I really enjoy spending time with my friends. Like most people, I’ve got a mix of introverted and extroverted qualities. Depending on where I am when I’m with my friends, it can be either relaxing or tiring. For instance, I organized a get-together tonight since one of my friends is leaving the state for her last semester of college and I like send-off parties. We went to a Mongolian grill restaurant for dinner and that was super exhausting because it was super loud, super busy, and I had a hard time participating in any kind of talk with my friends. Afterwards, we went to a coffee/chocolate shop where one of the group was still working, and the much quieter atmosphere helped me relax from the stress of the restaurant.
After the coffee/chocolate shop closed, they all opted to go to a bar and I opted to go home. It was a Friday night. The last thing I wanted, tired as I was and as busy as I am this weekend, was to go out to a noisy, crowded bar. They all get it, which made it easy to linger as they made plans so I could enjoy a last few minutes being around them. To be entirely fair, I probably still would have gone home even if they’d gone someplace super chill. I was exhausted after a long week and the continued reduction of my daily caffeine intake. I also started getting back into some more active things, so I’m super low on physical and mental energy. Throw in a week’s bout of depression brought on by the gloom and the cold that had ruled Wisconsin, and I’m also out of emotional energy. The trifecta. All energies dwindling and rapidly approaching zero.
So I went home and went to bed. Brushed my teeth, put on my pajamas, and decided to just wake up a bit early to get this written and pack for my trip. Unfortunately, as is often the case when I’m nearing zero, I couldn’t sleep. Instead, I opted to lie awake and stare at the ceiling until I wanted to pull my hair out. Rather than do anything to speed up my inevitable male pattern baldness, I got out of bed and worked on some poetry for a bit while listening to a band my girlfriend suggested since they’re in town for a concert next month. Walk the Moon makes for pretty good late-night-poetry-writing music, actually. They’ve got a good sound that fades in and out of the background as your attention waxes and wanes.
While I was trying to sleep and then writing poetry, the main theme of the thoughts I was trying to ignore was dread for my weekend plans. Even now, as I’m double-checking my bag and debating whether or not to bring my Switch, I really don’t want to go. I know I’m going to have a great time because I’m seeing some of my closest friends from college, people who used to fill me with such a creative charge that they drove some of the almost-insane amounts of writing I did during college. Well, insane in a sense. Given the amount I’d written at the time and how many projects I started that eventually influence my ability, I was at my most prolific in college. These days, I wrote more in a month (NaNoWriMo 2017) than I did in any entire semester of college.
Even though I’m going to meet with these wonderful friends, watch some fun movies, exchange late Christmas presents, and have a peaceful drive to clear my mind, I’m still dreading departure. This same exact thing happens all the time. I make plans that sound like a lot of fun and then the plans start to appear on the horizon, looking miserable. It happened with my plans to go out to dinner yesterday. It happened with my decision to return to my foam-fighting practice on Thursday nights. It happens with pretty much everything I do these days.
I will go and I will have a great time assuming nothing horrific happens. Unless I get in a car accident, break a bone, or get my wallet stolen, I’m going to have a net-positive trip. I’ve got too many great people and fun things packed into my weekend to have anything but a good time. The only thing that could make it better is bringing my girlfriend along for the ride. Which will happen eventually, I hope. The friend I’m staying with is still adjusting to her new apartment and hasn’t met my girlfriend yet, so I’m going to hold off on throwing additional stress her way. Plus, now I’ve got a reason to go back and visit everyone soon!