I probably shouldn’t indulge in these feelings. That’s BS, some people say there is no such thing as “wrong feelings”, well what do you call it when your feelings are constantly demeaned and repressed by the people around you? It’s not a feelings friendly world for a dude.
Right, so the main thing is my new job…. which sometimes is nice, and others really drives me up the wall. It’s $15 an hour, which is solidly okay, average. The upshot is that in four years I can make $30+ an hour, and that’s just for doing my time. Not an easy thing to get anymore…. that kind of assurances. On the other hand, I’m a person who people have frequently assumed already has a master’s degree, keep up with most PhDs, and I’m working a blue collar job.
There’s some freedom in it, no emotional labor at all, lots of time to reflect and consider my life choices. That being said, conservatives all around me, workaholics all around me, and here’s me trying to stay healthy. Well, to not lose any more health. I want to run for it, remembering all the times companies have cut and run on me. At the same time, I play my cards close to my vest. I try to blend in. No one I work with realizes that by Red state standards, I’m a radical communist. There’s a solid distrust of authority that I can get behind with these folks, but the hatred of people different than them? I’ve been on the other side of it for so long, it’s hard not to kick back.
Then there’s the pressure to succeed, to hold the job for long enough to help my family financially…. and my wife wants to start trying for kids, so do I most days, but what kind of world is this to bring a kid into? How can I trust that the job will hold long enough to get caught up on my bills? So it’s waiting, like my whole life has been waiting, only now the waiting hurts because I work a labor intensive job which consumes most of my time, and the remaining time is slurped down by self care and family. My “life” is gone. I can’t even make it to therapy, because it interrupts work hours.
and maybe this is all self sabotage. Maybe though, I’m only holding on because I enjoy some of the fringe benefits; I like buying tools, it makes me feel in control. This job, I can tinker with my tools for the next 50 years and never run out of projects. The problems are concrete, unmoving and without nuance. There’s a primal satisfaction in it. I feel more like a man than I have in a long time, a long time.
I think the gender identity thing is an important piece of the puzzle. Sometimes I’ve identified as transgendered, and I’m starting to suspect my foray into the social sciences and the feminized world of medicine was very much a repressed reaction to my covert sexuality. Men are so much simpler, especially in that their emotional range when in all male groups is severely stunted by modern standards. I don’t think they are bad people, I think that understanding a world with no place for them is so beyond them that they’ve retreated into a little conclave, which has now taken me in. Am I like them? Somewhat, I’m wracked with shame and self loathing, as well as a free floating aggression and feeling that as an intelligent capable man the world should be providing me a better return on my investments……
All the while, wondering what will last and what will be gone soon. Large portions of this job could be automated. Frankly, I might do it myself just out of irritation of the wasted effort. Then what? I’ve killed another job that once propped up so many families. Then again, it’s all I’m good at. I wonder, does the devil feel guilty for corrupting and destroying what he touches, or does he get a satisfaction of his role within the greater structure of morality, a force to be resisted is a valuable thing in a world of smoke and mirrors…..
I’m going to go cuddle my dog, and try and forget who or what I might be. For the next two days I’m free, and I have some money, that’s something I want to capitalize on. These problems will still be here Monday morning…. and with rest maybe I can come up with some better answers.