[trigger warning: jaded burner pity party]
This will be my 10th burn. I must confess that it just feels like a lot of pointless work right now and I'm not feeling the thrill.
The camp that I usually go with seemed like they were breaking up, most of the core people aren't going this year, so I decided to withdraw from that camp, and I signed up to go with a theme camp that I went with a couple years ago. Last week I went to one of their planning meetings and felt like their energy and mine didn't mix well. I'm not going to identify them here, but let's call them Knitting Camp. They're nice people, but I really have no interest in attending crocheting workshops or wandering around the playa yarn-bombing things. More power to them, it's just not my thing. I didn't do much stitching when I was with them before, and I'm even less interested now. I don't think I can just show up to build camp, do my workshifts, and then run away for the week having adventures, because they're really focused on having people in camp participating in their afternoon scarf-making ceremonies--which I totally understand, because that's the whole point of a theme camp.
Maybe I should just keep shopping for a camp, but I don't feel like I have a lot of energy to be outgoing and participatory right now. I'm really stressed out about work, family, and relationships and it makes me very low and anti-social. I should be working on costumes, soldering EL-wire, making packing lists, arranging transportation, and going to build parties on the weekends, but it doesn't feel real--it seems like after all these years I've fallen away from the burn, and I don't know how to get back to being excited about it. I don't like being this way because I don't want my mood to affect anyone else negatively; I guess I feel safe doing it on ePlaya because it seems like with all the snark, everyone here is tough enough to take it.
I keep trying to imagine what it will be like out there, with all the fire, lasers, nudity, techno, drama, and all the other things that I love, and I just feel like I have no emotional space to let the festival into me. I have to keep my mind on my job and personal responsibilities, and I can't get into character as a burner. It's like all that I've built up over the last 10 years is a ramshackle art project that blew away in a dust storm, and I am just too tired and sore and busy to chase it down again.
I keep telling myself that I work hard all year so that I can play hard on the playa, and I am trying to remember how to play, how to let myself get swept up into the excitement.
Have any of you ever been through this kind of disconnection from Burning Man? Did you end up going anyways? How did it work out for you?