Last year, I did an exercise where I forced myself to write a blog post every day for 30 days. There were days when I struggled to come up with content, but on the whole I was glad to have done it. I don't know what egged me on this time, but I figured I might as well force myself to post once a day for every day this month. Last year's run was "30 in 30"; since October has 31 days, this is going to be "31 in 31".
I didn't like September. August was exhausting, but I could at least blame the new job, and I managed to get a few photo shoots and social outings in during that month. September was considerably tighter, both in terms of finances and sociability. I was stuck in my head, couldn't really focus, and felt myself growing more distant from a lot of people over the last few weeks. Friends. Co-workers. I had the overwhelming feeling that I was working to prolong a status quo that stopped working for me two years ago instead of building the kind of life I wanted.
This feeling started almost as soon as the month began. I think I sensed it the day I reached out to my friend Laura and ended up going to her place for dinner, beer and a movie. We discussed the need for risk and willingness to let one's self get hurt in order to find happiness, but my margins are too thin for that right now. When I went to a housewarming on Labour Day, my thoughts distracted me too much to give myself over to the spirit of the party. I had patio beer, went to a food truck rally, and saw George Elliott Clarke speak at the Word On The Street festival, but I was preoccupied with career frustrations and overthinking the connection I felt with someone a while back. This drained me.
I had won tickets to the Atlantic Film Festival closing night party, but almost immediately after winning them, I had second thoughts about going; combined with a lack of money for drinks and the 40-minute bus rides each way, it became less appealing the more I thought about it. Whatever half-assed attempt I made at finding a taker for the extra ticket was more along the lines of "someone needs to drag me out of my apartment" than genuine interest in going. In retrospect I probably should have refused them, but I picked them up just in case I were to change my mind. I eventually tried to find takers for both tickets, but eventually just tore them up and threw them in the garbage. If I had gone to some of the screenings, had something decent to wear, and didn't have to take practical matters into consideration, it may have been fun, but I just had the feeling I would have felt awkward and out-of-place all night.
If September's theme was my thoughts crowding things, activities and people out of my life, I hope October's involves making space for them again.