The state of my February state.
I think what people sometimes don’t get about seasonal affective disorder is that it’s not like I’m just lying in bed, alternately weeping and stuffing my face with Entenmann’s donuts, utterly immobilized by despair.
Not even close.
It’s more like… have you ever had the flu or a really bad cold that just completely knocks you out for a couple of days—and then when you’re well enough to get back to work or school, you feel… off somehow, like you’re two steps behind and everything suddenly got twice as hard to do?
That’s maybe a bit more like it.
My creativity—whether for writing or for cooking—is at its lowest ebb. I get a couple good hours per day in which to do some work, and which has to be prioritized immediately: school work? freelance work? blogging? which of these needs to get done now—because this is all I’m going to get done today…
And yet, even with all this in mind, this February has actually been pretty good. I’ve finally found a way to not listen (more often than not, anyway) to the jerkwad who lives in the back of my brain—my anti-Stuart Smalley—who says shit like, I don’t know who you think you’re kidding because you’re definitely not good enough or smart enough. oh, and P.S.? people don’t like you. I think thanks in large part to that new superpower, I’ve resumed working on a side project that’s been lurking in the recesses of my laptop. I’ve also got two papers to write in the next week or so, but I’m not feeling particularly overwhelmed by that, either.
And just ten days left in February? I’ll take it.
This is your brain. This is your brain on January.
[SCENE: My bedroom. 12:10AM. Mid-winter.]
My brain: I think you need to pee.
Me: No, I don’t. I just did and now I’m trying to go to sleep.
Brain: I think you do, though.
Me: No. I do not. Goodnight.
Brain: If you say so. [dramatic sigh] This pillow sucks. It’s too flat. You should get another one. Oh, I know! You should buy one the next time you go to IKEA.
Me: Yeah, maybe.
Brain: And while you’re there, you should remember to get a couple of bowls to replace the ones that chipped. Remember that, okay? New bowls. IKEA. New bowls when you’re at IKEA. IKEA bowls. Don’t forget.
Brain: Oh, and maybe get some fabric too! You should replace the bag you made out of IKEA fabric a couple years back. It was cute but now it’s starting to look a little beat. The top of the strap is all faded from the sun. Isn’t that funny? The way it’s all faded in just that one spot. Huh. Or! Maybe you should just get a new messenger bag from Manhattan Portage — but in what color? You have a green coat and a navy one and then sometimes you wear that red jacket in the spring, so probably not in any of those colors. Maybe black, but black is so drab plus OMG cat hairrr!
Brain: Oh, yeah! Good idea! Gray would be great. I still think you should make a new bag, though, too, for the summertime. Something cute, but not too big because you don’t need to carry that much stuff when you’re not going to class. But what KIND of bag? You should really use that super-cute pink fabric you’ve got laying around and make a bag with that —
Me: [weakly] oh god, please shut up.
Brain: — not that you can even GET to your sewing machine. I mean, have you seen that living room? OMG WHAT A WRECK. I mean, I just can’t believe how lazy you are! You need to clean! Tomorrow! Like, as soon as you get up! In fact, you should get up extra early to get a head start! It’s totally disgusting out there! What a slob you are!
Me: JESUS CHRIST SHUT UP SHUT UP SHUT UP I AM TRYING TO SLEEP SO SHUT UP NOW
Me: Thank you.
Brain: [quietly] You do actually kinda need to pee, though.
Me: Yeah, okay, I do.
[exits room toward bathroom]
Kristen to Old Man Winter: Drop Dead
I am so fucking tired of winter.
An entire February of cold, grey, depressing days, not even broken up by any real snowfall, has exhausted my patience with winter. Start up the daffodils and robins already, because I am so done with all this wintery shit.
So much so, I went out of my way to cook something without local, seasonal ingredients and instead bought two of my favorite spring vegetables — snow peas and asparagus — from FreshDirect to make this:
I call it Hurry The Fuck Up Already Springtime Pasta.
Not an especially inspired name, but it gets the point across.