Personal Healing: Contact

Saturday, October 16, 2010

I am theoretically happy.
I say theoretically because it sometimes feels like I am in a vacuum, all light and sound collapsing around me. I am holding in all the feelings that I've made myself too busy to feel, and sometimes things implode without me noticing it.
I have had mild depressive episodes since I was a teenager and most of them were related to loneliness and apathy. I solved them then by finding more faith in God and religion or by busying myself to the point that I could ignore the feelings until they went away. I started to restructure my life to be more accepting of myself - my body, my likes and dislikes - and the depression began to fade away. It would come as blips in the radar, anomalies that could be explained away as they came up.
But moving to NYC has been hard on everything. Though I would reward myself for my independence, I would also feel like I was slipping away from something. I was losing contact. I am a social person by nature, but my sociability didn't make me happier. It didn't make me feel like I was doing any good. I was drowning in shallow water, and I didn't know anyone who could help me out.
Contact. The all-important necessity that a lot of New Yorkers don't get. The manufactured contact between my long distance boyfriend and myself was great, but it was still something that neither of us could touch. I had contact with a few friends, but most of the ones I could communicate deeply with were far away. And casual contact here means attending the same events and then parting ways, no follow-up date or growing partnership.
And sometimes I blame myself for this - why didn't I call her again or send more messages? Meanwhile, rather than proactively seeking ties and friendships, I slipped into more of my delusions; working and academics were what I was here for mainly, right? I was dunking my head in without even realizing it.
Is this what it feels like to be an adult? Perhaps that is the cold reality that I need to swallow, the water that I'm drowning in, this transition between youth and adult. But I still hold on to the hope that human contact is not so hard to achieve, that it is still lurking out there somewhere.
I don't think that this is my constant reality, this depression that dogs at me sometimes. But, on the rare occasion when I am yearning for something more than a club meeting or a casual conversation before class, it is sometimes hard to put that in perspective. I think of all the lonely things: how my boyfriend is 3000 miles away, how I won't get to hang out in Washington till summer, how I wish I had a pet to hold or something. It's a frustrating thing to have little motivation because it turns into a cycle of negative thoughts and actions. You're not helping yourself during this.
Recently, life in the city has been hard for this reason. I have to break my own cycles and get some help, but it's an exercise in positivity when I don't feel I have any. It's a weird charade. But I have to keep trying.

*This post was not meant to bother anybody or invite them to worry about my mental state. I think that most people get sad sometimes, and this is just my method of expressing it rather than holding it in. If you would like to chat with me about it, please send me an email or a private message on Facebook. Thanks for your consideration.