Goodbye

I believe my dad would have just wanted me to be happy. He’s gone now and things will be different, but I believe we can make it.

Connection–it’s an important thing among hoomans. And I happen to be a hooman so… But yeah, it’s really important, and I think it’s possibly key to a happy life. And I want to live a happy life, for Dad. So I guess I’ll continue to work on the walls that I put up, on my opening up issues, and all those such things. I met some relatives today, and maybe we’ll get closer–something that I feel ambivalent about, but, well, we’ll see.

Farewell, Dad. I hope you rest in peace.

I’m Fine. I’m ok.

I never wanted to get too close, afraid that I could feel in case you left. And I do feel, but I don’t want to cry in front of her. She says she’s glad I’m being strong. “I’m fine,” I tell myself. Because I am. I’m fine. And tomorrow, a possible decision, majority rule; will I be the minority?

It’s fine. We’ll get through this. Just try to make it through this week. It’ll be fine. I’m fine. We will be fine.

This Year has been…

(What follows is by no means meant to downplay the effects that the year’s events have had on people. This is merely my experience.)

…a benefit to those with social anxiety. I have had an excuse not to leave the house. There’s no more, “Get out there and connect with people,” but an encouragement to stay away from people, and I do not have to be told twice to do that.

I feel like over the past several months, I’ve been able to challenge myself and improve from my own home. It’s like getting out of my comfort zone while being in my comfort zone. Though I might often feel uncertain of myself, my confidence in my abilities has increased. Even in the uncertainty, there’s at least the growth mindset: If I don’t know or think I’m not good at something, I’m convinced that I can learn or get better at it.

If others don’t want to stay inside, then I don’t want them to have to stay inside. If being inside and isolated negatively impacts their health, then I want them to be able to go out and mingle. Me, on the other hand—I’m fine staying inside. And maybe the methods of operation as of yet will help to establish the legitimacy and practicality of remote work. If I don’t start a PhD program, maybe by next year I’ll have a decent job. That would be pretty significant for me.

Reflection

Eight years ago around this time (September), I tried to end myself. What’s changed since then?

I don’t feel as terribly depressed. Though the existential crises can still be difficult, I’m more or less acquainted with them.

I’ve learned that I have social anxiety. I’d get this weird feeling either during or after being around people and it really sucked and I didn’t know why. I just knew that I didn’t quite so much like interacting with people. The not-very-good feeling can still happen, but now I know that it’s anxiety. It’s helpful to have a name for it.

Relating to the anxiety, I had a college internship at the time and I felt like I hated it. I didn’t like the people—or at least one person in particular. She got to me, honestly. And I didn’t like the work environment. Interestingly, I’m currently in college again with an internship. Before the pandemic, I would go in person once a week and I did have a lot of anxiety about it, a lot of it to do with impostor syndrome and generally like I had no idea what I was doing. The environment was nice and the people were way nicer and more mature though. Since then, my confidence has grown and I feel a lot more capable. It’s also been awesome that I’ve gotten to improve my self-confidence from the comfort of my own home. Sure, even the video meetings might give me anxiety, but it’s tolerable. And again, I have a name for it. Getting drunk/high on herbal tea has helped too. Valerian: “nature’s Valium.”

I suppose another change is that over the years, I’ve come to consider my parents more in the decision of whether to commit suicide. I still have thoughts, but I think about my parents, even if I have felt annoyed that it holds me back. I no longer try to rationalize my way out of caring about their feelings and I just accept the fact that I do care… even if I am rolling my eyes in the process.

Sure, I can still have existential depression. Sure, there’s still anxiety. Sure, I still think about suicide. But I feel like things are better now. I’ve kicked detrimental habits, I’ve gained self-confidence, I’m at least a little bit less perfectionistic and less hard on myself. Eight years ago, I attempted suicide because I felt like I wanted to escape. I can still feel that way, but now I can get sloppy drunk on herbal tea and watch dumb YouTube videos and pass out.

Perfectionism

Perhaps there are two kinds of perfection: objective and subjective.

Objective perfection is theoretically achievable. The standards are measureable and unchanging. A perfect score on a test, for example. If there is a maximal achievable score of 100, then a perfect score is possible, and perfection in this sense is obtainable.

Subjective perfection, on the other hand, involves arbitrary standards, and those standards can constantly change. In this kind of perfection, one’s standards are limited only by one’s imagination. Something bigger and better can always be imagined. Though 1 can always be added to a number to get a bigger number, infinity can never be counted to, and subjective perfection can be like trying to count to or equate oneself to infinity; therefore, it can be unachievable.

Reconciliation

I can be either

  • Literal –> metaphorical
  • Logical/reasoning –> emotional/unreasoning
  • Scientific –> artful
  • All –> nothing

Can one reason to the point of seeming unreasonableness? Can one be so literal, one becomes metaphorical (or vice versa)? A circular spectrum.

And to consider that all itself contains nothing as well—a set of everything includes the empty set… but does it include itself? A kind of infinite regress (the set includes itself which includes itself which includes itself…). And perhaps science can be art and art a science.

Whether because of vague definitions or limits of words or arbitrary lines drawn between concepts, these are lines that can be so easily blurred, stepped over, questioned.

Perhaps I can blur the lines to find some compromise between my either/or, to somehow unite them.

A Response to the Person in My Dream

Background

So I just woke up from this dream. Um, I’ll try to explain it.

