Lockdown: Frabjous day

After roughly ten hours in bed Sunday night, perhaps seven or eight of them sleeping, I was up around 7:30 and raring to go. I’m kind of working on two stories at the same time. Made decent progress on them both and got hung up on them both right around the same time. This is not an ideal way to work but for some reason I couldn’t focus on one at a time.

Slowed way down around the lunch hour, just felt my energy drain out of me again, like it did late Friday and all day Saturday. I don’t know what this is. I’m not ruling out something emotional, but it feels different from the usual emotional muckiness. I wonder if I’m recovering from eating something bad.

I struggled to get to the end of my work day, but really what was the point? I was nearly useless except for responding to emails. When I took my usual hour for lunch and tried to take a nap, I realized all that sleep Sunday night left me not at all sleepy. So I just lingered in bed, sapped of strength and not sleeping. It was a bit disheartening.

When I was off the clock I just went to bed. Went into and came out of uneasy sleep for several hours, replaying the podcast I was listening to every time I woke up and realized I’d missed it. At around 11:00, I got up to take my weekly bite out of the Monster, after spending half an hour convincing myself it would be okay to let it slide for one week.

I did the strenuous, somewhat time-consuming second task in what’s still a three-task Monster routine. The strenuousness had me taking a lot of breaks, including one two-hour one in bed. Ugh. But at about 2:00 I got up and finished it, then did the other stupid tasks and finally wrapped it all up at about quarter to six in the morning.

I’m a little too tired to really reflect on this, but the Monster as a singular, daunting task is pretty much slain. There are a few severed limbs here and there that I will have to tend to here and there, but we’re talking an inconvenient 10 minutes at a time, a few times over the next month or so, not ninety minutes to three (or six, as it was today) hours every week. I really got started in the last week of April. Looking at my calendar, I count fifteen weeks without skipping a week, doing roughly the same amount of unpleasant, disgusting, strenuous work on this ridiculous thing.

And hast thou slain the Jabberwock?
Come to my arms, my beamish boy!
O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!

I can recite “Jabberwocky” by memory, in case you need someone to bring some poetry to your wedding ceremony. It just happened. I never set out to memorize it; I just know it.

So what next? The Monster was a cumulative problem that I’ll have to be vigilant against its rising up again. This means regularly tending to a chore unlike any chore you have to do wherever you live, I assure you. Like, I could give you a hundred — nay, five hundred — guesses and you’d never even get close. As long as I do that every few days, it’s not a big deal. And by my calculations I would have to neglect it for a whole month to accumulate what’s been one week’s worth of Monster-slaying activity during this lockdown.

Let’s not let it get to that again.

Here’s also what’s next. I have an even larger task, another cumulative thing I’m not nearly as embarrassed about, that I couldn’t really take care of until the Monster was out of the way. I just have a ton of decluttering I have to get done. It’s something I attack here and there, periodically, but not with the focused regularity it requires. Not with the devotion I’ve paid the Monster these past fifteen weeks.

So I guess I’m going to apply this kind of dedication to decluttering, reserving the same time every week with an early Monday morning deadline. I’m calling this stupid, annoying beast of a task the Beast, which I will begin next week. I think this week I’m going to pick up the loose ends of the Monster, as best I can, just to get as many remnants of it out of my way as possible.

Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun
The frumious Bandersnatch!

I haven’t actually been to bed, like really put myself to bed, since I got up at 7:30 Monday morning. This is going to play hell with my brain, my work, and my overall Tuesday. I’m considering taking a vacation day for mental health, except I’m against deadlines on three things. Ugh.

Breakfast was a couple of tuna sandwiches. Lunch was instant ramen with a small mountain of soy sprouts and bok choi — grown-up bok choi, not baby bok choi. Each meal was slightly too much food, so I didn’t have dinner, and neither did I have any snacks. That no-energy thing I’ve been going through lately has come with a loss of appetite, too, which is probably as much in play here.

My coworker Stacia texted me a link to a New Yorker article about this copy-editing game. We have to play this, I responded. She said she knows. We talked a little about how we could use it as part of a group interview the next time we fill a spot in our department.

Jennifer sent me some info about this Nutella packaging I wondered aloud about on IG. Pretty interesting but also kind of dumb. I dislike Nutella now anyway.

Traded a few FB messenger thoughts with Jen, one of my NaNoWriMo buddies. Another friend on messenger sent me a link to a forum discussion we had about The Good Earth exactly fourteen years ago.

That was about it, but that was perhaps all I had capacity for. Here’s to better feeling Tuesday.

I didn’t go for a walk! Gr.

Reach out if you need some connection. I’ll send contact info.

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