I don't know if it's too soon for another life update; to be honest, I haven't been doing a whole lot since my birthday gathering and starting my new job at the beginning of April. If you don't really go on too many adventures or you stay inside your own head too much, it doesn't really make for interesting blog posts. Maybe that's why I tried to branch away from my standard blogging fare lately: I decided to write reviews of books I read over the last few months (I feel like I'd be horning in on other people's racket by regularly book blogging, though), and used the format of unsent letters to work through some feelings I've held onto for a little while...I'll admit that one book I reviewed uncorked a lot of the emotions I deal with in the other post.

I am trying to take better care of myself these days. During my last long weekend, I found myself so tired and unsocial, but a project like making slow-cooker chili boosted my mood in time for the work week. Things like limiting my time on social media and cleaning the apartment last weekend seemed to help too. I've started bullet journaling to try to bring a little more order into my scatterbrain. I replaced all the years-expired spices in my pantry (thank God for Bulk Barn). I got my dosage adjusted on my meds (15mg of escalitopram, up from 10mg).

I actually was somewhat social on Friday night: a few good folks had birthdays that week and were celebrating at Charlie's. I didn't know if I was going to be up to leaving the apartment that night; lately it seems like the walking and the bus rides seem like much more effort than they used to be, and by the time I get home from work, I have little interest in doing either. I'm glad I went, though I was a little more in observation mode at first, but as more people came trickling in, a few of which I hadn't seen in person in far too long, I felt more a part of the evening. I bowed out after a few hours due of a mixture of exhaustion and wanting to catch the bus before the ones that go to my neighborhood stop running, but by the time I left I had  a couple of beers, some good conversations and a few hugs; all welcome. 

I ended up sleeping away most of the weekend after that night. It may be my body's getting used to the new dosage, or that I shouldn't have had those beers, or that I just need more time to replenish my "spoons" as I get older, but I also wonder if solitude has become my natural state, and any effort to change that gets resisted by my own body.

This is the kind of stuff that makes me wonder how well I would be able to handle a serious relationship with someone. I have these windows where I can feel human and interact with others; I worry that if I'm in a position where I'm living with a partner, that's going to mean they're going to have experience the me that exists outside these windows of humanity. It's easier to retreat to your own space and minimize unnecessary contact with others when you live alone. I need my space, but I wonder if that's keeping my personal relationships from growing much deeper. Part of me would love to be have the level of intimacy some of my coupled friends have with their partners (one pair of whom just moved out to a converted church), but part of me wonders if I'm capable of it.

One thing that came up in conversation on Friday really stuck with me: if you tell someone you're "good" or "fine" when you really aren't you run out of things to talk about pretty fast. Truly connecting with another person beyond the surface requires being open about some of the less pleasant, messier feelings. That's another window right there: if I don't know someone well enough, I don't want to delve too deeply into the real talk; If I know someone too well, I don't want to worry them with it. It's like I'm always looking for the sweet spot to build something with someone new, but at the expense of my existing relationships.

I've long been aware of my "drinking window": without anything to loosen me up, I'm too shy and reserved to make conversation, but if I'm aware I've had too much, I try to pull away before I make an ass of myself or get too loosely emotional. I even have an "attraction window": if I don't really know them well enough, I'm too intimidated or the walls I keep around myself are too high up to act on it, and if I know them too well, I like having them in my life too much to potentially fuck it up by bringing sex into the relationship.

Maybe this is the kind of thing that needs to be explored further with therapy.