Thursday, July 28, 2011

Day 274-Familiarity

Pain level-2 to 3 (bone spur, right shoulder, back of head, and neck)
Anxiety:  8-9

So I added my anxiety level to this post because I think it's relevant.  I have noticed lately that I am feeling either dulled and depressed and tired or anxious.  Today was the first time in awhile that I made myself get up and get moving.  I have good reasons to be anxious:  my father had been ill and was hospitalized yesterday; the dryer blew out and the washer is moving at a snail's pace; I had a nasty side effect from my new antidepressant and had to give it up.  And all the things I need to do in reference to multiple jobs seemed looming.  Because of that, I decided I was going to take a giant leap for myself and just say no to extra work right now.  No overnight babysitting for August.  And, more worriedly, no courses taught in the fall semester.  I was only scheduled to teach two one-hour courses.  Hardly worth my time anyway, but I've been putting off going to get my text and all the other things I need to do for the course to prepare.  As I was getting sick in the bathroom this morning (yay, meds), I decided, enough.  So I wrote my supervisor a short email.  I had planned to call her, but then decided I'd rather send it via email.  As soon as I sent it, this huge relief washed over me.  I can concentrate on my job!  Hurray!  My ONE job for now, relying on me regulating myself and doing good work.  I'm excited.  I won't get rich but I'll get a paycheck, and I'm fully satisfied.

Of course, none of that relates to familiarity, but I thought I'd write it down to record it anyway.

A few nights ago I was tossing around in bed.  Nights seem to be the worst and best time combined.  If I stay busy, messing around on my laptop or watching tv or whatever, I'm content for the most part.  If I try to sleep, I'm often so anxious it's difficult to sleep without medication.  I was lying in bed the other night, tossing and turning, crying and thinking of things that were comforting for me.  I thought about sticking in a DVD of Criminal Intent and immediately felt calmer.  Why, I pondered, does that show make me feel soothed?  It's not like watching death and violence is a huge turn on for me.  It only took a few minutes to realize the incredibly obvious conclusion:  familiarity.  I know the dialogue, the scenes, the characters.  I can predict what's happening and find it to be interesting and clever storytelling.  It's the familiarity of all of it that makes it so comforting for me.

It's the same reason I have such a passionate regard for the lead characters.  Every look, every snarky remark, feels so relatable.  I feel among old friends.  As I've been writing this, I've realized exactly how little familiarity I've had in the last year.  New place to live, new job, new everything.  It may be the same old place I grew up but it's not how it was then.  Cities change, people change.  My parents have changed.  Everything, even the familiar, is different than it once was.

As Bobby said, "People look for an edge in an uncertain world."  That edge also has to do with what's comfortable and feels good.  Reading certain books over and over, watching certain programs or movies again and again, eating your favorite cooky on the couch in your pj's with milk and your favorite blanket.  Which reminds me of the very tall, solid EMT who came after my 911 call the other night.  We don't need to get into the details of the call, except it was on someone else's behalf.  However, this EMT was roughly the size I guesstimate Vincent D'Onofrio to be, which begs the image of snuggling on the couch with your milk, cooky, blanket, and a warm massive Robert Goren next to you.

Okay, I 'll admit that is NOT familiar...but I sure would love to make it familiar!  Robert O's welcome over anytime.  And no, Bobby, you don't even have to call first.

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