Writers are solitary creatures, but, I am increasingly social lately. And, in my “travels,” I’ve learned the accuracy of an oft-repeated statement: almost no one has their shit together. People may put on a good show, a front of calm and being collected, but everyone is scrambling and panicked—if only a little.
The most common sign of this I hear from people is sleep deprivation. I cannot believe how many of my fellow twenty-somethings sacrifice sleep.
And I’m part of that too. I do not have my shit together. You do not want to know how late I’ve been up working on stuff. How much caffeine I’ve consumed in one day—how hard I’ll push myself to get something done.
“The Things I Do for Art” is a statement I used to say a lot. And, damn, that’s the truth. But, I don’t say it now as often because it extended to “The Things I Do to Keep My Head Above Water.”
I know this is how adult life is. And, during it, there is such fun—and I don’t mean that sarcastically. On different days, I’ve been at a diner with a group of friends at two in the morning, stumbled around tipsy in the middle of Black Friday at an electronics store while my driver tried to find a deal, and ruined my sleep schedule for the sake of watching a horribly bad movie until midnight.
It’s a freedom—and a madness. That’s what life is at my age. I am not even in college, and yet I live like I am. Assuming I would not feel the temptation of coffee, that I would have more control over my time, that I could fully remove myself from the spiral, was foolish of me.
I won’t make the mistake again.
I’m repeating myself, but I must drive this home: if you are not yet in your twenties, you might be the same sort of fuck up when you are. Unless you have some special circumstances, the world will be a blur of fun and stress. Brace yourself for it. Rarely does someone have their shit together. If they look like they do, examine a little closer, and you’ll likely see the cracks.
We all are scrambling—one way or the other. That’s life; that’s existence.
It would be so boring otherwise.