This girl asked me if I still disagreed with women selling themselves (as she put it). Apparently there were some YouTube comments saying that I had a weird facial expression when I would watch or see some women doing things like… dancing or something (Look, dreams make way more sense as you’re dreaming them.), so these commenters assumed that I disapproved. Also certain YouTubers like iHasCupquake/Yammy (I don’t know—I guess they blended together as one person.) were talking about this, and the comments section of their videos were where those comments about me appeared.

So here’s my response to the dream person who asked me if I still disagreed.

Response

First of all, why do you believe this speculation? How can these commenters possibly know what I think? Yet you take that as gospel. Maybe I would have some weird look on my face when I’d watch girls dance provocatively or… whatever. I don’t know why I was watching these people in the first place, BUT just because I have a funny look on my face doesn’t mean that I think, “DIS BAD AND WRONG.” Maybe I was daydreaming at the time. Or maybe my face was just doing that thing where I don’t know what it’s doing. In fact, I probably have a questionable look on my face RIGHT NOW.

Also, it’s interpretation which can be misinterpretation. People could interpret a facial expression in some way and be completely wrong about it. People could assume that I’m thinking something because of an expression I’m making and that assumption could be off the mark.

I tried to tell you, over and over, that I don’t care if some women want to “sell themselves” as you put it. It’s them, their bodies, their decision in the way they express themselves. I could NOT care any less. But, no matter how much I would try to tell my side of it, you would speak over me! And I get that you were recording at the time—gotta put it up on YouTube and let your opinion be heard, let people know that YOU WILL NOT STAND FOR THIS. That’s fine, but this is ANYTHING BUT a productive discussion. You don’t let anyone else hear it straight from the horse’s mouth. You refuse to listen to what the horse has to say. Such a one-sided discussion is not a discussion at all.

Furthermore, I felt that listening to you was a waste of time. Your allegations did not apply to me because I didn’t think what you were accusing me of thinking. There was no correcting or informing me, no persuading me to amend my ways as there was nothing to amend. This one-sided conversation was, for me, a waste of time, and perhaps too a waste of breath as no one seemed to believe what I said anyway.

Second, why does it matter what I think? Why do you even care so much about what I think!? If you want to do something like dance or whatever, then do it and never mind what I think about it. Why and how the heck did what I potentially think become such an issue?

In conclusion, 1) you’re fully believing speculation and others’ assumptions, and 2) you seem to care a lot about what one person thinks… or COULD BE thinking. Maybe it would be helpful for you to consider both of these issues.

Constructs

Seemingly, to be free, one must become enslaved. If one has no self-control, no discipline, then one may feel free to do what one pleases but can become slave to addictions and the undesirable consequences of actions. If one does have self-control, then one could see oneself as free of the consequences that would result otherwise, but a slave to discipline, of constraints.

Even if one has the freedom to decide, one is not free of the consequences.

Perhaps this paradox results because we’re trying to fit a preconceived conception to reality. Perhaps freedom is made up, or a state of mind, or a made up state of mind. An idea, a construct much like any other idea.

It’s like an ocean that doesn’t exist, yet you’re swimming in it… or at least trying to swim in it.

Or maybe, in the case of freedom, it’s merely a case of having to sacrifice freedom of one thing to gain freedom of another, and perhaps there is no absolute freedom.

But constructs in general—shaping our reality, binding and constraining us.

Mattering and not mattering, meaning and no meaning, purpose and no purpose—all at the same time.

Maybe they (concepts like purpose) don’t exist but inside our minds, and outside our minds there’s no such thing as any of it. And so it seems like a paradox when you try to think outside of it; the constructs don’t necessarily apply to what really is on the outside, outside of our minds so to say, outside of ourselves. Because they’re not actually real; they’re constructs.

When something seems like a paradox, maybe it really isn’t a paradox. Maybe it just seems that way because there are constructs and then there’s reality, and our constructs don’t necessarily directly correlate with reality.

So basically, all this shit isn’t real, but we think that it is. And then when we try to reconcile it with the outside, with reality, it seems like a paradox. But the truth is it’s just a construct, bro.

How do you escape them, the constructs? Would you want to? Maybe life would be better without them. Maybe it would be worse, or at least less convenient, or just not like it is today. Or maybe no one could understand you, and you’d have no opinions. Maybe you wouldn’t even exist. Dude, what if we’re all constructs? Omg none of us are real.

I think in a way, we kind of are constructs. We perceive ourselves and others in a certain way and… I think perceptions and constructs are correlated.

In conclusion, what’s real? Do I exist?? Do you??? Ahhhh.

Derp! eXistential Musings

Dextromethorphan used to be my jam.

The last time I had any was around December of last year I think, breaking maybe a two year streak of abstinence. In the past, it seemed to lift my depression (and it usually did before the subsequent crash), so I thought it could help then as well.

That last time in December (or November or whenever it was), I learned that there’s really nothing that different about my thinking when I’ve taken it compared to when I haven’t. My thoughts aren’t really any more deep or revelational. The only difference is that, when I’m not on it, I don’t usually have 20 million browser tabs open or think that I’m Jesus, the universe, and everything; and I don’t watch the Teen Titans and think that I’m one of the characters and that Cyborg is telling me a special message.

DXM was fun in the past—and sometimes scary and sometimes questionable and sometimes just not fun at all, but I regret nothiiiing—but it’s like bro… it’s all just the same more or less, bro.

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