waiting to leave

I’m waiting to leave my house.

It’s 9:20 AM on a Tuesday. I have studio time booked for 10, but it’s too early to leave.

It’s not that far. Only a 12 minute car ride from my house.

I’ve hired a violinist play on a sad track I wrote called, “All Your Books”. A track that I know is my most honest one yet, but I’m simultaneously afraid to release it for fear people/listeners will needlessly worry about me. (Y’all don’t need to – The song was written awhile ago in a different headspace than my current one.) But I can’t deny the honesty Life. That’s what music and art and songwriting is all about. And I feel as though I must stay true to that, regardless of others’ potential misconceptions.

The song touches on loneliness and I suppose feeling left behind in an important aspect of growing up – that of physical love. And grappling with that. Trying to pull myself up out of my depression by my own bootstraps; Trying really hard to put a positive spin on it, and lift myself out of it based on logic and sheer will. It’s a very intimate song. It’s delicate. It’s vulnerable. It frightens me.

But the one thing that does not frighten me is the certainty that I am not alone. That I am not alone in my feelings or experiences and that there are other people out there just like me. Who feel just like this. Who will/can resonate when the hear the song and/or read the words. And as an artist who appreciates music, how else can I contribute to the scene without putting something out there that perhaps has never been expressed before in this way? Isn’t that the point? To do it even when it hurts? Even when you’re scared?

Today the sky looks like blue raspberry italian ice. I’m drinking cold brew I made with Madcap coffee (really good coffee and would totally buy those beans again). Today would have been my maternal grandparents’ 60th wedding anniversary (that’s Nonna and my Poppy for those keeping score). Today my mom seems tense, anxious, and worrisome.

We got a little puppy last month (a Dachshund/Chihuahua mix whose name is Mario) and he has been such a joy to have in the house. He’s going to be 7 months in a few weeks. He is playful, a little mischievous, doing pretty well with house training, and only barks a little a night – he’s getting better with that…

I think there’s so much more to talk about and say – I’ve forgotten how nice it is to just let it out on the page sometimes – but I think I will focus on finishing this cold brew and loading the few items I have into my car.

To anyone who’s reading these weird, little, intimate posts of mine – Hello! Thank you.

And even if no one is, I don’t care. Sometimes it’s nice to write it all out, just for me. 🙂


self-imposed guilt

Why do I feel so guilty when I don’t do yoga? Or when I don’t get everything done on my to-do list? I hate that. Why am I such a perfectionist? When can’t I just chill and let things go, let things flow? I hate how I allow these minor infractions of going off-schedule or “off to-do list” can slow down and drag down my whole day. I need to rise about this self-imposed bullshit I put on myself.

I worked a late shift last night, got home around 2, showered, and by the time I got to bed it was 3. I woke up at about 9:40 and knew there was a restorative class at 12:15 I totally could have gone to. But I went downstairs and forgot my brother had taken the day off and I feel like I haven’t seen him all week, so we had breakfast together and it was nice. But eating when we did ruled out going to yoga (because I don’t practice well if I eat less than 2 hours before. I don’t feel right and it’s distracting). And I’m glad we spent time together. I probably would have made the same choice if I started my day all over again. Yet why do I feel guilt for not going to yoga? It’s not like I said I’d go and then didn’t show up. I didn’t even reserve a spot. Yet I feel like I’m punishing myself, making myself feel badly for not committing to something I wanted to do in a perfect world, you know?

And it’s not just yoga, it’s other things too. Like clearing my desk, reading more, changing my guitar strings – anything really. Yoga’s just today’s example. Sometimes there’s just not enough time in a day or not enough personal energy in a day to get it all done. I have to learn how to be okay with my choices, especially when choosing not to do something. When we’re young, our parents are our primary disciplinarians teaching us right from wrong, teaching us values. But as we get older and find ourselves in more and more situations where we need to rely on ourselves, I think there are moments sometimes where we know we missed the mark (or think we missed the mark) where we end up disciplining ourselves in a strange way. As though there is some straight-lined objective that’s a part of us. And feeling like shit or “unfulfilled” or “guilty” is part of that self-punishment. And I think it’s so ingrained into my mind it happens automatically. It’s like a Pavlovian effect.

Because although it may not be my list, having breakfast and laughing with my brother, catching up on TV, or going for a walk (which I still hope to do) are still good and wonderful things. And I don’t regret doing those things. I need to stop feeling as though the day is lost because I didn’t get one or two things done. I need to learn how to look forward and move on and see the big picture.

