I feel as if I have a lot to say. Friday and Saturday were good as expected, though pretty emotional. Jodie's wedding was beautiful (though not as beautiful as she was and is), and it was fantastic to see my Durham friends and some other Emory folk who came for the occasion. Graduation was exciting as well. It's still not really sinking in that Katie and Jenny GRADUATED. Ahhhh. It's just downright ridiculous. I almost feel like I'm graduating all over again, because I just can't imagaine what it will be like to visit there without them there... and not to sleep in my beloved bunk bed with all Jenny's stuffed animals piled on it. It's sad, and even more so than I expected, somehow. But I'm so proud of them. They're both absolutely incredible women, and I know they will shape the world just how they shaped Emory, VA, and neither will be the same. I love them so much, and I wish I had been able to be a better friend to them over the past few months. And speaking of not being as good a friend as I'd like...By the time the post-graduation eating festivities were over with on Saturday afternoon, I was utterly exhausted. I hadn't been alone since Thursday afternoon, and I was at the absolute end of my social-interaction rope. It had been a while since I'd had enough people around for long enough to get to this point, and it was an almost physical sensation of I have to get away from everyone right now or else something bad is going to happen. It was quite terrible. And to make it worse was the fact that I had previously told my friend Joe that he could come back to Radford with me and hang out for a while before driving home to Johnson City. Now, just to clarify, Joe is very near the bottom of the rank order list of People, From Most to Least Annoying, and is also very near the top of the rank order list of People, From Most Caring and Able to Understand Me Even Though I Don't Currently Make Sense to Least Caring and Able to Understand Me Even Though I Don't Currently Make Sense. And yet, at this point, it didn't matter, and I just had to tell him he couldn't come after all. Which made me feel absolutely awful. And made me realize that I'm not as much better as I thought I was. So I got in the car to drive back to Radford, feeling very dejected and guilty.
But my energy did begin to replenish itself very slowly starting the moment I closed the door, shutting out absolutely everything except my own brain (or what there was left of it) and the great men of Guster, who were singing, appropriately, "Closing doors and locking locks / He looked inside himself / Only to find / Seeping from his soul...Let me fall in two / Let me fall in two..." And so I did. And I knew that I had done the right thing, the healthy thing, and yet I still felt, paradoxically, selfish. And so I got a little further up the road without falling asleep and decided to stop and see Dallas, one of my very best friends, who is recuperating from a terrible car accident. I convinced myself that I really wanted to see him, but, honestly, I think I mostly just wanted to want to see him, because I want to be a good friend... or I want to feel like I'm a good friend. Karen Horney would've called it the "tyranny of the shoulds," but I called it self-sacrifice in the name of freindship, and just identifying it as such made me feel guilty. Because I want to be a good friend to him like he has been to me. I want so bad just to be able to do something for him that will make it better. And it makes me feel inappropriately guilty, as if I specifically chose now to be incapable of being a good friend, specifically because he's broken and needs me not to be. And yet I want him to need me, and sometimes I fear that he doesn't, because he's the strongest, most positive person I know, and he's going to be fine. He already is fine. For the longest time, he was lying in a hospital bed, unable to move, feeling more optimistic about his life than I was about mine. And all I have is a stupid thyroid disease. I wish I could be strong like him. I admire him so much.
But I'm not strong like him, so I didn't stay long, because I was tired and irritable and cranky, and was probably getting on his nerves anyway. So I went home, still dejected, but glad to be really alone. I did break down a little, crying about nothing (or was it everything?), but I was glad to do it in solitude, because I didn't have to worry about hurting anyone else's feelings, or trying to explain it to anyone. But that's the great thing about being alone: no explanations are necessary. Understanding is all there is.
So on Sunday, I woke up feeling immeasurably better, as I knew I would, having had some time alone to fill up my tank 'o' emotional energy. And, just in time, Joe called, wanting to come visit on Monday. Bless his heart, he wanted to see me even after I totally uninvited him. It was kind of overwhelming, really. He's so great. So he drove all the way from Johnson City just to see me, and we sat and talked about psychology (and life, if that's not redundant), and it was fabulous. I don't know how he manages to understand me the way he does, but it's pretty exciting. He's going to be an amazing psychologist one day (and, shamefully, I keep finding myself wanting to mold him into me...except without the dropping out of school part.) For now, he's an amazing friend. Additionally, as a note to people in this general area of the world who may not be aware of this information: we went on an adventure or sorts, and discovered something that may be of interest to you, namely, if you want to go to Floyd, don't go on a Monday, because everything it closed.
In other news, I am finally officially medically withdrawan from school. It's a pretty major relief. I'm in the process of weaning myself off of my heart medicine, which was managing my high blood pressure and crazy-fast pulse, which should be ok on their own soon, since my thyroid is shrinking steadily. This is quite a relief as well, and probably accounts for my having started sleeping much better lately. I'm trying to look out for the signs of hypothyroidism, which could happen pretty soon (or not), and, sadly, I've already started to gain weight. But I've been doing ballet daily, trying to get on an exercise reigmen now, and deal with this before it becomes a big problem. I still have a long way to go, but I think I'm making progress.