-How are you?
-I don’t know.
No, really, I don’t. This is the real question, not the form answered by “Fine, thanks,” and I don’t know the answer to it. I can only pay my gas bill by withdrawing from savings, which I can’t do indefinitely. And I was not even thinking of looking for work.
-How do you feel when you notice that?
Again I don’t know, but where I go is into puzzling things out. All these long blog posts about trans issues. I could stop blogging quite so much and decide that finding a way to support myself was the most important thing for me. I listen to my voice changing as I tell you that.
I get a lot of self-respect from writing, and little pings of dopamine from looking at my blog statistics- how many posts have had over sixty or over a hundred views, say- and yet there are variable rewards from considering stats quite so often, which makes them more addictive. I chase the pings of dopamine, which is well-dodgy.
Then on work- the jobcentre could take away all my income, probably not before October but possibly thereafter.
I don’t know. Which is worse? Writing job application forms and getting interviews and not getting the job or writing job application forms and not getting the interview.
-So the writing helps you to feel useful. Purposeful.
-It gives me an interest. Thinking things through, expressing things. As indeed do some Labour party activities.
Sometimes things become too problematic and I stop doing them. Like job applications. After this conversation, I have put in an application, as before finishing it about eleven pm before the closing date, not doing it well. That was how I psyched myself up to completing it. I hated it. Essential requirements- well, not really, possibly at a stretch… Probably, if I’d nerved myself to do it earlier, then read it over later to tighten it up, I would have sent in something better.
And it was a struggle to do it. I hated every moment of it, kept giving up on it and coming back to it, and this was after Yearly Meeting where I got lots and lots of affirmation. And before I did it I sought and got more affirmation.
So, how was I? So angry, despairing and terrified that I had managed to be unconscious of these feelings, but that required mindless distractions. This will do no good, I thought. This is pointless. And it is horrible, because I expend this effort pointlessly. And I hate saying I am this good, I have done this, and getting judged on it and found wanting. Yes, yes, they have someone else for the job and probably I could have been appointed if they did not have this better candidate. I still feel not good enough.
In other news, all that water trickling down the light fitting- we know where it’s coming from. At last, weeks after I reported the problem, the man came to repair the gutters. He did so badly, such that the point above the leak is lower than the joint to the down-pipe, but at least there is no gap in the gutter. And I was right- the hole in the gutter was why more water was coming in.
It’s coming in through the wall of the upper storey. The landlord was right that it was not coming in through the flat roof, which is properly sealed. Neither he nor I made the obvious deduction that it’s coming through the wall, nor did the agent, and I feel they have a lot more experience of property so have less excuse. Then another man went up on the flat roof and knocked on the wall, which sounded thin and hollow. There’s a crack above the hollow bit. Obvious really, once it’s pointed out to you.
So many irritations! Water ingress, landlord stupidity-
not enough money
and the only way out getting a job which I can’t see how I can get. So I seek out any distraction, and feel wretched.