I’m feeling lost today. Can’t concentrate on anything. Slipping into daydream and fantasy, as I do when very depressed (and maybe when not depressed, I’m not sure). We’re all the stars of the films of our lives, but I probably take that too literally. Listless. Feeling unable to do anything. I’m worried that last week (two job interviews and a breakup) has pushed me a long way backwards.
Procrastinating. Aimlessly browsing online, not reading anything. Why is everything online so angry? Isn’t anyone open to the idea that they might not be right, or at least that other people might also be right? I know that when I feel like this, it’s companionship that I’m searching for rather than socio-political or cultural commentary, but I can’t find that online. So I’m just wasting time. I wish I had more real-life friends, and I wish they lived more locally, but it’s doubtful whether I would see them if they did. I don’t even really have the confidence to talk to my shul (synagogue) friends at kiddush or seudah. I don’t get to sit with them or I’m too shy to say anything or I assume that they don’t want to speak to me. There was a message on the shul What’sApp about trying to organise a trip to see the Cairo Geniza collection at Cambridge. This ticks almost all my boxes (Judaism, history, libraries), but I haven’t yet responded, because I don’t know the person’s phone number to respond (all posts on the What’sApp are via the shamash or the rabbi) and am too shy to ask around.
Similarly, I should stop procrastinating over asking my fan friends to look at my Doctor Who book and just ask them. ‘m worried that they have too much on, but that they would say yes anyway and I would feel guilty. Beyond that, it boils down to the fact that I like writing, but am less keen on showing people my writing or getting feedback on it. Perhaps this is not so different from being too shy to speak to people, even my friends, at shul. Then again, I’ve never had more than twenty likes on a blog post, so maybe almost no one is interested in my opinions after all.
I guess in my head there’s an unhealthy binary choice between “Being Myself” and “Fitting In”. I don’t think, objectively, that most people sacrifice their inner selves to fit in, but at the same time, I probably should accept that, with my history of being bullied and ignored, and my strong, but unusual/autistic personality and interests, it is probably inevitable that I feel deeply ambivalent about fitting in anywhere. I find it hard to believe anyone could accept me for who I am, so I hide myself (or hide my ‘self’) in any community. That goes double for my shul where I’m aware that there are issues where I absolutely don’t agree with this community and never will, it’s just the least worst option currently available. Probably if I was accepted somewhere, I would feel that I had sold out in some way. As a great man said, “I don’t want to belong to any club that will accept me as a member.” (I just left a similar comment on this post on Hevria.)
I guess I just want someone to tell me that I’m a good person, but I don’t think I would believe them if they did. I recently hit 300 followers on my blog, but I think a lot of them are spammy and I suspect (from my likes) that most of them aren’t actually reading it. TL;DR is my middle name.
I somehow managed to apply for another job. Nevertheless, I feel I should have done more today, and better. I know I wrote a job application (although most of it was reused from an earlier one), I did some laundry and cooked dinner (a new recipe, Indian lentils and rice. I burnt the rice) and went to shul for Mincha and Ma’ariv (Afternoon and Evening Services). But all the same, I feel I should have worked on one of my books and done more Torah study and davened with more kavannah and written a better job application. And not burnt the rice. No, I know I should do more and better. I’m not supposed to be seriously depressed and low functioning, I’m supposed to be moderately to mildly depressed and functional.
I use ‘should’ a lot and I’ve been told not to, but it seems to me that Judaism is a religion of ‘shoulds’ not choices or ‘maybes.’ In any case “I should not use shoulds” just becomes another ‘should.’
I finally got feedback from the academic librarianship job I was interviewed for a couple of weeks ago. The said I had good answers and “a good deal of empathy in my answers”, which is positive, but also that I’m “reserved and quite serious” and lacking in personality; they also felt I was unable to understand the relative informality of the institution. It was better feedback than that from the Very Important Organisation, but still a bit dispiriting. I didn’t get the law librarian job either, but the feedback from that was much better; they said that I gave good examples and coped well even though I was nervous and that they would be willing to look at me again if another position in the library became vacant.
There’s a long article in The Economist’s 1843 Magazine about the struggles of gifted children that I empathised with. Talk of loneliness and bullying sounds all too familiar, as do not being able to connect to other children and having intellectual development that runs far ahead of their (the gifted children’s) emotional development. Sometimes I wonder what would have happened to me if I had gone to an educationally-selective school. Would that have helped my socialisation?
The strange thing is, in a 5,000 word article that mentions intellectual precociousness, sensory sensitivity, anxiety and overthinking, poor social skills and social meltdowns, the words “high functioning autism” or “Asperger’s Syndrome” are not mentioned once. No wonder I’ve struggled to get diagnosed.
I told my father that I asked the values-based dating service shadchan (matchmaker) not to look for anyone for me for a while. I didn’t want to tell him, but he kept asking questions until I had to either tell him or lie outright and I’m not dishonest (I’m also a terrible liar). I don’t think he thought it was a particularly good idea, which was why I hadn’t told him. He seemed to think that if I hadn’t told the shadchan, she would have found someone else suitable for me very quickly, which I think is wishful thinking, bearing how long it took her to find L. He also thinks someone could be interested in me even though I’m unemployed, which I think is unlikely, L. notwithstanding. I also feel I need time out from dating to decide what I want to do with my career, whereas I think my parents are assuming I’m just looking for the right library job.
His concern does make me think that I’m running out of time to get married, certainly if I want to have children, but I think that anyway. Nevertheless, I do get lonely and I do find myself wishing someone would drop out the sky and accept me the way E. did, but then even E. only managed to accept me for two months.
I had distressing violent thoughts of dying again today. I don’t know what to do with them.