The good news: I’ve been offered CBT on the NHS. I hope to be able to focus on my low self-esteem, as I think that might have a knock-on effect on both the depression and the social anxiety.
The bad news: I didn’t do any real work today, job hunting or interview preparation. I did about two minutes of interview preparation and that was it. I tried to get off the computer a bit (see below for more Twitter angst), but the novel I’m reading is The Transmigration of Timothy Archer by Philip K. Dick and is… not the best thing to read when depressed. The book is about the narrator looking back at her life with her ex-husband, his father, the Bishop of California (who loses his faith) and the father’s mistress, who are all now dead, one or two from suicide. It is actually a very moving book, and actually quite funny in parts, but I probably should not have started re-reading it, but I don’t like giving up on books. I guess the thing to do now is to read the rest of it really fast and move on to some of the books I’m going to get for Chanukah. To be honest, I’m probably not in the mood to read much at the moment anyway, just from depressive lack of concentration and motivation, and the fact that the outside world is wintry and winding down for the winter holidays.
I should really steer clear of Twitter. I get annoyed about political stuff even if I don’t particularly agree with what’s being attacked (why? I don’t know. I dislike argument for reasons rooted in my childhood and I have a lot of baggage about contemporary politics in general because of antisemitism), and the Doctor Who stuff is just… well, I clearly don’t watch the programme the same way most modern fans do. I don’t use the same vocabulary either (literally).
To be honest, Twitter was never going to be a good match for me. The word limit means it’s mostly used for silly jokes and angry rants. I’m not sure how to engage more with contemporary fandom without it, though. I’m nervous of joining an online forum for fear of losing my entire life if I go down that particular rabbit hole (particularly as I’m thinking of trying to stay off the computer more) and I’m not sure how different it would be to Twitter, except that political stuff would be off-topic.
It would be good to have some more social contact, preferably some that isn’t mental health/autism-based. To be honest, I probably need more real-world/local friends. It would be good if I could be friendlier with people from shul/shiur (synagogue/religious class). I think a couple of people like me on some level, but I get scared to open up and I don’t know how to hold conversations.
I think I’m basically looking for friends. That’s why I procrastinate online, on Twitter and so on. I’m looking for someone who says something that really speaks to me, in my confused uniqueness. But I mostly just find anger and hatred online. I don’t really know what I would find in the real world (shul, shiur), because I don’t really have the courage to open up enough to make real friends. To be honest, most of the time I don’t have the courage to speak to other people at all.
I feel terrible today. Just lonely and alone (not the same thing) and depressed and despairing and drained, with occasional bursts of anxiety. I just feel fundamentally weird and unlovable. You can be lonely even in a house with other people. I feel fragile and vulnerable and unable to function.
Alternatively: why is the world so angry? Why won’t anyone just listen?
I feel sure that this week is going to be full of embarrassment, first at my job interview on Wednesday, which I feel sure that I’m going to mess up, whether through poor preparation or anxiety (I’m very worried I’m going to shake visibly during my presentation, as lately I can’t seem to talk to people at work without shaking, or nearly shaking), then at my autism screening, which I feel sure is going to end with being told I’m not autistic (and, implicitly, why do I keep fantasising that I’m autistic? Which sounds like a psychopathology in itself. Is there a term for thinking you’ve got a medical condition when you don’t have it? Is it just hypochondria? Munchausen Syndrome is when you think you have lots of rare disorders, I think, not just one issue).
In Jewish thought, embarrassing someone else is a terrible thing to do. In some ways it is considered worse than murder, because you can only murder someone once, whereas you can embarrass them many times; worse, every time that they think of the embarrassment, it is like you are murdering them again. I don’t really want to spend the week getting embarrassed.
I guess I shouldn’t preemptively feel embarrassed, it’s just hard not to be negative sometimes. I suppose the feeling is that if I feel embarrassed in advance, at least I’m prepared. That’s anxiety for you. As I mentioned yesterday, the last few years Chanukah has been a time of relative calm, but this year all the things that are going on in my life have, if not ruined that, then at least made it more difficult to feel the positive feelings.
Don’t worry about me if I go quiet for a bit. I’m going to try to cut down my internet time (although at the moment I’m not sure how, particularly if I’m applying for jobs). If I’m not job hunting, I should be reading hard copy books or watching DVDs, not aimlessly internet surfing or procrastinating.