i’ve got 12 weeks of unemployment checks, the rough drafts for sections of what will hopefully become my first completed body of work, more books than i think i can handle, a growing collection of incense/herbs/stones that i’ve poured my intentions into, and an empty feeling i can’t seem to shake to show for the three months since becoming unemployed. time that has been spent, appropriately, working. on myself. on projects i never knew i had a passion for. on the relationships in my life (or what’s left of them).
i know that time to call your loved ones and write all day and read as many books as you can is a luxury most people, myself included, are usually not afforded. i know this gift is temporary. and most of all, i know someone else needs these checks more than i do. yet when i look back on the three years i spent working through depression, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts—i’m grateful for this intermission from “the real world.”
that job was holding me in place. since leaving i’ve cracked through the surface of myself, exposing what i had buried so deep within. i’ve had time to remember what matters to me besides paying bills on time. i’ve had time to revisit myself. to see what’s broken down over the years and what i’m so pleased to find is still in there. still ticking.
a few days ago i went through my archives, both digital and on paper. i grew infuriated seeing that i have spent so many years convinced that planning was taking action, and that i had basically been a spectator in my own life thus far. it was reminiscent of what lena dunham’s father said about her of not being present in her life because she was too busy turning each moment into a scene and each person a character. i can’t say i’m surprised because before i was a writer, i was an avid reader. i’ve always been escaping the moment, with words, one way or another.
what’s next for me is of course unclear. for once, i’m not up to my ass in plans. i barely use my calendar. i don’t have a work schedule to work around. it’s terrifying, honestly. i wouldn’t trade it for anything. having a job teaches you skills that make you an asset to someone else’s plans. this freedom is teaching me how to be an asset to myself.