Comparatively Speaking

As I sit at work on the cusp of another four day weekend, my colleagues are casually chatting about their various plans for the mini holiday ahead.

The dreaded question eventually finds its way to me. “What are you doing this weekend Sam?” It’s something I get asked often, but with the added two days off it somehow carries greater expectations than it usually does.

What am I doing this weekend? “Nothing” I reply, trying to laugh it off, but in reality it’s more than that. I’m tired, as always, and my four days of sweet freedom will be spent recharging. That is, of course, if I’m lucky.

If my mood decides to remain stable I might catch up on some household chores, go see a movie, and read my book. Perhaps I’ll take a walk in the nearby park, or treat myself to a nice meal at the cafe close by.

However, if my brain decides to play its usual tricks it’s likely I’ll spend my days struggling to function. I might spend most of my time sleeping, or crying, or trying to ignore my anxiety and everything that comes with it.

No, I won’t be travelling to a nearby city to attend a festival. No, I won’t be heading off to a nearby resort for a weekend of hiking and sightseeing. No, I won’t be flying to another country to visit for a few days. I can barely muster up the energy to get up every morning. When the weekend arrives, I’m always exhausted.

I won’t pretend that these things don’t get to me, that I don’t feel inadequate when, on Monday morning, everyone is swapping stories about the wonderfully exciting things they’ve done. I wish I could be more like them. I wish I was as motivated and enthusiastic about making the most of my time off.

The truth is I’ve never been that way, and I’ve always felt a bit like I’m missing out on life. Sometimes I feel like I just exist to get through each week, so I can spend the weekend mentally preparing myself to do it again.

It is true that comparison is the thief of joy. I enjoy wandering around my district taking photos of the beautiful things I see. I enjoy sleeping late and staying in to watch whatever series I’m currently binging on. Yet, comparatively speaking, that seems like a pretty boring way to spend my time.

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