Trying to Find the Way Out.

The boychild trying to amuse me in the morning (because he didn’t take the recycling out again): Shows me his super-expensive (required by the course) graphing calculator, which you can program to do certain functions, pushes a series of buttons and tells me to hit enter: his calculator then tells me it sees dead people. Sigh. Grin. This because last night Calli (the Golden Retriever) seemed to either be scared of her shadow in the entryway or telling me there were ghosts outside the door. Not sure which. Put her to bed so I wouldn’t have to think about it. Then thought about the fact that my protector, the dog, is hiding behind ME. Hmn.

I’m trying to control parts of my life so that the uncontrolled parts don’t feel so vast and empty. In trying to explain yesterday to one class why kids cut themselves (yes, teaching sex ed covers a wide range of topics, including suicide and depression and cutting), I tried to talk about the need for control, and how in some people, it gets messed up. That their need for control is so strong and their own lives are so out of control, that what they choose to control seems crazy to the rest of us (anorexia, bulimia as well). I left school and went and controlled some stuff (refi’d my mortgage). Then went home, where the chaos reigns, and tried to deal. I can control the errands. After that, it’s questionable.

My knee is having major problems. This is not good. I’m not hiking until it stops. I may need to deal with a doctor on this one. It sucks. I hate that the body gets in the way of treating the mind, because hiking and walking treats my mind, the depression, and I’m not going to be able to do that for a while. Not sure how long. Hate this.

Girlchild had her followup back appointment, post-surgery. She’s cleared to start soccer practice and running in two weeks. She was hoping to be cleared yesterday, so she ended up being depressed about that. Mad because I had scheduled it then and not when she would be allowed to play. I don’t think that’s how we planned it, but whatever. So it was a weird day, because I only taught half the day, but I had to get up early and deal with freeway traffic and crap.

Back to that place where it feels like the sky is pressing down on your shoulders, blocking your ability to breathe. It feels like a heavy blanket…ironic, because it is a beautifully sunny day out there, it’ll be in the mid-80s. It’s spring going into summer in Southern California…where depression feels completely out of place, because nature just laughs at you. Not only am I going to fuck your KNEE up, but I’m going to make it a beautiful day! So fuck you. Wow. I see how it is.

I try to pull myself out of these. I was dancing in 6th period to 70s funk (some of the kids know some of it). I graded a bunch of journals when I got back early from the doctor’s appointment. I can’t send my sub home early, so I might as well use that time. My goal was to not have to work last night. Turns out I didn’t have the energy anyway.

I did manage some cutting, about an hour (it’s always about an hour…).

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It’s getting there. The pile in the middle, the to-be-cut pile, is getting noticeably smaller. There’s a lot of big fleshy pieces in there now, which are easier for me to cut (and deal with mentally). For some reason, the small tiny bitchy pieces just depress me. I pick up a piece with a ton of tiny pieces on it and I just feel overwhelmed. But when I pick up a huge piece that probably has just as much complicated cutting going on, it seems more doable. Makes no sense. I haven’t managed to go back to ironing the other one together either. I’m just too tired these days. Ironic. I’m sleeping more. The other side of depression? Sleep instead of wakefulness? Or something else? I’m always having to second-guess what my body is doing. And the brain. What does THIS mean? What did I do to cause this? Blood sugar, sleep, weight issues. All so uncontrollable. Maybe I will have to clean something to make it better in my head.

I enjoy some parts of journal grading. It really is a relief to grade a perfect journal…

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and then some of them are so creative…

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Guess which one was done by a girl and which one was done by a boy. I wish that weren’t so obvious, but it often is. Not always.

I think my mood is connected to something disappointing that happened at school, disappointing because of the kids involved and because I had just talked to them about the three results of bullying in middle and high school: 1. the kid just deals with it and moves on. 2. the kid attempts to or succeeds in killing him or herself. 3. the kid stockpiles guns and comes back to school and kills you for being an asshole. (I don’t use those exact words, but…) And then it doesn’t seem to matter what teachers say, because they still do that shit and consequences still happen. So I already know I have to go to school today and be visibly and verbally disappointed in behaviors that are totally normal in our society (our brains really are fucked-up messes) for reasons of control. Because if you feel like less of a person, then you turn around and make someone else feel worse.

It’s OK, guys. My brain is doing it FOR you. You don’t have to do a thing. I can bully myself.

I will find a way out of this shit. I swear. I don’t want to live in here. I want to live somewhere else. Like out there. Where the sun is shining and the birds are singing. I can hear them; I just can’t find the way out there. Seriously, that was last night’s dream, running around school hallways, trying to find the way out, trying to find my kids (my students). I don’t know what that’s about.

An article about the Quilt National exhibit in San Jose is here.

An article about the Earth Stories exhibit in Michigan is here.

My work is in both, but you can only see mine in the second article.

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