Hello, internet people.
It appears I have not used this blog in over two years. I was apparently only using it to write about DC movies that I didn't care for. That's not a super-constructive use of time, probably. In fact it may be less constructive than just not writing anything at all. Over the past few years I've done a lot of writing, mainly for Comics Beat, which is amazing. But I haven't done much writing that's just for myself in quite a while. It's 2020 now, and I want to get back to that. I apologize in advance if the quality is not very good.
Anyway, here I am. And friends, I am sad. I would even go so far as to say I'm depressed.
It's a familiar feeling, but not one that I've felt for an extended period of time in quite a while. Probably not since...2007? Whenever it was that I got medicated for it. I take anti-anxiety meds, a relatively low-dose, but it usually keeps me pretty stable. For the past three months or so, though, it's been less effective. There are pretty clear reasons for it, at least.
I'm sad about Max, our dog of over nine years, who got sick in late October and died in late November. His absence isn't as obvious now as it was in the days and weeks immediately following his death, but I still feel it. I have to stop myself from reflexively saying 'my dogs' when talking about pets. Thankfully I work at home and don't talk to people very often. That also gives me a lot of time to wallow, so maybe that's not the best.
I'm also sad about Mara, our other dog, who was diagnosed with cancer over a year ago. That's had its ups and downs, but she's been pretty stable following an initial surgery (and another surgery for a new growth late last year) and with medication. Most of the time you wouldn't even know she's sick. I think in the wake of Max being gone, though, both Jennie and I have become hyper-vigilant of her behavior, so any change, however slight, is causing a lot of concern. I still haven't adjusted to Max being gone. I'm not anywhere near ready to say goodbye to Mara.
There are a lot of other things I'm sad about. I'm sad about the state of the world. About leaders who do not have our best interests, or anything beyond their own interests, in mind. About the fires burning in Australia. About gun violence that continues unabated. And about what feels like my overall inability to do anything about any of these things.
So yeah. I'm sad. I'm pretty sure some of this is the weather, too. It's been raining for the past week and a half, and I don't remember the last time I saw the sun (Joe, you live in the Pacific Northwest, what did you expect). My depression has never been as bad as I know it is for others. It's not the kind that keeps me from getting out of bed. But it's the kind that crushes all motivation to do basically anything but the bare minimum to get by. It's the kind that results in sitting on the couch for hours on end, mindlessly scrolling through Twitter until my phone dies while a TV show I've watched numerous times already plays in the background. (The Twitter scrolling doesn't help.) It's the kind that makes me want to order food instead of make something. If it requires any sort of mental effort, I'm not interested in doing it.
That's not really conducive to trying to make changes or keep resolutions or whatever in a new year. But one of my goals for 2020 was to write more personal stuff. Whether that's fiction or comics or just rambling nonsense like this. I think voicing some of this out loud has helped. And the fact that I even sat down to do it is probably a good thing.
So that's progress?