shine up that shovel

Hello from the tail end of another weird weekend. Just finished Zooming with Erin, which was the highlight. I'm over caffeinated but sun sleepy, having spent way too much time at the pool today. But the pool is a novelty I'm not used to yet, since it's only just opened back up. That, along with the fitness room, are amenities I've been paying for since I moved in a year ago -- right when they became off-limits due to Covid. Cashing in now, as much as I can. 

It's been a weird weekend because while Los Angeles is back to normal, I still haven't done anything or gone anywhere. For one thing all of my friendlets are gone or wifed up and unavailable, and for another I'm trying to be smart with money. Also I'm suddenly unsure what to do with my free time. I'm so used to holing up at home I've forgotten how to life. I'm like an animal that's been cooped up then suddenly finds its cage open, only to nervously stay put.

I did get a ticket for an event next week. Coworkers have been going out and I listen, wistfully, to their tales of exotic travels to places like crowded bars and beach parties and I pine to be out in the mix, too. So I did another scan of all my favorite haunts and lo and behold, there's an EDM show next week that will be perfect. I grabbed a ticket and the butterflies hit immediately when I realized that instead of having two and a half months to prepare to go back in, I had nine days. The anxiety was a surprise. I thought I'd feel nothing but excitement. 

So I sat down and asked myself, Self, what is your problem? You have been dreaming of this day for a year and a half. And Self and I had a good talk, and now I understand. I don't think I'm the only one with a little bit of pandemic PTSD. And it doesn't help that I can't ease back into things in the company of friends. I'm solo. I'm also single, and it dawned on me that the last time I went out dancing alone, single, was a few weeks after I'd moved to K-town and escaped the insanity of living with my ex-boyfriend. I was in an absolute terrible state and I forced myself to go out for a change of scenery and energy. And that was the night I met Timo. And though that came to an end I am realizing that the same thing could very well happen again. 

I think my lockdown addled brain is not quite ready to grasp that the world really is mine again. I have been really sad and really stagnant for a long time. It was devastating to have three of my closest friends move away. Then Kenny bounced out too, and it took me six fucking months to get over him. Six months. On top of that I've worked an absolute bonkers amount the past year and a half in an industry everyone knows is now woefully understaffed, considered somewhat essential, I guess, but definitely stressful as all living fuck. All I know right now is high-stress work and my own company. That's it. No wonder that when the doors to the world are being thrown open again I'm timid about walking through them. It really is a kind of PTSD.

But it's going to be okay. I'm out of practice, but I haven't forgotten everything. I haven't forgotten what it's like to get ready, grab my phone and my ID, and skip through downtown Los Angeles on my way to listen to the best music producers in the world, just blocks from my front door. I haven't forgotten what it's like to lose myself in that music and feel so unbelievably alive. I haven't forgotten what it's like to connect with strangers over that music, to smile and laugh. I haven't forgotten what it's like to slip out almost at the end of the night, sweaty and buzzing and empowered by having just taken myself on an incredibly fun date. 

Eight days until I start burying 2020 -- and half of 2021 -- under better memories, and reconnecting to the me that got through them.