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What now

May 29, 2020 Karianne 5 min read No Comments

I have a friend who had her whole life planned out. She knew where she’d go to college and she did it. She knew where she wanted a job and she did that too. Me? I flew on the wind with no plan or concern for the time that passed.

Last November, for the first time in my life, I came up with an actual timeline of goals and milestones for the year ahead. I would graduate in December/January, continue to rock my job as an art director, be an event photographer for a conference in April, move from my current place in May because the landlord wanted to sell, and move back in with my g-ma while I applied for jobs out of state. My to-the-moon dream was to be hired by an animation studio and living in California by June or maaaaybe July.

I now understand what people mean when they say dreams are “like dust in the wind.”

Like the stock market, I can’t decide if I’m ready to grow or quit.

Pretty regularly the pressure of existence boggles my mind. I’ll lay on my bed and wonder, “Why did my cells have to form in such a way that I have to think and interact with others and have a job and eat food and fall in love?”

Leafs have a much simpler life.

Ever since the you-know-what hit, I thought I was mentally and emotionally doing good. Like most of the country, I gained weight because the kitchen was so close and I was so bored. (Gum is now an essential item in my purse.) But I was one of the few who could do their job from home, which meant I got to give my dog ear scratches between emails. It was nice. My life actually improved under lockdown.

But deep, deeeeeep down I was as depressed and scared as everyone else. Little, every day tasks became overwhelming. I left my calendar on April until May was half over because I didn’t have the will to change it. For about 3-weeks I moved a basket of CLEAN laundry from my bed—where it sat during the day—to the floor in front of my desk—where it sat when I needed my bed.

3 weeks. That’s 21 days the mound of clean laundry wandered around my room. Eventually it became a mix of clean and dirty clothes (clean clothes sank to the bottom and dirty clothes on top). It was not an efficient system, and inefficiency is my biggest pet peeve.

It took 3 weeks until I finally did something about it.

Although overcast skies are my favorite, that day was the first sunny day we’d seen in a long time. I opened the widow, let a warm breeze waft through, and folded my clothes…the clean ones. As someone who doesn’t care about wrinkles in clothes, these were so wrinkly that I even noticed.

As soon as I tucked the basket back in my closet with ALL dirty clothes, my floor-space was reclaimed and it felt like a new room. I didn’t know I felt bad until I started to feel better.

Is there anything you’re putting off?

If it could, the pile of papers beside would blow a raspberry…PBBBBT! Like my laundry basket, I continue to move this stack of junkmail/important mail/coupons/things I need to think about from my desk to my bed.

I know if I just take 20 minutes and go through it I’ll feel better. I’ll be able to reclaim the space and things like a global pandemic won’t be as heavy.

I could actually feel good.

Part of me feels guilty for wanting to feel good. Is happiness the end-all reason for living? Most of my heroes died as martyrs so that better not be it.

Honestly, I’m not sure what the purpose of life is. I know there is one, and I’ve heard a lot of theories, so I’m sure I’ll figure it out one day. Maybe on that last day.

If you’re reading this like, “I waited this long for a new post this is what I get?”

Yep. Because pondering life’s big questions and my place in the universe is where I’m at right now.

Ever since I first watched it, I’ve enjoyed Bo Burnham’s song “Can’t Handle This,” but I relate to it even more watching it now. It’s a parody of one of Kanye’s rants. In the first half he says s*** and makes a crude reference, but the video below is set to start at my favorite section. (He does call himself a pussy so maybe don’t listen to this super loudly if you’re around kids because they’ll latch on to that one word and repeat it forever.)

Part of me loves you. Part of me hates you.
Part of me needs you. Part of me fears you.

Bo Burnham

As a writer, I’m jealous that I didn’t come up with that string of words.

That’s how I feel when I sit down to write. I want to make things that help you, things that spare you from pain, make you smile, make you look at the day with a different perspective and restored vigor.

But it’s all so paralyzing, especially when I’m still going through something.

I like to write about things that happened in high school or 2016. Stuff that was awhile ago. COVID has forced me to look at my life right now. And there’s not much to say.

I’m not proud of where I am or who I am. I’m trying to figure out if it’s something I can fix or something I have to live with. It’s not depression. It’s more like grieving dead dreams and goals.

Where have I heard that before?…Oh yeah!

I’ve lived long enough to see myself become the villain Squidward.

As COVID wrecks and rearranges so much of my life, I’m going to try to focus on the small achievements—like folding laundry—and not let the blaring failures/missed opportunities take the whole show.

Meet the author
Founder - Art Director - Student | Website

Book progressBucket list

Karianne is the founder of Windmill Ways. She plays the cello professionally and currently works as an Art Director for a charity. Because she loves animated shows and kids movies, she finished her BFA in 3D Animation with the class of 2020. Her dream vacation would be just staying home, but "home" being a glamorous cabin somewhere in the mountains surrounded by forest.

Favorite band: Lord Huron
Favorite book: This Present Darkness
Favorite quote: "Get all the advice and instruction you can, so you will be wise the rest of your life. You can make many plans, but the Lord’s purpose will prevail." Proverbs 19:20-21 (NLT)

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