Category Archives: depression

dying and living and sleeping and waking

i feel as if my soul is dying a slow painful death and taking my body down with it. or vice versa. either way, i’m dying a slow painful death, or at least it feels that way monday through friday, from approximately 8am to 430pm.

i remember about a year ago, i was so happy to have gotten this position with my current employer. this current position started out paying more than what i earned at the last library i worked at, plus i thought it would build on the foundation i had created at the other job.  and truthfully, in some ways it has. i have learned a lot at this job, especially in areas of web development, and the intricacies of interlibrary loan and copyright law. this knowledge is something i may be able to take with me wherever i go next. (and i am going, somewhere, but that will be the subject of another post.)

and yet, today my work consisted of comparing a printed out list with the contents of a database. basically, this is bullshit work, as far as i’m concerned. much of the work i do in this position is bullshit work. i spend most of my days moving bytes of ‘info’ from one computer to another, in an ‘industry’ i’m feeling less and less respect for with each day that goes by.

there is so much real work to be done in the world, and i’m feeling as though my soul and mind are wasting away. just today i finished reading derrick jensen’s dreams, which is an amazing, amazing book,  and has made one hell of an impression on my psyche. one thing this book has inadvertently done is made glaringly obvious to me all the ways in which my job, and current way of life, are 1. bullshit,  2. pointless, and 3. evil. yes, evil. the building i work in is located next to, and affiliated with, a vivisection lab. plus, there’s this whole morality, or lack of, in the medical-pharmaceutical industry, a morality that revolves around little more than making money. it seems the purpose of the medical-pharmaceutical industry is not to get people healthy, but to keep them sick yet somewhat functional, and dependent on the industry. sadly, the work i do in an academic medical library supports this paradigm.

meanwhile, this country is literally on the verge of financial collapse, and this planet is on the verge of a far worse collapse. if it isn’t too late, i want to do something about the latter, at least in my little corner of the world, but am not doing a damn thing, other than going to and from my little cubicle every day like a good little serf. other than the plants in my cubicle, the closest i am to nature most work days is the contact made with all the paper i waste (although we do recycle – what good little stewards of the planet we are), paper that used to be in a forest somewhere. as of now, i’m still contributing to the problem (if you could call the planet dying simply a ‘problem’), and i want to do something different from that. i want something where i’m giving back instead of calling myself environmentally conscious while working a job that is in conflict with my soul, just so i don’t have to worry so much about keeping a roof over my head and sallie mae off my back. dreams has touched off an awakening in me where i want to work towards what is important and real. and these are all things i’ve thought about before, but jensen’s book about intangibles has shown me what is real and necessary and urgent. i won’t go into all that now because i do plan to write a fitting review of dreams sometime in the next couple of weeks. for now,  i’ll just say that this book is something of a catalyst for me and the upcoming changes i’m planning to make in my life. yes, i’ve known all along that collapse is imminent, and even if it isn’t ‘imminent’, it is going to happen probably in my lifetime (which i guess would make it somewhat imminent), and sooner would be better than later. it’s helped me to realize that maybe now is the time for me to extricate myself from this system, which i am in the slow process of doing. (also, more thoughts on this extrication in future posts.)

are you happy with the work you do (whether it’s paid or unpaid)? are you contributing to the demise of this planet or to the demise of civilization? (those ideas are opposites, believe it or not.) whom do you serve, Life or Death?

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crazy like an introvert

maybe i’m not a borderline aspie. maybe i’m just really really introverted. i’ve kinda known this all along, but sometimes it helps seeing something in print that explains what i’ve already known. i’ve had spontaneous moments in my life, but i much prefer planning things out in advance. this article linked to below says that’s okay and is in fact *normal*, but you wouldn’t know it from the ongoing cacophony that is american culture.

on the other hand, on occasion i do have difficulty with eye contact and knowing what to say next, so there is a little aspie in me. but not enough to matter so much, because i think i’ve had the ups and downs experienced by most people, and while social anxiety may slow me down a bit, ultimately it doesn’t get in the way of me eventually having the experience i seek (whatever that may be). so, if i must be labeled, i’m an introvert with very mild aspie tendencies.

revenge of the introvert (from psychology today magazine)

update: so, after i posted this entry, i did some more looking around on the topic of introversion. i was completely unaware that being an introvert is actually considered a mental health issue. the american psychiatric association is actually considering adding introversion to the next edition of their diagnostic and statistical manual, which basically would make introversion a symptom of certain mental illness. talk about some crazy shit. the definition used in the DSM-5 is not indicative of a typical introvert; the symptoms listed here are more for someone who is depressed. yes, of course there are introverts who are depressed, just as there are depressed extroverts who manage to hide their sorrow by using their personalities as masks. however, there are plenty of people who are perfectly fine being introverts. introversion is nothing more than thinking before you speak, planning out your next move instead of acting rashly, enjoying your own company instead of needing to either entertain or be entertained. there is nothing wrong with us because we don’t dance on the table with the lampshade on our head at every party. there is nothing wrong with us because we don’t blurt out the first thing that comes to mind. if the APA wants to go this route, i would think that extroversion should be included in the DSM-5 as well. a lot of people who are actually introverts use extroversion as a mask because they think they need to in order to get by in this society. how healthy is it to pretend to be something you’re not?