Quick update: I have a job. I work at a bookstore, which I’ve wanted to do since I was a tiny bookworm.
In a few small ways, a job has just given me a host of new things to be neurotic about. I have co-workers, which offers myriad opportunities to worry about how I fit in with them and what they think of me. I have to interact with customers, which can be mildly nerve-wracking. I seem to make at least one mistake a day, which makes me worry about my managers and holding on to my job.
But the benefits of working are outweighing the problems, so far. It’s not just about money, although having money is a huge relief after a long stretch of unemployment. It gets me out of the house every day – I know that sounds pathetic, but after a long depression at the beginning of the year, getting out of the house regularly does feel like an accomplishment.
It also gives me some sense of accomplishment. Mooching off my family and hanging around the house was killing me. Just doing something – virtually anything – is such an important component of identity.
Anyway, I’ve been doing really well. The usual bullshit is still a problem – the daily anxieties and self-criticism – but I feel like I can manage it. Of course it’s a little scary, because when you start feeling better after a period of depression, you’re always waiting for things to go bad again. But I really think, for now, I’m doing okay.