Your footsteps are the path, and nothing else;
there is no path, paths are made by walking.
Walking makes the path, and on looking back
We see a trail that never can be walked again.
Traveler, there is no path,
Only a wake in the sea.

– Antonio Machado
Proverbios y Cantares

I am tired on multiple levels tonight and I am trying to keep myself awake all or most of the night so I don’t lose my rhythm for working overnights this week . . . seems as good a time as any to think and write. It is so fundamentally weird that my dear fiance is long passed out and asleep in the other room, while I have really just woken up a few hours ago and I am here, alone and freewriting.

So I browse the usual time-consuming websites and I find the above stanza, and I like it and it makes me want to write. So, I write. I could be writing Christmas cards and getting them in the mail to the States and elsewhere, but Christmas still feels so far away in my bones even though it is, well, three weeks or so to go.

When I was an English Lit student in university, I spent a period where the papers I worked on kept returning to the concept of the journey as a plot device or as simply a metaphor or simile, and especially this recurrent “lost in the woods” theme — it plays out so frequently in both literature and in other mediums. Many, many have written of this before (Joseph Campbell’s The Hero with a Thousand Faces got me started, as well as one excellent former prof). The trope is well-analyzed and trod out but I still continue to be fascinated by the symbolism, in literature and in life.

(solipsism ahead)

Back to this “lost in the woods” thread . . . so often, for so long, I will catch myself scanning for this elusive path or route which does not exist, at least not for me. Silly girl, there never was one, hacked away and marked with a brightly painted signpost, meant to be found so easily. And why would I want one that wasn’t my own, forged by my own steps and created by my own wake? The other thing is that, while looking for best next steps, things learned up til now get somewhat forgotten or taken for granted.

What am I really writing about here, couched in vague metaphor . . .

Even with all that I know or have experienced, even with being prepared for it in the back of my mind (heck, charging forward with determination, and forgetting), I still get hit so hard by the change of season, and that I get even a little bit more “down” or slower or less “toughened” to deal with the random assholes that any customer service role will throw my way. I hate that I am not yet innoculated permanently from it, and that I might never be. I’ve been taking Vitamin D and all, etcetera, but I am wondering about this whole sunlamp thing and if it really helps anyone.

I hate feeling stuck.