clutter

SHN Day 2. Got nothing done again. Am starting to get antsy about the fact that I can’t control my meals, because I’m not allowed in the kitchen. People have to bring food to me, and I can’t be the type of person that demands food be brought to me, so I’ve been nibbling on snacks to get me through mornings until lunch is offered around 2pm when my sister gets home from school. It also frustrates me that after several months of fixing my own meals I can’t control what food I get or how much of it I get. I don’t like taking up space and I don’t like being demanding, so I’ll take it, but I don’t necessarily like it. Sometimes it’s nice not to have to do the work but I’ll take having to do the cooking and washing up over not having any choice at all.

Otherwise, I’m starting to remember how unproductive this room is for me. It’s an accumulated product of seven years of living, and a patchwork of tastes from when I was thirteen and up. The wall I painted the blue of the Nintendo DSi that I now feel darkens the room and does nothing to improve depressive moods. The shelves above the desk with pictures and framed posters and art prints and mementos that are cute collections until I need to sit and focus. One thing about moving into new empty rooms the past two years is that I’ve been able to figure out what kind of space works for me mentally, now. I like posters and prints, but out of my direct line of sight from where I need to be working. In my room in London the posters are behind me and the pictures are above my bed. I kept the wall in front of my desk deliberately blank. Otherwise it’s just a ton of visual clutter that’s terrible for my already easily distracted brain. Even during IB when I really needed to focus I’d usually go and sit at the dining table where it was more open, and usually at odd hours so it was quiet and I was alone.

Since I moved to London my sister has taken occupancy in my room as well, which doesn’t help. It’s like resetting the clock. I’m moving towards cleaner, brighter environments, with organised pops of character; she’s nine years old and there’s all the messy jumbles of colour and scrap drawings and stickers. The new desk lamp my parents got while I was away also has a yellow bulb. I prefer white.

It was never really an issue last summer because I didn’t have to work here. But now that I’m confined here for the bulk of my coursework and assessments I’m starting to pick apart the little things affecting my productivity — grasps at an effort to actually start ticking things off my to-do list. It’s dauntingly long and I think that’s part of what’s blocking me. I haven’t been in a good mental state to do academic work for the past week, even before flying, and this environment doesn’t help.

I want to paint over the garishly blue wall. Switch out this lightbulb. Do a heavy clearing of all these things on the desk. I don’t know how to do it without starting an argument about sharing the space with my sister, though. I guess I just thank god I didn’t stay here for uni.

I’ve also been facing a huge mental block trying to commit to the creative writing class I was so excited about initially. I think part of it was rediscovering how very, very, very bad I am at writing on demand, or being willing to write on demand. I don’t know. That seems like a flat excuse. But the past few weeks I’ve become so apathetic towards my courses and I’m not even properly sure why. I hate it, but I just couldn’t seem to find the motivation to care, especially with the double blow of strikes and then the virus basically cancelling most classes anyway. I think I’ve mentioned this before in a previous post but it feels like I’m slipping into very dangerous territory with this general apathy and uncertainty about the future. I know it’s something everyone’s sort of facing right now and I’m not alone in it, but on a personal note it feels like a recursion and/or reversion. It kind of sucks when for once I had a plan going, and I was excited about things, and then the pandemic happened and flushed it all down the drain.

Best part about today: watching Florence Pugh on IG stories make butternut squash soup. She is a treasure and her accent still gets me. I keep forgetting she’s British.

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