Maybe it’s the curse of being near-sighted; I get too close to things and forget to back up and realize it’s all part of a bigger picture.

learned anxiety

As I’ve gotten older, the more I realize I get a lot of anxiety via my parents. I mean, yes, probably everyone’s parents give them anxiety, but I mean anxiety as in learned behavior. And it’s been happening my whole life. The way they both handle situations sometimes. My dad procrastinated doing his taxes until today and he is a wreck. Inconsolable. On a runaway train of despair and anxiety so constricting and tight it could strangle him. He needs answers and he needs them now. He will be unreasonable and not care about the consequences. He is hot-headed and terrified. Laser-focused taking short sips of air – But I am also all those things when I get into similar states. And I don’t like to get into those states. But sometimes I do. Sometimes the emotions run away with me and I can’t hit the brakes, can’t find the brakes, convinced there are no brakes. And before I know it, I’m hyperventilating and livid because I got something from my health insurance that doesn’t make sense at 5 PM on a Friday and now I can’t call customer service until Monday because they’re closed. I will sit and stew and it will ruin my night. It will ruin my weekend. And everything will be cursed to hell. Until I allow myself to be talked down.

I’m not sure if my parents have gotten worse as they’ve gotten older, or perhaps they’ve always been this way and I am only now aware enough to see it, to notice it because I identify it with my own emotions. I’m not sure if it’s a nature or nurture thing, but it sucks. I often wonder about the kids (who are now young adults like me) who had emotionally-sound parents that didn’t suffer from anxiety (and at times depression) who will never know what this feels like. I envy them.

My mom has actually been really good today. She’s calm. She’ll roll her eyes to me, but mostly keep her frustrations to herself because she knows my Dad is going through his own hell. I constantly remind her that picking fights is never worth it and careless comments meant to harm or injure should be avoided at all costs. It’s a waste of energy. My dad also has been nursing an injured knee (having decided to take up running again at 65), so I feel like a lot of his frustrations and anxieties are being misdirected because of that. I try to be calm and patient – and also stay the hell out of his way if I can help it.

But I feel like the whole house is walking a tightrope and we could fall and plummet at any second. It’s a balancing act and we’re all holding up a full set dining room table with only our heads, walking one foot in front of the other, across 50 feet in the air and we will only get to the other side once we lay our heads down to go to sleep to start over again tomorrow.

I hope he finishes everything soon. I hope both my mom and my brother keep cool. My brother especially likes to pick fights with my dad. Or maybe not “pick fights”, but challenge him on almost everything. Another thing I must remind him is in fact a waste of energy. But I know my brother suffers from this stuff too. Anxiety and hot-headedness. And he, at any moment, could get caught up in the negativity my dad is exuding. And he is still young, and…perhaps less of a seasoned Vulcan than I am. 🙂

My mom’s making meatballs. And they smell amazing. I just came back from a yoga class a little while ago (which benefited Relay For Life) and am going to take a shower and then laser-focus on my organizing my EP. It’s been causing me a lot of personal anxiety. And I noticed this after breathwork yesterday, when I went for a walk and how it kept coming up in my mind as this looming, unresolved thing. Which tells me that I should try to resolve the dis-ease I feel with it. I’m terrified that it’ll never happen, that I wasted time and money, that it’ll suck, that I suck, that I’m an idiot. I’m not sure why I feel so much doubt with this right now. But hopefully I can get back on the wagon once I evaluate everything.

scattered day recollection & muscle memory

It’s 10:45 and I am wide-awake. Which is SO strange because I only had one cup of coffee today and went to breathwork, which initially took a lot out of me, but then I had a second wind; I was inspired to go on a 50-minute walk, which rightfully tired me out – But then I had a third wind and watched Vice with my mom and brother, which was a wild ride. And then I got a fourth wind and now all my SPIN magazines are listed on eBay. And here I am, sitting in my room having completed that monotonous task. I hope people bid. I think these magazines deserve good homes. To real fans. I know I’m going to sleep well tonight because of breathwork, but right now, wow – I am awake.

I’m realizing I’m getting worse at responding to text messages. But maybe in a weird way that’s a good thing? Like, that I’m not so eagerly diverting my attention away from whatever I’m doing to answer? But maybe also bad because I’m forgetting to answer them when I do have time? I owe a friend a text back. Maybe I’ll do that after I’m done typing this.

I dusted my fan today and it was filthy. Here’s hoping my allergy-induced runny nose disappears overnight!

There’s a part of me wondering if I should discuss the breathwork experience I had today, but the words aren’t coming very easily so I think I’ll let it lie for now. I’m glad I went. It was good and cathartic and so so necessary. But even though I am awake, perhaps I do not have the energy to revisit my afternoon experience…

I think I may try and revisit that “Angeles” tutorial so I can perfect that.

Today I wanted to go through the rough mixes of songs for my EP so far and perhaps make a list of what needs to be done / changed, set goals, and deadlines. But I’m definitely too tired for that. I think I’ll try to accomplish that tomorrow.

I’m so excited because it was so wonderfully warm and springy today and I’m even doubly excited because I have some cold brew in the fridge. Can’t wait to drink that on ice tomorrow morning.

