When I Need A Pick Me Up, by my friend Ryan King

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Generalized Anxiety Disorder ... We Hateses Itttt

Yeah, so, I've definitely failed at some daily adult living skills in the last few months as it pertains to my career. I've really REALLY let the ball plummet when it comes to my day job, and my day job boss called me on it. I had no choice but to admit it to myself and come to a decision.

In the past, I would have tucked my tail and ran. I would have shriveled under the disapprovement with self-loathing and an abysmal sense of doom. I would have beaten myself up worst than if I were wearing red in a Crips' neighborhood.

But I've learned a lot. And I have to say I've learned it through therapy. The therapy that I give to other people. Because I've started to listen to myself. I've come away from sessions shaking my head and wondering how it is that I can dispense such counsel to others and not myself. How can I teach couples how to fight when I've been running away from relationships in terror of conflict? How can I counsel men about commitment when I've never been successful at it myself? How can I counsel people how to combat anxiety when I've been ruled by it?

These damn meds seem to give me the ability to practice what I preach. Without that feeling of dread in the pit of my stomach, I've been able to override self-condemnation and the long practiced coping mechanism of hiding my head in the nearest sand dune, thereby letting the world pass on--something I've done "successfully" for 38 years. As in successfully never learning how to kiss passionately, let alone learn how to make love. While this is only an aspect of social functioning and not the entirety of it, I'm going to say that I have been suffering from Generalized Anxiety Disorder because it did disable me from operating in normal society. Ask anyone if it's normal to be a 44-year old virgin. See what answer you get.

So now the time for nevers is finished. I'm on the other side of the summit now. I've got the key and I've tested it out in the lock. And it works. I can chat up a fairly desirable woman. I can curry her favor to meet me at a party. And I sure will ask her out to somewhere else when the party ends. For food, dessert, or just kissing lessons.

And to bookend this post properly, I can own up to my mistakes at work and not be ready to hand in my resignation. I can continue working with the knowledge that I screwed up, and even parry with my boss' extreme displeasure and disappointment in me. If he fires me, then I get fired. Problem solved. Mea culpa, man. I get what I get. NYC-bound careers here I come. But if my boss wants to accept my apology and let me move on and correct my laziness, my disfocus, my poorly handled juggle of two careers--

--then let's do this.

It may have taken me 44 years to realize (minus the obligatory 18 years of honorary childhood), but I'm a grown-ass man.

Time to act like one.

8 comments:

GrizzBabe said...

The best advice anyone ever gave me on kissing was this -- "Kissing is not something you do; it's something you feel." So when The Boyfriend and I kissed for the first time (to be honest, that was the first time I had kissed someone ever), I made it a point to kiss the way I felt. And it worked. Something to remember should you find yourself in that situation in the near future.

The Neighbor said...

IU totally agree with Grizz - it's not a skill, it's a feeling. You pay attention to how you feel and you can pretty easily tell what's going on with your partner - it's hard to fake a kiss. The same is true about making love. Sure, there are some skills you can develop, but for the most part, it varies from partner to partner, and you have to relearn every partner as though you were a virgin all over again, only with time, it gets less and less anxious.

This is not something you study a book for. You just do it.

Alan said...

You guys are the best.

Shades of Scorpio said...

Big kudos for accepting responsibility for what you think is your part of things!! A lot of people, even in a cushy job like mine, have nerve to complain about the place and never see where they've flawed anywhere. It's unreal. Azrael wants to say something to her boyfriend, Alan - Who's a big boy? Whooooooo's a BIG BOY???!!! Nom Nom Nom!!!!

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Alan said...

Shades, tell Azrael for me, "The BELLY! THE BELLLLLLLLY!!!!" scrunchscrunchscrunch! Meanwhie, yeah. All the blogging I did during daytime hours? Totally wrong of me. I had paperwork to do, and I neglected it. I excused myself because of the 12 hour workdays, and one day off a week. But I take the paycheck, so I need to do the work they pay me for. If I were writing the checks, I'd damn sure expect the same, no?

That Xanax-bot is one intelligent-ass spammer. How'd it get through my word verf? Don't I have one?

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GrizzBabe said...

Merry Christmas, Alan!