Comfort zone: Apathy

I’ve spent most of my life pushing my luck. Defying the rules. Taking skewed paths.

Conquering “uncomfortable” became a norm for me.

Over the years it became a regular thing to be interjected into surreal and uncomfortable situations. Interjected then turned into running right into those situations on purpose. That was my job. And I was great at it.

Nothing shocks me. Nothing embarrasses me. Nothing scares me. I could go on and on….

My comfort zone is apathy. Feeling nothing.

And the last time I stepped fully out of that comfort zone was in 2019 when I voluntarily spent 45 days at an in-patient treatment facility 12 hours from home. A place that is specifically for firefighters and paramedics only. A little place in Marlboro, Maryland called the Center of Excellence.

It was at that facility that I had to begin chipping away at walls of apathy I had built. I had to feel things. And I hadn’t felt anything in years. Good or bad. The goal was to feel joy and love but that meant I would have to feel all the bad things first. They couldn’t make me come out of my comfort zone. I had to force myself to do it.

Apathy is so dark. Yet I had adjusted to that dark. I navigated through it with ease. My brain rewired itself to default to apathy within every aspect of my life. But when I began rewiring my brain at COE, I began seeing sparks of light. Little flashes that were blinding. Those sparks eventually caught fire and began to melt my comfort zone walls. Letting light in. And that light was feelings.

It was the most uncomfortable thing I believe I have ever experienced.

I’m trying to continue rewiring my brain to feel true joy and love. I owe it to my children and myself. Leaving the enviroment that kept feeding my apathy with tragedy has made a huge difference. But my brain still defaults to the comfort of apathy. I hope to use blogging and sharing my stories as a way to deal with those bad feelings in order to finally heal them and move on to the good stuff.

8 thoughts on “Comfort zone: Apathy

  1. This is amazing! apathy for you was a kind of mental “dead zone” where nothing was happening. I am truly quite sure that if you write and start blogging regularly – it will really, really help. Eleven years ago when I started blogging, it helped me pull out of a rather dark place. Believe me, there is SO much good stuff out there!

    1. Thank you! Its a daily struggle, but I took the biggest step and left my career. Now it’s time to conciously putting in work to rewire myself.

  2. Defining apathy as the outcome of desiring to “not feel” is new to me, and a couple of images of some people came to mind. Now I understand. It takes courage to get out of that comfort zone. Thank you for sharing.

    1. I don’t think I ever looked at apathy as a comfortable place for me to be until I had to break down 22yrs of work-related traumas. Only then did I even really realize that “feelings” made me uncomfortable. And to be honest, staying comfortable in apathy is easier than feeling. But it’s not what I need to do. I need to be uncomfortable and sitting in my hard feelings about alot of things. Because ‘not feeling’ also means no true joy or happiness. I have to find that again.

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