Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Complete, Utter, Discontented Boredom

Ever get to where you don't feel like doing anything? Where nothing really seems to grab your attention and no chores or tasks are demanding to be finished? Where even your normal relaxation activities seem boring?

Last evening was one of these times for me after getting home from work and making dinner. 

I didn't feel like doing any household chores.

I didn't really feel like watching a TV show or a movie.

My brain was not functioning where I wanted to read or write.

The creative and learning functions of my brain just seemed spent.

I was bored. 

Isn't it interesting when you have a boredom that is a restless boredom? In that you don't feel like doing anything, but yet you also don't feel like doing nothing?

So I played with the dog a bit...and let the cat hang out. I put on an old black and white movie, but couldn't finish it even though it was really interesting.

I tried playing solitaire and mah jong on the computer while listening to music, but that only lasted maybe half an hour. 

So the evening went. Wasted time. Solitary time. But not even productive reflective or meditative solitary time. 

There was nothing special to prepare for today at work, or even that had me excited to get up and get Wednesday started. Work was just that last night - a prospect of a mundane day at the office. 

I haven't gotten to see Amanda for more than fleeting moments for the past five days while she's been at work. Memorial Day weekend had no major plans although I was able to get out of the house Saturday to help move Chris & Tiffany Porrino, went to church Sunday and then later to a sports bar just to watch the NASCAR race, and hung out with some friend Monday afternoon. So that should have been plenty of socialization, right? 

Yet Tuesday, work was busy and draining, and I get home with no energy or motivation to even watch a movie. I truly was bored. This normally does not happen to me.

I didn't do a blog post yesterday, because my brain was not wanting to create anything.

Boredom. Complete, utter, discontented boredom.

I normally can always find something to do. But in this funk, nothing seemed worthwhile. Motivation had long ago set over the horizon, not to be found until the alarm annoying blazed in the early morning hours.

Have you every gotten in these situations? What do you do about them?

Do we need to have time like this? If so, why is it so tumultuous to the soul? I have other days where I'm relaxing and recharging at home, doing nothing, but it is a much-needed respite from a busy schedule. I didn't need any "me" time last night. Probably actually needed some sort of low-key interaction with a trusted friend. But no opportunities came. Basketball didn't organize. Even Facebook was devoid of activity.

I know it set me up to be discontent today as well. A day where I am now seeming to question where I'm at and what I'm doing. To look at the type of life that Amanda and I feel called towards, and desire to have, yet have not been able to obtain yet. The motivations and goals of others are made more clear, and are distinct from the direction I find my life trajectory on. 

Not to let this boredom shift to a type of despair or depression, however, it is also a time when I can sense movement and see opportunity. I simply didn't have the motivation to do anything at the time. Financially, some options became available and put on the table. Ways to change life flit in and out of consciousness, knowing the ability to change our lives towards that opportunity are in our hands. It just takes time.

I desire purpose, meaning, movement so these times of stagnation are difficult for me. 

The evening was not, if you permit me a metaphor, a refilling of the gas tank before getting back on the road, but more like you get to an intersection and don't know which way sounds like the better way to go. And nothing is making you choose, so you sit, looking around at the intersection for any clues about whether one route is better or worse for travel. Checking the wind, the clouds, the smells, and the landscapes as they stretch out in different directions in front of me. (Not actively making a pros & cons list, but just letting the brain do its thing without conscious effort). Looking back and forth. Down at the ground. Back up at the sky. Turning around and looking back up the road I've come. Just not knowing, or wanting to make a decision to arbitrarily pick a road forward. 

Letting direction come...hoping it comes...praying for it to come. 

Its Elijah before the mountaintop after running away from Jezebel. Before God even told him to go up to the mountaintop to await a word. Its November, just after the harvest but prior to when the decisions on the preparation for planting of next years crops must be made. Its graduating from school without a clue what you want to do, or what you God leading you to do.

Have you ever had these moments? How do you deal with them?

I'm not sure I know if what I do is right or not, because they are so foreign and unsettling. 

1 comment:

  1. Honestly, I am not sure if I have ever had a time like this, but in a lot of ways I think we just have to ride the waves of life. Its the ups and downs of life that make it such an adventure. By the way if you ever need I can come by fuller anytime to just talk theology or give you a hard time about being Army, if it helps. I know you know this, but this is Jerry and not my wife Ann (don't have my own google account).

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