Today seems to be the first hot day of summer. I’m not good with heat, particularly not the humid heat we have today. I can’t really win, because I don’t mind the cold in autumn and winter, but I need more light than is available in the UK then.
I have a job interview tomorrow for a job that looks quite good. There’s another job I applied for last week and one I want to apply for this week that also look quite good. Which is all good, but scary. Scary to think I could get a job and scary in a different way to think I might not get one. Plus the scariness of the hours as some of the jobs are full-time and I’m not sure if I could cope with that right now and others are part-time, but require work on Fridays, which can be problematic in the winter when Shabbat (the Jewish Sabbath) starts mid-afternoon. This is a problem most frum (religious) Jews have, but it’s easier to negotiate with a boss when you’re working a full week, rather than Friday being one of only three days in the office.
I’m having another day where just doing anything is an effort because I feel so depressed. That’s not good when I need to do interview preparation, apply for a job, cook dinner, sort out bank paperwork… I’d also like to write a short article on managing with chronic illness in the frum Jewish community and try to sell it to a Jewish newspaper, but I don’t know when I’ll have the time. I suppose it’s good to be busy, but with depression at the same time, it can be a struggle.
What I am trying to do that takes no time, but quite a bit of effort, is to “thought stop” my worries, particularly about employment and marriage (or rather, the absence of both). It’s hard when it feels logical to be worried, but I can see the worry does not actually help me, as it so rarely leads to positive action; if anything, the wallowing in despair stops me taking action and alienates those around me (as seen with my friends recently). I’m trying even to feel hopeful that things could change for me, even though this seems like magical thinking (“The Law of Attraction” etc.) rather than reality. I’m trying also to be at least open to the idea that God loves me, and that I’m not a terrible, useless, stupid person. It’s hard. It’s hard to know what’s realistic. At the moment I don’t feel that I can write professionally, but I don’t know if that’s realistic or not. And I keep remembering my friends telling me that I have a “whiny, self-obsessed blog” and I can’t stop it, even though I know it’s not helpful to think about it.
Another thing I need to decide on is whether I’m going to volunteer at the asylum seekers drop-in centre on Sunday. I haven’t gone for a couple of sessions (it’s monthly). I’ve become nervous about it. I used to enjoy helping and looking after the children, but lately I’ve found it harder. I feel awkward sorting the donations of clothes, feeling that I am confusing men’s and women’s garments as well as adult’s and children’s, but I’m embarrassed to ask anyone for help. I thought volunteering would help me to meet people, but no one really talks to me, I’m too shy to talk to anyone else, and there’s no one my age there anyway (most are either older than me or teenagers/older children). Few people are as frum as me either, so far as I can tell from clothing styles, although that’s not so much of an issue. But the worst is that now there are so many children in the creche area that I feel totally overwhelmed. It’s impossible to keep the children in the creche area and not running around the hall and onto the raised stage at the far end of the hall (which they love to escape to and go up – I have visions of them falling off) and they seem to be more disobedient lately (possibly because of competition for toys) and I struggle to control them. Telling off other people’s children seems wrong and I lack the authority to do it. I also struggle to engage with children over the age of seven or eight, which I suppose was the age where my own differences from other children started becoming obvious, although that may be rationalisation on my part. So, I’m scared to go, but maybe that’s a reason why I should go, to confront my fears rather than running from them. I seem to have done a lot of running away lately.