*Disclaimer: Extreme amount of self-pity and doubt to be found below. I am aware that this too shall pass.
But not yet.
But this week, this past week, I've been struggling with a nagging feeling that starts at the pit of my stomach and reaches up and around settling in the tense part between my shoulder blades. And it doesn't make sense. I am about to begin my third week of a 10k training program. I've been eating regularly and healthily, and I've been doing a decent (though not incredible) amount of writing. I'm doing well at work. I was asked to allow part of a paper I wrote last year to appear in one of my professor's articles. All really good things. But I'm not happy.
For every positive, I feel there is a negative. Today marks the day in which I was planning on beginning the great submission process, sending out drafts and query letters and essays to journals and literary agents. I've got nothing. I don't have a single piece, let alone a series or collection of pieces that I would be willing to send out. The feeling of failure is suffocating. I'm finding it difficult to breath and my eyelids feel heavy, physically willing me to shut out this day that will pass like any other, and in no way closer to the fruition of my dream of becoming a published writer.
I turn 26 in eleven days. I wanted to do and be so much at this point. I trembled at the turn of my 25th year, but now, now that 25 is ending and 26 is beginning, I feel the pace of time accelerate, the belt quickening, the lapping dog snapping at my heels of goals unmet, and achievements incomplete.
I have always had very high expectations of other people. Those closest to me say this is one of my biggest flaws, not allowing for missteps in friends and family. I demand perfection. And so many have failed, so many have caused me to sit up waiting, pay for things that are not mine, do things that do not fall under my umbrella of responsibility. But, at the end of the day, at the end of this difficult week, at the beginning of this loaded month, no one can, nor ever will disappoint me as much as I disappoint myself. There are so many things that I'm doing right, so many brave and smart choices that I've made. But none of it feels like enough. None of them feel any different than what I was doing a year ago. Why bother at all?