Here In The Mud
Last night, I set my alarm for 4:45 am. I woke up at 5:30, with the alarm blaring. I stumbled out to the kitchen, fixed a pot of tea, headed for the shower, then back to the bedroom to get dressed.
Chaos reigns in the bedroom. Clothes are piled high. The bed is a tangle of sheets. Paths are cut through the coat of dog hair and dust the way deer make paths through a field.
Surveying this, and considering how I can't seem to get enough sleep lately, I was lead to one ineluctable conclusion: I'm depressed.
I hate that.
"Depression," as a former therapist of mine once explained, "is anger misdirected inwards."
Huh. No secret there.
Depression. I hate that. So what does that mean? I get a prescription for one of those wonderful Special Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors? I find a therapist here in Bucks County? Neither prospect is particularly savory.
Depression. That dull grey humour. The will to do anything just slips through your fingers like sand. You're just not up to it. A pretty fair description, evidenced by so many symptoms. My bedroom alone would get me a fairly high dose of Prozac.
Dressed, I walked the dog, then jumped in the jeep and headed to work.
Driving always is helpful to clear my head. And this morning, I was graced with a moment of clarity.
I remembered the conversation I had, sitting in my brother's jacuzzi, with my Spirit Guide. All those months ago. My Spirit Guide, Wolf, described me as being in a mud hole. A comfy mudhole, but a mudhole nonetheless.
That's it exactly.
Not to say that there isn't a neurochemical component of what's going on with me, but there's an important spiritual aspect here, too. Y'see, there I am in the mud hole. And although I won't be here forever, I'll be here for the forseeable future.
So. Keep my room neat and tidy? For what or whom exactly? If I knew it would be seen by eyes other than mine and my father's, I'd get things in ship shape in a jiffy. But that's unlikely.
Deeper. Deeper into the mud.
Clean out the garage! Unpack all those boxes! Uh huh. And the value--other than the kinesthetics of that--would be what exactly?
My gym-going is sporadic. Always some excuse. The broken ankle. The spasms in my back. The long day at work. Responsibilities at home. The time between bouts of Going To The Gym grows longer and longer. But c'mon, for what or for whom am I striving against the steel? As the acting student asks when told to do an improv of being a llama, "What's my motivation here?"
And SM. Y'unnerstan', SM for me is not just about getting my rocks off. It's a spiritual path. It's how I discover myself, my quest for excellence in myself, my renewing spring of connection and intimacy. And it just seems to have fallen by the wayside. It just seems that there's too much to negotiate... sifting the wheat from the chafe on the internet, finding a place to play, packing up the gear bag, driving the inevitable hour-and-a-half... it's all just so daunting. And so I don't look for opportunities, and often enough, bow out of opportunities that present themselves.
Deeper. Deeper. Deeper.
But here's the thing: awareness of the state of my soul was like a pint of blood. The grace of clarity. "Now I see," said the blind man.
Yeah, I'm in the mud hole. Living in my childhood bedroom. Severely reduced economic circumstances. Blah-diddy-blah-blah-blah. And those circumstances aren't going to change.
And whereas a year ago I was juggling so much, and making sure I never had dirty dishes in the sink or an unmade bed that didn't contain me, it's not the worst thing in the world. Take this time to relax my standards. Go gentler on myself.
But in some respects--in very small bites--I can put the brakes on this downward (Deeper) trend.
What can I do? What can I do without biting off too much, and just getting frustrated and... well... depressed?
Number One: Once a month. Once a month. Do something SM-wise once a month. Doesn't have to be a big deal. Just making it once a month to check in on the Philadelphia Bondage Club. Take a chance on some local guy, perhaps a novice (I'm good with novices!). Once a month. If you can't go for quantity, go for quality.
Number Two: Weld something! Okay, that's complicated. Clean out the garage. Get together the financial wherewithal to buy a welding machine and an oxy-feul set up. Clean out the garage. Sell stuff. Have a yard sale. Get rid of stuff. I won't need it for the immediate future. I can do that. I can take that on.
Number Three: Keep it clean. Spend an hour every weekend doing housecleaning. Nothing wrong with that. Nothing wrong with that at all. There's no good reason not to.
Number Four: Get out and enjoy Bucks County. Take long walks with Faithful Companion. Go see a movie at the acclaimed County Theater in Doylestown.
Number Five: Show a little gumption at work! Okay, so Hardware is a pitcher of spit. So what. I'm learning a trade. I'm learning. Stretch. Bend. Work. Put your stamp on it.
And that's plenty.
"Hey! What are you doing down there in that mud hole?"
"The breaststroke, Baby! I'm doin' the breast stroke."