All these years…

So I’ve been keeping up with my club running streak and put in 5k this morning. Next week and the week after are going to be really difficult, and I started out too fast today and now my ankle is really sore. But that’s neither here nor there, I need to stay focused and on task.
To that end, I really have to start working to break out of this depression. I can’t decide if it’s because I haven’t had a drink in over 3 weeks now, or if having a drink would make it worse? But I noticed something while I was sleeping that I have never noticed before. My dreams are more vivid, more bizarre, and way more disturbing when I am depressed. I don’t know how I have never noticed this before, and I don’t read up on symptomatic expressions of things. I’m not a doctor, I just know how things go for me and how my body acts and reacts, and that’s that. But after last night’s weirdness, I realized that whenever I feel like this is when my dreams are at their most distressing.
I don’t know if other people feel that way too, but it was a very interesting observation. Like my mind is working harder to try and escape its own prison. I can’t just rely on running to mitigate these things, like now with my achilles still in pain every day, what if something happened and I couldn’t run anymore? I’ve been trying to diversify my activities. Yoga, video games, funny TV, movies, video, things I enjoy. They do not create the same conditions.
At least now I recognize another indicator of trouble, really off-the-wall dreams/nightmares. The more things I can identify the better chance I have of mitigating and alleviating this issue. It’s been a long process, and it’s been a long time since I’ve been this down for this long. It’s been since just before my birthday really, and it has nothing to do with the birthday itself. In a time keeping system centered on a solitary planet orbiting its star, which even gets that timing wrong (hence why we have leap years and leap seconds) I’m not particularly concerned about “age”. I think I’m just truly tired, I’ve been battling personally, professionally, so much this past year or so. I think it has just caught up with me. People who witness me work think everything I do is effortless. I think I’ve discussed this before. I make things look easy. But that is so far from the truth. It’s a constant swirling torrent of doubt and worry, study and work. One thing is for sure the work is never done until it is done. At that time I’m sure I will wish for 5 more minutes, 5 more hours, 5 more days, 5 more months, 5 more years of worry, of doubt, of struggle.
That’s why I try to stay positive even when my mind is attacking itself. Because when it’s done it’s done, and so we have to our best to make the most out of every moment. That’s why I talk about treating people better. Everyone should have a chance to make the most of every moment they have. People’s ability to make the most of things shouldn’t be hindered or inhibited by artificial systems of resource distribution and the lies created therein, that some people are deserving of more based on whatever convenient criteria those who have the most determine will solidify their grip on their supposed wealth.
And that’s the thing. Life is hard enough to be a modern human being without people piling on and deeming some “deserve it”. This is why if fight as I do, as long as I have the strength to handle my personal battles. I can only ever imagine how much worse it is for someone who didn’t have the advantages I’ve had in life and yet have the same inherent disadvantages. Even when I was very young I recognized how lucky I was, even as bad things were happening to and/or around me. I’ve always had that basic empathy, to understand that the world is not mine, and there are things happening outside of my view that makes what I am going through absolute child’s play to someone else. If you cannot understand that, or if you do not want to understand that, then you need to search for your empathy. You are at fault, and it will lead you to faulty philosophies and ideas. If your ideas about how the world should work place the blame of the problems onto other people based on pure prejudice and judgement of how you think “other people” act and think, then you are at fault. The only time blame can be assigned to other people is when you can demonstrate that their actions have caused injury to society at large.
Case study: Trickle-Down Economics, or “Supply-Side” as people like to call them. It simply does not work, the wealthy hold onto their tax breaks, the poor pay more and get poorer. It causes an injury. The people who support and enforce this regime are under the assumption that the poor are to blame for their lot in life, due to laziness, irresponsible behavior, things like that. Even though you can see the stagnation in the economy, the increase in debt, the increase in pain and suffering among the vulnerable, people still continue to enforce this faulty ideology on others. People who support trickle-down are wrong, we have the statistics which show them to be wrong, and we have the empathy to reach out and see the suffering of people caused by it, to know that it is wrong. If it worked, it would not increase suffering at all.
This is a problem in general with the United States though, and the rest of the world to a point. But I have used this example before. Back in the days of the Dust Bowl, and other more minor but still troubling droughts, there would be travelling holy men, the people who became the pastors in mega-churches today, their ancestors. They would go from town to town promising that it would rain. They would seduce the women in the town (seriously, there’s a great description of that in John Steinbeck’s “Grapes of Wrath), they would take as much money as the town would give, promising they could make it rain. They’d have a huge event at the town’s expense, and when the time came and it didn’t rain, they’d tell the townspeople that it was their lack of faith, it was their sinful ways which caused the rain not to work, God didn’t abandon them, they failed God. Why we allow these people to continue to treat us this way I will never understand. We need to change.

Have fun, keep running, and remember; if Gil can run then so can you!

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