2003-11-22 - 5:52 p.m.

A few weeks ago I was excited by the prospect of decompressing. At the time things were getting to just about the limit of what I could take. As I have said, my nerves at the time were so badly frayed that I physically trembled and was certain a very tangible short circuit of my nervous system was imminent. So, thinking about going away for a couple weeks, being able to relax far away from everything, was very appealing and was the only thing that got me through. And I did spend two weeks doing nothing but relaxing. I got very relaxed. I settled into a very calm state of mind. My mind was at ease, even my motions were fluid and languidly methodical. So I thought I was in a good state of being to return to life.

I was actually counting on that.

But I was, apparently, wrong.

I spent the day in tears today. At work. A waitress who was perpetually speaking with trembling lips and who would, if you took too long to order or did anything to irritate me, burst into tears. I am almost thirty years old and I couldn't stop crying. There was really no reason for this. But what set it off was teh realization, one hour into working this morning, that it is not feasible to be a laid back, calm, relaxed person and be a breakfast waitress. I managed okay this past week because we weren't very busy and I was able to calmly amble to a fro to tables at my own leisurly pace. But today we were busy...and I was in the banquet section which means I have a whole section AND I take banquets. Which in the past doesn't even phase me, but now, with me being so calm I can't do it and had no desire to break out of my calm mind state in order to be able to handle it. I don't want to be that strung out, mile a minute waitress I was a few weeks ago. Whenever I get back from a vacation people tell me how good I look, how vibrant, how my eyes are so clear. And that is because I am relaxed. By week two I am typically right back to my dark circled eyes, my frantic pace and my sallow, stress ridden pallor. When my first banquet was taking too long to order and were being morons (and one of the women remarked to her friend who had pointed out that they were taking too much of my time, "so what? she's getting tipped, we can take as much time as we want (and then left six dollars for fifteen people, fuckers)I totally freaked out because I could not, and did not want to, pick up the pace. I wanted to calmly go about my job, my life. But I realized with a start that if I want to keep this job, I cannot do that. Anyway, that was when I started crying, because I couldn't keep up with that banquet and then I got totally sad because I missed my boyfriend so much and just wanted to see him, to at least have that to come home to after work. But I don't. And then I got frustrated that I can't figure out how to get to where he is for good. Why can't I just get the ball rolling? And then I realized that most of the reason why I can't leave here, or even start to prepare to leave here is because of all these cats, that are not mine, that I feed daily. What the hell am I going to do with the not my cats when I leave? I have to, I HAVE TO, find homes for them. But people have a hard enough time finding homes for kittens, who is going to take stray, semi-feral adult cats? And I can't just leave them here. But in all honesty they are getting too much for me. Everyday I have one or four in my house and they cause all sorts of trouble, breaking things, getting in fights with my other cats, spraying, peeing...what have you. But I absolutely CANNOT throw them outside. That makes me cry too. I am a total mess.

So...I found it interesting today, the way people now days handle emotional break downs. Some people just walk away. Some people will tentatively put a hand on a shoulder, but most people will offer some sort of chemical. First a cook came up and asked, "Do you want one of my Zolofts?" Then someone else offered me some sort of muscle relaxer that would "make me forget everything." I was offered cigarettes, chocolate, drinks after work... but no one ever asked what was wrong. Not really.

And then, right as the day finished my boyfriend sent me flowers. And the card said, "hello my love! Why don't you let me send you a one way ticket back to me? I miss you already, J'et adore, your Boy." Which made me start crying again. But at least this time I was crying because it felt so good to be loved.

I really, really need to figure this out.


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