getting out of myself

Not surprisingly, I’ve been dropping into therapy over the last few months (prior to SG, I would add).  While that’s serendipitous on the relationship stuff, it started because of the depression stuff. I’m not focused on anything specific, we just take things as we get to them.

Lately, the focus has been how to get beyond the blah-ness of my attitude toward life.  As I explained today, when I look at my life, I see a wide, featureless road leading to absolutely nothing. Let me hasten to add that my outlook wasn’t much better before SG left but I had company on that road so it seemed bearable while I figured out how to change directions.  With the end of the relationship, everything just flattened out – nothing horrible, nothing wonderful, just ongoing blah.

That is not the way I want to live my life.

So that means figuring out how to make changes.  I can’t change everything, obviously, so it also means figuring out what I can change to make myself happy with the life I have – because that’s pretty much all I’ve got here: this life with myself.

I don’t want to be a caricature: the aging single female professor using her students as substitutes for the children she didn’t have and coming home to her solitary existence of simple meals and hundreds of books.  None of those things are wrong, in and of themselves, because they’re true for me now.  it’s just that when I look at my future life, I can’t help but see how I could so easily calcify into someone I don’t want to be in a life I don’t want to live.

Somehow I have to get out of myself.  I have to change things – little things, big things – or I’m going to retreat into a life that allows me to exist rather than live.  

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4 thoughts on “getting out of myself

  1. oldschoolprof says:

    Can I make a few other suggestions? Join a church … you sound like a Unitarian. It could ground you plus you could meet people. Volunteer for something. You sound really great with kids. Could you give one hour per week at a school? Or hold babies at a hospital? Finally, pursue a hobby I know this sounds corny. You are like me, you tend to build a wall around yourself. Tear down that wall! Good luck….

    • phd me says:

      Oh, I don’t think church is the answer for me, but I do appreciate the suggestion. Funny you should mention volunteering, though: I just signed up to volunteer with a reading program in a local kindergarden – I’ll let you know how it goes!

      And, yes, the wall just gets higher and higher. It’s a rather insidious brick-laying, though; I wouldn’t say I was so guarded without actually stepping back and thinking about it. I don’t know that I can tear it down…but maybe I can build a door.

  2. Servetus says:

    You say no kids and hundreds of books like that is something bad :) that was more or less my life aspiration.

    I agree with the previous poster — sounds like a new experience of some kind is in order. Anything you’ve always wanted to do but put off? New scenery? Learn a new language? Swim with a dolphin?

    • phd me says:

      New experiences are definitely in order. I’m working on the volunteering thing; other ideas are a bit slow. I’m not really in an area with lots of options (there are no dolphins, alas, just groundhogs) but I’m working on it.

      And trust me, I’m not denigrating the books; I have hundreds already and wouldn’t get rid of them for anything. It’s the paralyzing caricature I fear. Even if no one else is thinking it, I am – and so, I’ll work on that new experience.

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