Stuff and Nonsense


3.23.2020

Walkies at the End of the World

Like many at home during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic, I've taken to walking around the quiet neighborhoods of my new city, trying to soothe my anxious mind with fresh air and green things. Here in Connecticut, Winter 2020 felt like the winter that never was. Temperatures only dipped below freezing a handful of times and snowfall was below normal. Instead, everything was gray, gray, gray all the time as if winter was somehow stuck on pause. It is wonderful to finally see the spring bulbs and shrubs bursting into bloom.

Forsythia

Galanthus

Scilla

3.20.2020

My Library Is Closing & I Can't Stop Thinking About My To-Do List

My library will close to staff at 8 AM Monday. This is a good, sensible decision and I will be paid for the duration (unions, hooray) I am at home. Can't I be happy? Why can't I be happy?

Because half the local history room is currently spread around the mezzanine in carts and the prohibition on working means my inability to restore everything to rights is like a mental itch I can’t scratch. I can feel myself feeling anxious about the room’s door being left open indefinitely.

Planning and organization, those are two of the tools that allow me to live with Anxiety Brain in this mad, bad civilization of ours. Where once planning was a terrible side effect of Anxiety Brain (I constantly planned for every eventuality without even realizing I did), planning linked with organization helps me to live a life largely unencumbered by unnecessary anxieties. (Meds also help).

But now, the open door. The partially cleaned shelves. The sticky notes. None of it can be dealt with for (what will hopefully only be) weeks. I had a plan. I was organized in my approach to completing it, but my timeline shifted abruptly, making it impossible to complete the plan. Now Anxiety Brain is fretting.

When Anxiety Brain frets about a thing, it starts to notice other things to fret about and then all the fretting comes together like layers of nacre on a grain of sand to make a terrible, irregular pearl of ugh that just rattles away in my brain. It’s not a fun time.

I’m going to need to meditate on this. Maybe, attempt to distract my brain with plans for the garden. And, of course, discuss tweaking my meds with my therapist and doctor.