(Will this become a weekly thing now? Writing a new blog post every week?)
It hit me: the looming anguish that is affecting many because of the pandemic. Not that it hasn’t hit me before, but I am openly admitting this, on my blog. I am not okay. And I will let the record show…
Four weeks into grad school, and I struggle to groove back into academic mode, the one I had managed to build up with enthusiasm a year ago. Of course, it was a much different time, where I could garner energy from being inside a library, surrounded by books, with queued actions to buy coffee from my favorite deli, visit my program director in their office before my class, and walk in to the classroom 15 minutes early to set up my work station. In tow, I would have a tote full of freshly bought books from a bookstore I decided to visit in the morning, as a souvenir that I went there and will cherish the memories of small bookshops in downtown Manhattan. There was a time when I was actually enjoying a stable routine, after years of having nothing close to stability… (That story, I will save for another time~)
This was a fear I had foreseen last semester (Fall 2020), which led me to take LOA. I had hoped that by this time, I could fall back into the academic mode, to be able to read PDFs and books, to write my analysis of the material, to participate in discussion at least once, if I felt compelled to comment. But I can’t. I’m unable to.
One thing I had gathered from the readings in my classes, with regards to archival research: we all leave traces of our lives through pieces of writing. In this day & age, it is digital and readily available online, for many to read.
Let this be my evidence for future readers.
I am not okay and have not been okay. But I managed to keep myself afloat by focusing on other independent projects that gave me “something to do” — but they actually kept me from falling into greater pits of despair because I need writing in my life. That has been a constant for more almost two decades now.
My difficulty in concentration is a mix of not being in a suitable environment to do work and experiencing mental health issues that I’m unable to disclose nor elaborate to anyone because I lack the resources to properly talk about it… So all I have, for now, is writing.
There are days that remind me of feeling trapped. Some reminders of “what could’ve been, had this never happened” (not just the pandemic, but other life occurrences that drastically changed me). The monotony of life I am currently living is making me question who I am, at times, and it is concerning. But there is no one whom I can talk to about this without raising alarms that could potentially veer me away from my important work, which is to tell story and to write.
And that’s all I can manage to say here. I’m just hoping to find the spark that will reinvigorate me to do the work I enjoy again.