What an intro, eh?
First of all, I wanted to stay up all night to see in the day, and I did. Unfortunately, the actuality did not match the vision. I invited a bunch of people over for dinner on Sunday, starting at 10pm, but for various reasons they were all unable to stay until sunrise. It was a Sunday, which is hardly an auspicious day to invite people to stay up all night with you, but still...the result was that they all went home by 2:30 am and I ended up sitting by myself in my living room watching the sun come up at 6 am. Not the vision I conjured up when I first said to myself, I want to stay up all night!
So the day started off badly. And I think it could never pull itself up from that
beginning. I went to bed shortly after sunrise, and when I woke up I found myself filled with depression. I lay there thinking, Who will want me now? Who will ever take a second look
at me? My body will now start to deteriorate, and at my age now the only men I'll have to choose from will be bald, or have children, or be settled and boring. What 31-year-old will want a 40-year-old? In any case any man who would be interested in me will be unable to have sex twice a day, EVER, so I'll end up alone for the rest of my life and/or sexually unsatisfied. As you can see from these thoughts, I was not entirely rational. But I was rational enough in one part of myself to recognize that I was being irrational, and the rational part of myself suggested that I get up and have a look at myself naked in the mirror, because I look quite good naked these days. I thought to myself that I could get up and look at myself, and then I'd see that many avenues were still open to me (as it were). But I knew, even with the rational part of myself, that if I did that I'd just stand there, look at myself, and think, How long can this possibly last?
I admit that I was, and am, distressed to find how thoroughly and unknowingly I've absorbed the messages of women's magazines - messages I've always consciously recognized as nonsensical and pernicious. But obviously a part of me has come to believe that it's all over once you're out of your thirties, and also that I should now be moving on to wearing turtlenecks and pearls and "tasteful" scarves, rather than listening to Super Furry Animals and trying to see if I can get tickets to see Reverend and the Makers while I'm in England. And this part of me worries that I am somehow desperately trying to hold on to my youth, that because I still like to discover new bands and want to see Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay I must be a saddo loser who can't bear to grow up.
So I am all at sea with myself these past three days. And I know I wouldn't have had this reaction if there weren't other factors: I live somewhere I hate, and it's boiling hot all the time, and I am uncertain about my whole future, including a relationship I don't know how to resolve, and I lost a relationship I still miss, and I am alone (really, most of the time; metaphorically, all the time), and my life seems to be inching by, with every inch jam-packed with tedium and hatefulness. So of course the rational part of me is aware that most of what I felt on the morning of my birthday, and continue to feel to a lesser degree now, is silly and irrelevant. But there's still a part of me that's sad, if only because - whether I'm 40 or 30 or 72 - I hate the life I currently have.
What a way to start a new decade, huh? On the bright side, it really almost only can go up from here.
Next post more cheerful, I promise. When next I write, it will be from London, so all will be different.