I still feel that I am coming down with a cold. I feel hot and bothered and exhausted. I’m not sure how much is exhaustion and how much is a real virus. I felt so exhausted and depressed that I got up late and was slow getting ready, so the original plan for the day, to go to The Jewish Museum with my Dad, was abandoned as we wouldn’t get our money’s worth out of the entrance fee. We went to the British Museum instead, which is free, so we didn’t feel resentful of only going for an hour or two. I felt a bit better while I was there, physically and emotionally. It was probably just as well that I missed The Jewish Museum, as I wanted to see the Jews and Money exhibition; spending the afternoon looking at Nazi and Soviet propaganda of Jews as economic parasites might not have been the most enjoyable thing on Chol HaMoed (the intermediate days of Passover). Instead, at the British Museum, I got to look at relics from ancient civilisations that tried to wipe out the Jews, but have long-since vanished while we’re still here: Egyptians, Assyrians, Greeks, which I think was appropriate for the Festival of Redemption.
I have a date with L. on Monday. This is after therapy at lunch time and spending the previous day peopling in Oxford after two days of Yom Tov, so I hope I will not be burnt out and unable to interact before I even get there (remember to breathe). I’m trying not to overthink it, but it’s hard.
I’m also trying not to overthink Pesach (Passover) OCD stuff. The religious OCD has been a lot better this year (three days to go), but it’s hard to let go of some thoughts, silly though they seem. The biggest fear is that the kosher supermarkets might have accidentally had forbidden chametz (leavened) produce and we bought it, which is really just punishing myself for not having checked the hechshers (rabbinic seals of approval). Sometimes my OCD means “I don’t think I deserve for this to be OK.”
I watched The King’s Speech yesterday. My Dad insisted on lending me the DVD ages ago, but I hadn’t got around to it as I wasn’t that interested. I was wrong. It was really good, but what surprised me was that it’s really about self-esteem and accepting who you are, or rather who God/fate/life wants you to be. Accepting that you can grow and change.
One exchange resonated with me:
Bertie [the future George VI]: I’m not going to sit here warbling.
Lionel Logue [speech therapist]: You can with me.
Bertie: You’re peculiar.
Logue: I take that as a compliment.
I like being different. Admittedly this is because I have a low opinion of both the consumerist, hedonist, godless rat-race mainstream Western world and the often narrow-minded, self-righteous, and sometimes also hypocritically consumerist frum (religious Orthodox Jewish) world. I complain that I don’t fit in either, but deep down, I don’t really want to belong in either. I like being different. But it’s lonely and I have a history of being bullied and rejected for being different. So I hide my eccentricities and interests and compartmentalise my life: Jewish stuff, work stuff, geeky stuff… My oldest friend is much more open about being a geeky. When we were at school, he would refer to geeky stuff in class work; now he talks about it in his sermons (he’s a non-Orthodox rabbi). I wish I could be a little bolder in presenting the real me.
I suppose that’s why writing is so important to me, here and in the books I would like to write/am writing. I want to get the Doctor Who book finished in a couple of months and send it out to publishers so I can start work in earnest on the Judaism/autism/depression misery memoir that seems potentially more worthwhile, worthwhile because it might help other people and worthwhile because I’ll be able to show the real me.