Stress Junkie


If I were directing this latest bout of stress as a video I also starred in, I think the best descriptive would be screaming underwater. Or perhaps incased in a rubbery balloon like bubble, stretching my limbs out and trying to free myself, only to bounce back into the fetal position. Or maybe I would be peeling layer after layer of liquid latex off of me, as a symbol of wanting to crawl out of my own skin. But I’m not directing myself in a video, and as much as I want to, I cannot peel myself out of my own skin, so my mind wanders into playgrounds it wasn’t invited to.

I’m a stress junkie, and I am hopped up on this shit this time around. Despite the fact that I don’t love the stress, it’s something I quite easily fall into it out of habit or otherwise. Somehow I think I create the frenzy that kicks it into gear. The whirl of the trade, batting one problem out of the park at a time. I swear I can hear that proverbial bat C-C-C-R-R-A-A-C-C-K-K! every time I hit one out. At the same time, I realize the price for taking on so much (which is completely inevitable in this new position) is that it’s just a matter of time before my mind is a soupy mess of undercooked scrambled eggs, just sliding all over the plate. I can’t keep a decent rhythm of work going. I am just a frantic little mine worker, running from fire to fire just stamping out the flames, until finally I drop to the ground, not giving a fuck if everything burns to the ground.

My daughter noted a couple of weeks ago I have developed a strong habit of deeply sighing. All of the time. I am trying to be cognizant of it, because at one point it made her boyfriend think I was sighing to signal his overstaying a welcome. Not in the least. I’ve come to the realization that even in my happy or relaxed times I tend to hold my breath. I’m so fucking stressed I have forgotten how to breathe!

I wondered today as I drove in, when I would have that happy calm back in my life? Perhaps then I could consider dating and … then it dawned on me. This could be it. This could be how the rest of my life goes on, until retirement. I mean I know there will be lulls. There will be periods of time when I absolutely want to put an ice pick thru my eye because I am so flipping bored. But those will be momentary, and sparse. Or so I suspect. But see – that’s also the stress talking. The stress makes me negative and paranoid and hyper sensitive. I’m aware of the negativity and try and trap it before it spills out, but the paranoid hyper-sensitive part of me isn’t so easy. When I don’t hear from friends or loved ones, I start to suspect that I’ve done something wrong; Maybe I should have jibbed when I jabbed. Maybe I should have … My mind simply overthinks everything. Work bleeds into personal which just bleeds and bleeds. I find myself isolating a little more, until I get a case of the fuck-its going.

I know somehow I can get my footing. I know there is a slippery foothold out here somewhere, I just can’t seem to recall where it is. I hoped that the time off over the holiday week would have been what I needed, and maybe it was for a day or two, but it didn’t last. I keep telling myself that as soon as the company I deal with gets their shit together, it will be enough for me to scramble back up. Maybe that will be true. Maybe it’s still the learning curve of the new job. Maybe it’s Mercury in retrograde.

I don’t know!! – and I have to ask myself, does it matter? Not in the least. Knowledge is not the cure all.



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