(For the record, I’ve lost count on how many times I’ve done this. I suppose that, in a strange way, that’s probably perfect for me.)
I’m conflicted about this, because I think I’ve (finally?) come to the conclusion that I may not want to do this for a living. Writing, I mean. To be fair, I don’t really want to do ANYTHING for a living - I still have that wholly useless, totally impractical but still exceedingly awesome idea of living the bohemian life - winning the lottery (or otherwise acquiring a massive lump sum, probably in the millions or so), buying a place in New York (probably in Baltimore too - RE. my crazy two-house idea), and just spend my days doing whatever popped into my aimless mind (as of the past couple of days, it’s been retro PC gaming, and I’m sure that that’ll subside with time) (although maybe not, since this kindasorta ties into my
previous interest in nostalgia), until I either died or killed myself. One of the two.
There are SO many ways to go with this, but let’s at least deal with what brought me back in the first place, and indirectly we deal with my original throwaway line up top. So, during one of the MANY moments of downtime I had at work, I had an occasion to come to three conclusions:
Okay, admittedly I don’t remember them right now (although they’ll come to me, no doubt), but I
(kindasorta) remember a big one, which went something along the lines of “I am depressed because I fear the future and I don’t remember my past. I am depressed because my default is the present, which thoroughly bores me.” Something like that (although I did just add in the “bores me” part just now). This struck me as a fairly massive revelation, and the more I started to unpack it, the more it made sense.
(I thought I might’ve written it down in my notebook, but I was wrong. It only exists in an email draft at work right now.)
Really, neither of those two things (being “fear of the future” and “no memory of the past”) (and admittedly, I’m fudging the details here, but for the sake of this argument, bear with) are all that particularly revelatory, or even new to me. And honestly, putting them together like that, I’m sure that’s not the first time my subconscious mind has conjured that up. It just happened to stick in my conscious mind, simply because of what’s happened to me over the past two-odd years has been so radically different than the first twenty-seven.
Before I get to that, it may be helpful to define these “terms” (FLOABT) before I move on. Not that I’ll do a particularly good job at doing such, but I’ll give it a try anyway.
So, with “fear of the future”, I ultimately mean “fear of death”, and it’s not so much “death” as it is “cessation of existence”. (I used to term it “nonexistence”, but that’s different - the former means that I stopped existing, but the latter means I NEVER existed, which (depending on your viewpoint) can be good or bad, while in my particular case, the former’s ENTIRELY bad.) (Yeah, no. I don’t know what I’m talking about here. This makes no sense.) Which is “ironic” (I guess?), considering all the times (and there were a LOT of them) where I wished that the universe would kill me already (sometimes literally, sometimes metaphorically, oftentimes both). I will give props to the universe for being on this one wavelength with me, for once - without exception (meaning NOT A ONE), when I wished to “die”, I didn’t actually WANT to die as I did “remove myself from my current unpleasant situation” - “die” was just a whole lot faster to say, especially in this age of pith and brevity that we live in. More than anything, I hate being bored, and found cessation of existence to be an acceptable alternative. (Note: “Acceptable”. NOT “preferred”. And Jesus - I am using a lot of quotes, man.)
But in the absence of such a boring situation (read: life in VA), I actually find life to be a wonderful thing. You’ll never take the six months I spent in Brooklyn (but mostly Manhattan) away from me, and even on weekends, I seem to occupy myself fairly well. Hell - when there’s shit to keep me busy at work, I’m good. It’ just the other times…
Which brings me to the “fear of the future” thing. My fear isn’t ABOUT the future (as it normally never is) - I’m not one of those technophobes who constantly reminisces about the good old days, which you’d think would be right up my alley, all things considered. (Two theories on this. (1) I didn’t have any good old days, and (2), I am equally as guilty of romanticizing the past (RE: 1970s, retro PC gaming, vinyl).) I actually love technology, and am a self-identified progressive, which means that I’m virtually guaranteed to be on the right side of history on ANYTHING. (Which appeases the know-it-all in me - he’s playing for the long game, apparently.) And it it might be this whole spirit of being on the bleeding edge of [insert thing here] which leads me to what I’m ACTUALLY scared of - no longer existing in this big, beautiful, wonderful, constantly propelling world.
Double-whammy: Fully knowing that this is an inevitability (drink!) scares the absolute shit outta me.