I think I might have to change the strings on my Les Paul and I’m having anxiety about it…It’s so beautiful, I don’t wanna fuck it up.

I know this post is a little choppy and all over the place, but my mind is a little scattered right now. I do try to have some sort of cohesion when I sit down to type, but sometimes that just doesn’t happen and I rather get the words out then hold them in, even if they’re not ideally organized.

I need to join a band. Every time I close my eyes I see myself performing.

My sweaty hands are the worst. But they’re me. And they’re a really difficult part of me to love. I struggle with it every day of my life.

I want to read and create more.

Today I had a thought that music is like math to me sometimes. I’m not sure if I can fully articulate why, but it’s something like, I can’t understand until I see the answer (the song) and see how it’s done (written/produced). I need to work off that framework and study it from multiple angles. I can’t just be given a problem if I don’t know the concept well enough. It needs to be auto-pilot, muscle-memorized, second-nature. And if it’s not, I’m fucked. Muscle memory is a majority of my existence and how I get by. For better or worse.

yoga cure & insurmountable productivity+satisfaction mountain

Yesterday evening I found myself in an emotionally strange mood. My energy was…weird. I felt mushad, self-pity, discontent, anxiety. I was upset with my choices that had made up my day – I snacked way too much, even though I tracked everything I got upset that I wasn’t satisfied; I wasn’t hungry, but continued to eat (to feel good, I guess). I wish I had been more productive on a whole; I have a whole desk with stuff on it that I need to go through because I’d like to eventually get rid of the desk. And I suppose I have been working on it…sort of. One of the piles on that desk is 3-4 years worth of music magazines I had subscribed to during that time, in pretty good shape too because they’ve mostly sat there untouched for 6-9 years. I’ve decided to post them all individually on eBay to see if anyone wants them, but that stuff takes so much time. And it really took a lot of me yesterday. It was very monotonous work. I think I posted around 20 yesterday, and there’s still more to do. (I might try to post a few before I head out to work today.)

I’m not sure if I’m PMS-ing…It does seem a little early, but I’ve been wondering what caused the weirdish mood I found myself in yesterday aside from my own seemingly unattainable goals. Because to be honest, I was productive yesterday. I got a load of laundry done, practiced “Angeles”, caught up on some TV, did dishes, emptied the dishwasher, went for a walk, shipped something I sold on eBay. I had made a small to-do list and actually checked off most of the things on it. I think I’ve been anxious about the songs I’ve been recording in the studio. Like, are they still good? Should I be doing anything differently? I think the idea that “this could all be for nothing” is a big fear in my mind, not just for this but for anything. That’s definitely present in my brain. I think I should reach out to Matt again sometime soon and see if I can book a day before May to get a song done (it’s called “All Your Books”) that doesn’t require drums. I think it’s just going to be me and the guitar.

But anyway, yeah so when my family sat down for dinner last night, I decided to skip (since I had eaten all day) and opted to go to yoga instead. And at first I was indecisive what I wanted more; To wallow in tasty steak my mom made and definitely going over my daily calorie limit? Or focusing on my breath, mind, body in yoga? But I knew I would feel better if I just bit the bullet and went to yoga. It took some self-determination, but you know what guys? I was so.right. I had such a great great great class and was so glad I went. My weird mood lifted and I walked out of that class feeling like a new person, feeling like everything was possible. I was energized and hopeful and positive. The transformation was unbelievable. I slept incredibly well last night and am not even sore today. A part of me wishes I got up early enough to go to another class this morning, but the other part is glad I slept in, getting the 8 hours I definitely needed after waking up at around 4:30-5 AM for most of the week because of work.

It sometimes really difficult for me to change my mood on a whim. Sometimes weird states of mind / depression / anxiety really pull me down and it’s like quicksand; It’s really difficult to climb out on self-volition alone. It’s easy to stay trapped. It’s something I struggle with on a regular basis. I feel so thankful, blessed, and grateful that yoga is something I have that pulls me out of that.

So this morning (well, now it seems it’s afternoon) I had some breakfast (Apples, sunbutter, and Special K that I might have overindulged on, but oh well) and caught up on the latest Star Trek: Discovery episode from last night, which was excellent. I am SO grateful to live in a present where Star Trek is on TV again. It gives me so much light and happiness…it’s difficult to articulate.

So anyway, now I”m listening to a monthly playlist my friend Stan made while I type this. I’m thinking my next move will be meditating in my room before I get dressed. It’s unexpectedly cold today, so who knows what I’ll wear to work today. Because of these various weather shifts, I haven’t been able to commit to switching out my closet / wardrobe yet (I have a small closet so around this time of year, I’ll bring the winter wear / sweaters to a downstairs closet and the summer / spring stuff upstairs to my closet). I think I heard it’s supposed to be 60 degrees all next week, so that’s definitely something to look forward to. Nice weather should help lift my sometimes-melancholy moods significantly.