a grumpy nothingness

This is not a story about my emotions all dressed up and parading themselves around as separate entities. This is not me maturely and responsibly processing my therapy session and trying to grow into a healthier person. This is just me, tired, uncertain, in the midst of a very big life transition.

It doesn’t feel good. Maybe it will in time–I hope it will in time; that’s why I’m doing this, after all. But right now I have a lot of emotions all at the same time: regret, sadness, anticipation, exhaustion (is that an emotion?), fear, resentment, disgust, impatience, doubt… Way too many emotions. I don’t think I even like emotions. Too much emotional activity just leads me to a lethargic self-loathing.

I have been trying to find the greater meaning in all this, but tonight I don’t care. I just want it all to be over. I want to crawl in a dark cave and stay there by myself. I want to burn myself so that my skin will ache and I will grow quiet inside.

“Remind me why it’s bad again?” I say to E. “It’s so effective.”

“But it’s primitive,” she tells me. “It’s effective only in shifting the focus, not in skillfully meeting the real needs. You’ve learned many other skills you can draw on. Burning has been reinforced, so it’s natural you would consider it. But ask your wisest self if it’s a good idea. I doubt she’d say so. Ask her for other strategies, strategies that show yourself the same kindness you show to others.”

I don’t feel kind. I feel grumpy. I feel nothing. A grumpy nothingness. Apathetic aggravation maybe. And then I think, really, do I still not have the ability to get myself through a transition? (more fuel for Self-Loathing). Wait, I know that’s not helpful.

You know how sometimes you don’t even want to help yourself? Or you think it might be a good idea, but it’s hard to rouse the energy? Sorry, I’m being whiny and pathetic tonight. It will pass. I’ll go to bed now and see what tomorrow looks like.



  1. “You know how sometimes you don’t even want to help yourself? Or you think it might be a good idea, but it’s hard to rouse the energy? ”
    Yes, yes, yes, yes! …. I know. I don’t know your exact pain, but I do know what this feels like, in my own experience. You’re not being whiny and pathetic. You’re being vulnerable and transparent and brave in sharing these very real feelings with us. Thinking of you… xx


  2. I think exhaustion should be an emotion, even if it isn’t. It’s in those moments of pure and utter exhaustion I’ll take a look at what I feel like doing and pick the least detrimental of the options.

    I try to boil down my life to three things during periods of exhaustion – eat, sleep, work. That’s it. Everything else waits. And this post is more than okay – its raw, and real, and its your truth. Thank you for sharing it with us. Hugs, if you want them.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I feel the same, Q. I’m also in grumpy nothingness land. I’m just sick and tired of everything. I just want it all to be over too. And this is when I feel whiny as well. I know what I need to do but I really don’t want to do it. I told S that if I do these things, not only will I be using a lot of energy that I don’t have, but that also, it’ll cause me to lose attention from people who show concern. Ugh. I hate struggling with this.


    • “… but it’ll cause me to lose attention from people who show concern.” Isn’t that a Catch-22? The genuine caring of others helps us get better, but we afraid that as we get better, that caring will go away.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. q, its ok to whine, and its ok to feel grumpy, your going through a huge life altering transition. anyone would feel that way if they were going through a similar thing. sending you tons of hugs. xoxo


  5. It is okay to be grumpy, Q. It really is okay to feel whatever you are feeling, and to share it and be honest. You are in a very intense transition, with so many unknowns and so many emotions coming up and so many demands. Of course you are exhausted and want it to be done. September 1 can’t come fast enough.


    • I am always a bit ashamed of myself for expressing my grumpy or whiny feelings. Even if I tell myself “all feelings are okay,” I worry that sharing them is just boring and bothersome to others. And reveals me as weak, I guess.

      Liked by 1 person

      • That punitive part of you is really strong, that conditioning was so strong at such a young age. It is like you weren’t allowed to be a real person, for so long. Real people get grumpy and whiny and are still lovable and very much okay.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I can see that in others (for example, in my husband and sons), but when it comes to myself, that’s a different story. I know that is because I have no doubt that they are wonderful people and I love them, while I suppose I still doubt my fundamental lovability, so I think, no, wait, a part of me thinks I have to be likable all the time to guard against rejection. But I am trying to learn differently.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh Q. You are allowed to just be grumpy. It is okay. There is so much change going on in your life right now. It’s okay to be grumpy and to want to use more primitive coping skills. All of these feelings are real and valid. It’s okay. Sending hugs and good thoughts and just hoping you know that you aren’t “less” because you are feeling grumpy. Xx💟


    • I love that you (and several others here) are giving me permission to be grumpy and grumbly and whatever else I am at the moment. I can say, theoretically, that it’s okay to have whatever feelings I have. But in practice, it can be hard to accept negative emotions. So I appreciate the reminder that it really is okay to be grumpy, angry, resentful or whatever.


      • Oh, it is so hard to accept those feelings in practice! In theory it is easy, but the work is in the practice, I think. Hold on. It really is okay to be grumpy……

        Kat has a puppet that is grumpy. Its entire personality is based on being grumpy, hating everything (except coffee and Kat. Lol) and not wanting to engage with people. Maybe you need your own grumpy puppet? 💟


  7. I love grumpy Q. I want to sit with her on the porch and drink coffee and smoke cigarettes and complain about the price of gas, or something. Thank you for sharing with us. You don’t have to be wise all the time. It’s pretty exhausting.


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