is mystery shopping and buying cheese. WTF.
A wave of panic washed over me and I thought “Hahaha! Ok, joke’s over! Time to move back into the flat with Mrs. M and go back to the way life was because sitting here and realising just how badly I seem to have failed at life itself is massively uncomfortable!”
The last bit I didn’t actually think at the time, but I know that was part of it.
Then of course, I realised that this wasn’t a joke. Mrs. M isn’t waiting with open arms for me to return to the flat and I still can’t afford cheese. This really is my life right now.
So many things snapped into focus: My finances? A total ruin. My career? What career?! And Mrs. M!!! (heart breaks all over again)…
WHAT HAVE I DONE?!
Did I misplace my ambition or did it simply give up and walk away while I was passed out on the couch?
How the hell did I end up 37, completely broke, jobless, living on my own and tentatively single?!
Oh that’s right, by drinking enough vodka to tranquilise a rhino on a daily basis. D’uh.
I’m not sure why seeing my friend in a $2,000 dress had such a profound effect. I don’t want or need a $2,000 dress in my life, but it would be nice to have the option. It would be even nicer to afford some basic cheddar.
Maybe the simple act of acknowledging that I need to face my feelings allowed just a tiny droplet of harsh reality to seep through my defensive walls. Scary to think how much more will have to break through those enormous emotional dams, but I’m ready.
For now, I will not wallow in self-pity. Yes, the reality bitch-slap hurt but it’s also woken me up. I am not happy with the way things are or where I am. This is a better place to be than where I was before this whole dress fiasco, which was in total denial of the reality of my situation.
I also I know I have to linger here awhile. A few months maybe? I don’t know. I have to process, heal…and also figure out where the hell I am going, metaphorically speaking. Get the help I need to get back on track emotionally, financially, career-wise (I don’t dare hope about anything else just yet).
Have I said this before? I’m sure I mean it. I mean it even more today. Saying and doing though…two very different things. I’m a lot closer to ‘doing’ than I’ve ever been.
Also, no Facebook for me fo