100 Days Project

Karma: Buddhism for Assholes

This is a project that's been on my backburner for about two years. So I'm writing everyday for the next 100. In the process I hope to find my way back to my voice, back to my life and back to my practice.
Here's to shaking off Asshole 2.0.

I spent the last few months in the  bad city not doing much beyond going to dance class and making art. I knew I was leaving and I just didn’t have it in me to make much effort anymore. I’d worked so hard for the previous four years that I was spent.

Now that I’m back in The Good City, I’m still dragging my heels a little socially. Or, a lot. At first I was so happy to be back that I was super motivated. I was going everywhere, fixing up my apartment. Going and going and going.

And then I hit The Lull. I spent the last few weekends kind of feeling sorry for myself. Like I didn’t have friends, didn’t have things to do. The One From the Past had gone MIA (as usual). So me and my pity party just sat around and wallowed at how great everyone else’s lives were and how miserable mine was. (There were legitimate issues: my health was so unpredictable that I was literally cancelling all plans I made and then bored to tears when there was nothing to do.)

I couldn’t make sense of how lonely I felt. Because I’ve never really felt lonely – since high school and excepting the time I was married. I’ve always thought it’s impossible to really experience loneliness until you feel isolated when you’re with someone.

This went on for some time.

Until I started noticing things. I have friends – a huge number of people I’d been friendly or close with before I moved hadn’t gone anywhere. I still have a few friends from The Bad City and I’ve made new friends since I moved.

That’s when I realized the problem (if there was one) was me.

I wasn’t making much effort to get in touch with the old crew – and my unpredictable health was a part of that, but not as much as I’d been telling myself. Yes, I was upset about TOFP, but that was nothing new. I just had to start making an effort. Everyone had been really great and supportive about me moving back. But that was apparently not good enough for me. They should have read my mind. They should have shown up at my door.

Soon after, I realized I was still just a little broken and worn out from TBC and moving and change and health fits and starts. I just had to let myself take whatever time I needed, without pressure to get back to living again.

Just like that – a little introspection, a little time watching my thoughts and a whole lot of not beating myself up – and I’m not lonely anymore. The best part is that when I snap out of it (probably in a couple weeks), I have all these people in my life to help celebrate.

Day 9:

On Loneliness