After a Very Bad Night, I come home at 2 am to find two post-its attached to my door. "Chelsea - if you still don't feel like sleeping, help yourself to the ice cream in the freezer!" "John bought if for me! But I don't want to eat it all. -Natalie" Honestly. We may not be the best of friends like Tuey and her roommate, but I lucked out with Natalie. We're both raised to be polite and friendly, so even if we barely have anything in common, we take care of each other. I tell her to dump her boyfriend, she offers me ice cream when I can't sleep. Aww.
About the Very Bad Night, though. Winter's coming. I didn't realize it before, I was too caught up in all the pretty trees, kicking leaves while walking to class, feeling invigorated while breathing the sharp air and patting my rosy, cold cheeks. But tonight it hit, full force. Winter's coming. And with it comes what I now realize is seasonal depression, something I've been dealing with unknowingly for the last three years. It never feels so bad that I need to do anything about it - until last winter, toward the end, when I begged my dad to help me find a therapist. It didn't work - by the time things came together, it was spring and I'd convinced myself I'd been in a rut, anxious to leave home and start school in Bellingham. Here I am! .. So why is it worse than before? I'm not homesick - I don't miss my old life. I miss friends, naturally. RJ, Chanel, Tom. I wish they could all be here with me, but I'd never give up what I have to be with them again.
No, it's not homesickness. It's solitude. I said earlier I've been reading 100 Years of Solitude, and maybe it's that book that brought it on. I've realized that from day one, ever since I was born into the family my parents made, I was going to struggle with connecting to people. My parents are quiet, reserved people. I am too. But for years and years I've tried to fight it, to get out and enjoy life. To laugh full force and scream with joy, to see someone I know and run and jump and hug them, to do a little dance as I walk because life is so wonderful. I want to do all these things, but apathy and weariness drags me down. When the day starts, the first thing I do is categorize everything that needs to be done, how much time it's going to take me, what I should do when I'm in-between tasks. What kind of day is that? Setting out a schedule that I follow, almost without fail, before I've even brushed my teeth? There are small moments when it's not so bad. Today I walked back from class by a different route - I cut behind Fairhaven and took the backroad, then wandered through "The Wilds", an untamed garden between the dorms. But these little things aren't enough at the end of the day, when I check off that mental list I made in the morning. I'm still overweight, I'm still self-analytical (good luck ever fighting that one off!), I'm still spend the majority of my day alone, I'm not learning how to speak spanish at all, and because I've joined the sailing team and started donating plasma, I don't have time to explore the town/campus until the weekend. That's what I want to do most, really. Walk to Bellingham. Raid the library again, find the art exhibits, the parks, the statues (if there are any?). Jessica and Elaina both have the same interests, but our schedules conflict so much that the best I can usually get is a quick lunch between classes. No, I lied. I see them sporadically. Either all day for a week, or not at all. (Until today, I hadn't seen Jessica since Thursday. At least that's what she says. I honestly don't remember anything past Tuesday.)
(my roommate's fighting with her blankets in her sleep. she's adorable!)
I've reached the point in this post where I don't have any interest in what I'm saying anymore. I've bitched and complained enough. Basically, I worry constantly that I'm spending too much time on my own.
Tonight was a Very Bad Night, sure, but now that I've calmed down more, it doesn't seem so bad. It was earlier, before I fell asleep, that hurt. I crashed at 8 and slept for 4 hours, woke up at midnight groggy but energized at the same time. I walked to Haggen, did some grocery shopping, then crossed the street to IHOP. A crazy guy was singing oldies with the waitresses while I drank coffee and read The Rape of Nanking. Walking home wasn't so hot, but now that I've had time to sit, think, relax a little bit... So what if I did it all by myself? It was fun. I have the memory, even if there's no one to share it with.