You ever lose all your momentum?
I’m talkin’, you were on top of your game, maybe in school, at work, taking names, running everything, being amazing, getting stuff done on time and then –
You wake up one morning and none of it matters anymore, because the program’s over, or you got a new job, or you’re off the trail.
I felt this way when I got graduated into the real world, when college ended and I had no “real job.” And now here I am again. Slowly going insane.
I’m sure there’s some silver lining.
Something must come out of this, right? Something good? Something important?
Look at how strong I am, or something…
It’s really difficult to tell what your important lesson is going to be when you’re in the thick of the bullshit. I’m not saying I shouldn’t be here right now, off the trail. I mean, I’m here because of low funds and family activities. Life is a flurry of high school graduations and a dear teacher’s retirement and a final family vacation and I feel like I need to be at all of it, supporting people, being there for them.
“It all works out,”
Or at least, that’s what I’m telling myself every day as I get out of bed later and groggier with increasing hangovers and less enthusiasm.
I got off the trail because Pineapple was incredibly sick. I stayed off because of that. Then I realized I didn’t have enough money to get to Kathadin and, conveniently, a short-term babysitting job appeared. Then I had to be local for my sister’s graduation and family vacation. So, in a quick extreme landslide, I will have been off the trail for 2 months.
That’s totally not what I imagined.
So, “It’s all working out!” I say. Over. And over. To convince myself that this was worth it, that losing my trail friends had to happen, that I’m going to be back on the trail soon, that it’s going to be fine that this is all…
On the bright side,
There’s lots of things to keep me busy here! (Sort of!)
Look, I can do THIS now!
Look at this ART! WOW! RIGHT?! I HAND DREW THAT!!
And I’m applying for “real jobs” for when I get back! Hell, I’ve already gotten an interview for one! Isn’t that exquisite?! Turns out, I can function in society (I think).
Going insane is truly an art form.
Maybe this is somehow backwardly connected to the frugality and hard-working-mindset that my mother taught me early on in life, but I believe that something should come out of every thing that you do.
Being depressed and upset and going insane should not happen silently. It should lead you to brilliant or dangerous places, where you can learn and grow and leave a mark. If you’re going to go insane, you might as well make something of it.
I got thrown into a deep hole of depression this past week because I wasn’t doing anything with my shitty mindset. I wasn’t hiking, I wasn’t making friends, I wasn’t really talking to anyone. I was just sitting in a bathtub watching Angelina Jolie movies or Archer on repeat. Sounds like a scene out of a movie, but felt real bad.
Then, honestly, I was talking to my dear friend Carleton and somehow, some way, they both convinced me that despite all the boring bullshit happening right now, I am still a bad ass and need to keep going. Actually, when I was talking to them, giving up was never an option.
Lonely Wayne makes a break for it.
What helps in these situations?
I want to believe I’m making a break for it. I want to escape and be wild. Truth be told, I don’t know what’s going to happen to me. I’m going to get back on the Appalachian Trail whether it runs my bank account clean or not. And then? …And then and then and then.
Who knows, you might be able to find me anywhere in the world.
Thanks so much for listening to all of this,