I put off writing this article because I wasn’t sure if I was emotionally ready to force myself to reflect. This is evident in the 16 revisions I’ve made to this article.
Lust is often thought of solely as a sexual desire. We’ve all felt it or feel it in the present, but I sure as hell don’t.
When you finally get out of a bad relationship, you’re told to pick yourself up and get back out there. So, I tried. However, no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t feel any kind of lust for new romance, new connection or even the intimate aspects of a relationship. It made me feel queasy and quite sad.
I would look into the eyes of the people I was going on dates with and see this glimmer of hope that I could not reciprocate. They didn’t know they would not see me again, that I would ignore their texts and screen their calls. It ripped up my chest because I wanted so badly to be fixed by another person to forget the last person that had broken me. The worst part was that I would take out this hurt and anger on the unsuspecting and faultless coffee date rather than the perpetrator. Thus, it was unfair to both parties.
I don’t crave companionship in the way I used to. I can’t force it with a stranger or even a person I’ve known for years. To be honest, I’d rather stay home with a bare face in a sea of blankets with my cats. But when I’ve lived out that desire of isolating myself to my room, I’ve found that this lack of lust has extended not only to unmatched infatuation, but also my creative abilities. I can’t write like I used to, I rarely play my instruments, turn on music or read when I’m confined to my room.
You believe that when there’s a lack of romance in your life that you’ll suddenly feel more inclined to pursue your interests and prepare for your future. I learned, the hard way, that just because your heart is the equivalent of the Sahara desert doesn’t mean you’ll wake up wearing a fashionable pant suit with a completed to-do list. So, how are you supposed to move on and have your moment of: “ah I see how everything fell into place”??
Well, turning a new leaf isn’t as glamorous as media portrays it to be. I’ve seldom had an “AHA” moment, but rather an “oh” moment. I wasn’t prepared for killing time… I was prepared for there not being enough time for me to squeeze in all the amazing things I thought I would do.
We’re trained to feel bad for taking time to ourselves, especially when it affects others. I was trained to feel bad for the people that wouldn’t have a potential romantic future with me. I was trained to feel bad about not knowing what to do next. But you can’t allow that social grooming to force you to take away your time to heal.
I wouldn’t venture to say that this romantic paralysis and lack of ambition makes me feel sad, but more so numb and unmotivated. I think this is a result of how I’ve been feeling for a long time, my biggest “feelingz fear”: apathetic. Apathetic is the antithesis of what I’ve always wanted to be. It gives me chills for someone to think of me as indifferent or dispassionate.
So, this has been something that I’ve been slowly BUT SURELY working on. This is what I’ve learned:
-You have to take the time to self-soothe. You’re not going to fix it all over the course of a day and that’s a hard pill to swallow but it’s a fact.
-Watch your favorite shows (in moderation) even if you’ve seen them hundreds of times.
-Immediately turn on music when you enter your room if that helps you recharge or add excitement to your day.
-Work on going to bed earlier and waking up earlier. When you start doing this, the time you have throughout the day seems endless and full of possibilities. Plus, when you begin your night time routine earlier in the night, you have ample time to take care of yourself.
-If you’re the kind of person to get overwhelmed by responsibilities that results in napping throughout the day to ease the anxiety: make appointments, a lot of them, throughout the day so you don’t have the chance to consistently log off. These appointments could be doctor’s appointments you’ve been putting off, vet visits for your furry friends or something that won’t cost money like setting a date and time with a friend to browse a bookstore, etc.
-With that being said, it’s good to take time to yourself and log off, but not when it becomes an unhealthy habit.
-Make sure you’re reading for yourself as well as for school if that’s something that you enjoy doing.
-Take up a hobby or activity that is not AT ALL associated with school or your job. Always wanted to learn how to play the guitar? Sign up for lessons. Feel weird about taking beginner’s guitar lessons in your twenties? Keep it your dirty little secret.
-Go to a flea market every once in a while and imagine the lives of the people who owned the things you’re looking at. Someone may do that to your shit that ends up in a thrift store one day!
-Invest in some good pajamas.
-Call your mom! or mother figure!
-There’s a really nice feeling in watching something grow as a result of your care so head down to a store and purchase some plants to water and sing to. However, start small because a green thumb is the result of practice.
To wrap this up, it’s important to find balance when you feel like you’re tipping the scale of life. I firmly believe, as a younger generation, we are terrified of failure. But to make any headway in the previous list or a list of your own, you’re going to have to fail. Think of it as good practice for your future because no one’s really going to know that you’re failing at the personal goals you set for yourself because they’re personal!!
You are but just one person who feels that you have to put others before yourself. But without this time of self-soothing, that you need to allow yourself, how can that same glimmer of excitement return to your eyes?
You are more than deserving of a lust for life and you deserve to be your best self, whatever that may be.