(photo by Terence S. Jones)
I have been basically happy or content at some level for over month now. This is pretty much a miracle in the saga of my last year. I haven’t been thinking about it too loudly in case it is all a fragile bubble that will burst at any sudden movements (thoughts are movements now, did ya know?).
This mostly happy living is a good thing, a great thing, but I have a bad habit. A habit of wondering if it is ‘healthy.’ So I not only worry about the happy streak ending, but also whether or not the happiness is ‘real’ or just me living in a state of denial. Let me explain..
I’m moving in approximately 49 work days (yes I have a post it note countdown on my desk at work) or about 3 months. Part of this move will involved needing to find a new job in a new (old) city. I’m expecting at least three months of unemployment after I move, but I know it could be worse. I also know that I absolutely hate applying for jobs. The application process is probably one of the only things in the world that I literally, forever and endlessly detest. It is time consuming, boring, full of risk and uncertainty and also rejection. I end up applying for hundreds (quite literally) of jobs I don’t really think I’ll like out of feelings of desperation. Last time I was unemployed for about six months and I got pretty depressed. I started to interview for volunteer positions despite it not resolving my joblessness simply so I wouldn’t be at home alone 40+ hours a week with my thoughts.
The thing that utterly TERRIFIES me about moving is this period of applying to jobs. Terrifies in all caps is not an exaggeration. A small thought of it puts a knot in my stomach, my arms feel a slight tremor and a headache forms immediately behind my temples. If I could cower away and avoid ever having to apply for a job again I would. Yes I hate the process and am procrastinating on warming old contacts and revising my CV, but I am also so afraid that I will become depressed again and that this time I won’t be able to find myself out of it.
Now all of this stuff is maybe a bit crazy (and dramatic), but none of it is actually the point of this post–its the background. What I hope is that I’m not the only one who constantly assesses their current happy state for signs of denial. I’ve had a little over a month where I have been smiling and laughing more than brooding. This has coincided with me continuing not to think about the move that is getting closer and closer and all the stress that entails. I should be happy that my mental/emotional state seems to be improving (even for inexplicable reasons), but instead I have the niggling feeling that I’m just in an unhealthy state of denial. Then I begin to obsess over how to heal my wounds healthily. How to deal with my problems without ignoring my impending doom and—well that sets me off down the rabbit hole again….
This is not the most organized and well-thought out post, but I simply wanted to express the situation and reassure myself that other people worry their happiness is in fact warm thin veils of joy over deep pools of denial. I have absolutely no solutions here. So far I’m just telling myself its silly to worry about it, if I’m happy then I’m happy. Of course there’s always that sneaking suspicion…
Are you struggling between happiness and denial? (It sounds so absurd when I say it like that) Please share and reassure all of us quietly going crazy people.