(I often converse in dreams with people I can't talk to in real life for one reason or another. If it's someone who is living but distant from me, I always wonder if they dream of me too or somehow know of the conversation. The dead - I know they know.)
Normally, rather than give my anxieties public attention, I prefer to club them with a baseball bat before tossing them into a soundproof closet lockup and leaving the room so I don't have to listen to them trying to beat the door down. Sometimes they escape and have to be rounded up and re-closeted. But I feel strangely compelled to make this post acknowledging them today. ?????
I have not done research and I do not trust statistics anyway. But it seems to me that a large portion of the populace suffers from anxiety/panic, depression, mood swings, or some other variant or combo platter of the above. It also seems that there is a portion of the population who are what I would term "emotionally flat", like my spouse. By "emotionally flat" I don't mean that he isn't a loving person or that he doesn't have feelings. I mean that he doesn't experience extreme highs and lows and that his brain and emotions do not seem to ever operate in illogical ways. Why a person like that would want to attach himself to someone like me, whose mind is doing Alice-in-Wonderland splits half the time, I'll never know. I guess some people like something a little different. He always claims he prefers Logical Mar (i.e. me when my brain is working like his), but if my mind was that way all the time, I wouldn't be me. And while I wouldn't have to smack little anxiety gremlins in KKK hats around, I also wouldn't be able to solve problems the way I do. Or love the way I do.
I've always known I had a peaky brain. I remember a bunch of us sitting around in college discussing how our emotions would look on an O-scope. My friend Erich said his would be a flat signal, Dave's would be a long duration pulse, and mine would be HIGH FREQUENCY UP DOWN UP DOWN (waving his hand wildly to illustrate his point). I'm a bit more of a pulse now that I got old and experienced, but still with the occasional bursts of manic noise.
Engineering as a profession tends to attract people who, while maybe slightly creative, enjoy stability of income and task, and who are calmed by Making Things and Knowing Answers. Many of them are flat, like my spouse and my friend Erich. I liked doing that work. I like being around that kind of stable person much of the time. It calms me down. I could not imagine going into some "creative profession" such as writing - imagine being around dozens of ersatz Plaths and Hemingways going from intense joy to nagging self-doubt coupled with constant worry about bills and "selling out". *Shudder* I figured I would end up with nothing concrete to show for my life, and with my head in my parents' oven. My parents' oven, because with the erratic paychecks, I wouldn't have been able to afford an apartment and oven of my own.
"Creative", "artsy", what you want to call it, people still alternately fascinate and repel me with their whack sides. I prefer the musical technicians who are always tinkering around with a pickup, or the craft sorts who work with their hands. I am so task-oriented. Anyone dealing too heavily in pure emotion untempered by tech makes me run like hell. I don't want to be there. I can't be there.
Perhaps it is just my German worker side saving me from the fate of too many drunk Irish poets. My mother is 100% Irish. She is a great person. But way more emotional and uncontrolled and people-oriented than I wanted to be. To get something, you have to give something up, and the price she pays for her extra intuition is in having less control over her physical, logical world.
I sense coming events casting their shadows, though not on me. I've had mine for a while. Oh well.
In the words of that great depressive, Winston Churchill, LET US GO FORWARD, TOGETHER.