Monday, May 22, 2006

Analyzing the funk

If you're tired of listening to me whine, feel free to move on.

I'm calling it the funk instead of full-blown depression because I think that's the best way to define it. I think this funk definitely has a lot in common with a bad cold. There are chemical and/or hormonal causes, but like a cold, the symptoms can be exacerbated by external forces. So, for example, when you have a cold, you generally try to rest, drink lots of fluids, and keep the nostrils and head clear. If you fail to do those things, the cold will still go away eventually (unless it becomes pneumonia, but let's not go there), but it will last longer than it would if you had taken care of yourself.

I believe I have a trifecta (or quadfecta, is that a word?) of crap that's making this funk thing last. I'm just going to put it out there and look at it for a minute:
  1. Lots of work to do at work. I'm a week away from the summer program and regular work isn't going away any time soon, so it's kind of piled on right now. As someone said over at Bitch, Ph.D.'s, it's like salt in the wound every time someone says, "So, are things slowing down for you now?" or "What are you doing for the summer?" I know they don't mean anything by it, but it pisses me off, especially when it comes from people who are spending their summers in exotic locations.
  2. Unbloggable crap. If it's unbloggable, you know it's really crappy. I'm working to get a handle on this.
  3. Dissertation. Progress is slow. I have not been motivated to work on it much and life keeps getting in the way.
  4. Pile on that two kids' birthdays, a visit from Mr. Geeky's dad while Mr. Geeky is away and Mr. Geeky being away for quite a bit in the next few weeks and you can almost feel the knots in my back.
I think my main reason for feeling funky about all of this is 1) the sheer volume and 2) the lack of control I feel over all of it. Every time I try to take control, I feel even less in control. Something else happens or I become indecisive whatever. I also feel like I can't let any of this go. I could just let the dissertation go for a couple of weeks, but I feel like if I do, I'll fail, even though I keep telling myself (and others) that it would be okay if I have to file an extension for one more semester. I'd just feel better if I could do something on it.* I wish I had the ability some people have to just not worry about stuff. Mr. Geeky has this ability and it kills me. He just plows through when things get tough and the things he can't control, he just doesn't worry about. Not so with me. I have to project worst case scenerios far into the future. E.G. if the kids' birthdays don't get planned, not only will the neighborhood moms call me names behind my back, but the kids will be scarred for life and when they're 25, I'll call them on their birthdays and they'll say, "Well, at least it's not like the time you did nothing." Sigh.

Another thing I've been thinking about in relation to this funk I'm in is that I just don't want to be responsible for anything at home right now. I don't want to be the one thinking about the laundry and the meals and the kids' schedules and all the other nit-picky details that mostly go unnoticed. I want to be able to focus on dealing with that list and knock it out.

And also, like having a cold, I want someone to come take care of me. I want someone to bring me chicken soup and cover me in a blanket and let me watch bad tv for hours on end. It's times like these when I realize that being a grown up sucks.

*After writing this and reading it over, I think I am going to let the dissertation go for the next few days, until Mr. Geeky gets back. I'm also planning to take Friday off and of course, I have Monday off, so maybe those two things will get me back on track.