car washes, romantic comedies, & other weekend thoughts

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So I’m sitting here in a Starbucks in Long Beach on a Sunday, trying to make my brain focus so that I can finish up a couple of lingering client issues, and I’m really just coming back to the same thing again & again: the thought that I hate having clients.

Let me be clear: I don’t hate my clients. I’ve actually weeded those clients out, the ones that make me want to tear my hair out & scream. The non-Museum!Co clients I have at the moment are either people I actually know, & one that was referred over to me by a friend. And the work that presently needs to be done isn’t even all that hard, just things that need to be plodded through to get to the next stage of the project, and making myself do that is creating the same reaction as trying to get a vegetable-averse toddler to eat his brussel sprouts.
I have the clearest memory of being a kid on Long Island & my mom telling me I wasn’t leaving the table until I had eaten all of my brussel sprouts. It just happened to be the night of the neighborhood fire drill, & luckily for me the neighborhood alarm went off, so we all had to leave the house & go stand in the street, rah rah. Well on the way out I grabbed my brussel sprouts and ditched them in the hedge as I went by. Some might call that trickery, but due the biodegradable properties of brussel sprouts, I prefer to think of it as composting at an early age.

I’m just having this horrible apathy towards work of any kind at the moment – not a good thing for any self-employed freelancer. That’s not to say I don’t have ideas and ambitions, just that I’m a bit burnt out on actually doing things about them, so I’m stuck in this same cycle of
panic -> work furiously -> finish -> fall over -> avoid because I’m burnt out again -> panic
… rinse & repeat as needed.

It just seems like there’s so much work, & so much that needs to be done, & while things are so much better than they were this time last year, I can’t help but wonder when I’ll get to the point where I can just… leave everything behind for a little while. Even this weekend, where I’m down in Long Beach house sitting at the Menagerie, I was doing practice at Beach!Boathouse & going grocery shopping for myself, & all I could think was, “I should be working. There’s stuff that’s overdue, I need to work on that.”

I feel like my time management sucks, & that while I know what I should be doing, actually making myself get it done is an entirely different matter. And I just have to power through & get it done, & I’ll have my time back, but here I am, waiting for the neighborhood fire alarm so I can ditch my brussel sprouts.

Simon & Schuster I Know I Am But What Are You

I dunno. I know that my life isn’t a horrid pit of despair. I recognize that. And while I still maintain that a lot of garbage has been cleared out over the last year, I suppose it’s like being at the point of moving where you’ve thrown out as much as you can, have packed up a bunch of boxes, and all you can do it look around & see how much is left to do, & the thought of having to do it all alone just makes you want to sit down & cry.

I think more than anything lately, it’s the “alone” part of that which makes me tired the most. Because when I make plans, I do so with the given that I’ll be doing everything myself & I have to accomplish it all alone, and that takes… well it requires a lot of energy, which I don’t always have.

I have… well thanks to my family I have huge trust issues, and I tend to be solitary to begin with, something that’s only become more compounded over the last few years. I wonder sometimes if the fact that I don’t have any real roots or connections to anything is what makes people think it’s all right to try to roll me or make me a target when they need a scapegoat. If they think they can treat me as their disposable punching bag because I appear to be on my own and thus vulnerable. Because that seems to happen quite often, and then everyone acts surprised to find out that alone I might be, but available to be taken advantage of I most certainly am not.

The problem being that after everything is said & done, I may be able to maintain my position, and I can pay my bills, and while in every secular sense, I come out okay, but when it’s all over, everybody else has each other & their lives, & their friends. Meanwhile, I’m the one that ends up alone, and the only guy that wants to spend time with me is a 19-lb puggle who, while indeed ridiculously cute, is not exactly what I’m looking for in terms of a fulfilling relationship.

But you tell yourself to buck up. You talk to like-minded friends & remind yourselves that life is not about having a boyfriend, that you’re a liberated modern woman, and that we need to let go of the idea of happily every after, because as I once put it, “We’ve all been sold on the fucking lie.” But everyone around you seems to have a new boyfriend, or getting married, or having babies, and while you have a perfectly good career & life and you can do & know many, many awesome things, the world just occasionally appears to be populated by a swath of seemingly blissful couples wandering around having lovely weekends while you sit in a Starbucks on a Sunday reading about tunnel car washes so that you can write copy & integrate a new section into a client’s site.

On an intellectual level, I know it’s silly. The pragmatic portion of my brain that’s been functioning to ensure self-preservation since approximately age 4 when my sister called in a fake fire & blamed it on me knows that it’s not true, that everyone else is not full of delight & bliss about their lives, and that having a significant other doesn’t guarantee happiness, if for no other reason than it would seem that science has actually proven that even when you’re in a relationship, romantic comedies are still ruining your life, so maybe we should all just blame Katherine Heigl for our crappy existences and move on.

But the emotional part of me… I dunno. I think it’s harder in summer when everyone is going on vacations, & enjoying themselves, and I get to… stay here. And work. Because that’s what I do. And I don’t want to deal with anything right now, but I know I need to. And I’m just kind of having a moment. Because while life is a constant series of change, but you just can’t help but wonder if this aspect of your existence will always be the same.

However, none of this really changes the original issue at hand here – me procrastinating from doing work, and I’d best get on that, because based on the text messages, Loki is rather chuffed that I took advantage of the Menagerie’s Roku box to start to watch Parks & Recreation, so I need to finish things up so we can talk about the adorkability of Amy Poehler, and honestly? I’m kind of curious to see who’s going to be next to fall into that damn pit.

Shelter – Ray LaMontagne
Trouble - Ray LaMontagne

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  • Kate

    “all I could think was, “I should be working. There’s stuff that’s overdue, I need to work on that.”
    I feel like my time management sucks, & that while I know what I should be doing, actually making myself get it done is an entirely different matter. ”

    …this. This is, like, every day of my life. I managed to get a TON of stuff that I’ve been putting off done this weekend and I’m STILL feeling like I’m behind and for no good reason.

    I’ve decided that I can get a lot more done in a day than I have been, and I’m planning to attempt to Six Sigma my life to do it. We’ll see how that works.

  • Adri

    {{{hugs}}} The rest is either too much or too little to say.

  • Anya

    Wow. You know, you’re getting in touch with your feelings and that skeers me. Stop. Procrastinate a bit on the client work. Take a breath. Then another. Look at what you’ve achieved in your life, and don’t measure what you DON’T have.

    Oh. And ease up on the estrogen. Nasty stuff that.

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