As the spectacular crapshow that was 2020 grinds to its inglorious end, and life keeps going on and adjusting to whatever the hell else gets thrown at us, I find myself thinking about that most duplicitous of virtues: hope.
After all, without hope in some form, not much happens. The combination of hope and ambition can lead to some breathtaking accomplishments. It’s one of the things that makes us different, makes us capable of doing more than just reacting to whatever happens.
Without the ability to believe that things can be better than they are, who would try to change anything? As long as people can hope for a better life, they will work to try to make it. Even in the grimmest situations, people will hold on and hope.
They’ll also pray, and plan, and work towards their goals.
The problem with that – and I should confess at this point that I do have issues with depression (who am I kidding? My issues have raised entire legions of issues) and I’m horribly pessimistic. My natural inclination is to assume the worst and then in a fit of perverse self-sabotage try to prove it. I’m working on not doing that to myself, but so far apart from having held jobs for over 7 years twice running, I’m not too sure I’m succeeding (the jobs bit is significant – for a long time there I was convinced I had the anti-Midas touch when it came to employment. Either I couldn’t get work, or something catastrophic would happen to my employer. Or me. Keeping one position for 7 years before a layoff in the midst of one of the economic messes after the company had 11 months straight losses was something of a minor miracle to me. Keeping the one I got after that for 7 years going on 8 is almost enough for me to believe I’ve beaten the anti-Midas curse).
So part of me sees what’s happening and looks for all the positives and finds reasons to hope all will eventually be well. The rest of me looks at that part and metaphorically goes “What the hell are you on?” At which point my sarcastic side points out that the veritable pharmacopeia keeping me more or less stable does include some interesting psychotropic drugs that do not have much information about long term dosage. And my ruthlessly practical side adds that when it’s a choice between drug-free and non-functional and drugged up with probable interesting side effects as time goes by but able to function more or less normally (or at least well enough to maybe pass for normal), I’ll take the drugs, please.
Narcolepsy-induced chronic sleep deprivation depression sucks. It also plays hell with a whole lot of other things, including pretty much every organ in the body, which means I’m gradually adding more medications as more bits of me start to crap out. Such is life.
There are times when I utterly envy the cats. A life of sleeping 20 hours out of every 24 and nobody minds? Hell yes (As I write this, Westley is curled up in the kitty bed behind my monitor, while Midnight is snuggled up beside the heater. I have no idea where Buttercup is, and probably don’t want to know, since kitty rampages generally follow someone finding a hidden kitteh. Not that she’ll stay invisible for too long. It’s dark outside, which means she’ll come pestering to get us into bed with her. Sleeping with the humans is almost as important as making sure the humans do their business properly, after all, and never mind the effect of having strategically placed felines making movement almost impossible on the bed).
Anyway, have a picture of Buttercup on her cardboard claw scratcher thing (which is significantly more shredded now than it was a couple of months ago when I took this picture), and may 2020 be the worst year any of us ever have.