It. Sucks. A lot.
I came to a realization today.
I have a habit of getting too involved with people to quickly, This is clear to me, has been for some time, and isn’t the realization I’m talking about. I want so hard to serve people, to make them happy and comfortable when they are sick, or taking extra care to be there for them when they need it most. Going the extra mile and surprising people. Taking the time to notice when they are looking sad, and doing anything I can to turn that around. This is how I show that I care, that I want to spend time with you, that I feel some sort of love for you, EVEN if it’s just the love one feels for a friend.
But more and more I begin to realize that the people I care so much for and want to be around don’t feel the same way. I am making all the effort in these friendships and relationships, and there comes a point when you begin to doubt whether or not you would still be friends if you stopped making the effort to be so. Any sort of relationship, whether friendship or more, is an exchange. wanting to be around/serving someone that has no desire or makes no effort to do the same for you really makes no sense. What am I gaining out of these “relationships”? Nothing but a lot of empty dreams. Things that I allow myself to believe for a while, until they become too painfully and obviously untrue. Even if this is an attempt to combat some terrible loneliness, how is this going to help at all? I need to start making an effort to really connect with people who actually want to be connected with.
be the change you want to se in the world, doesn’t mean that you need to give to other people what you want for yourself. Because this will really never come back to you, and only ends in disappointment for the the most part. The real secret is to give to yourself what you want from others. If you aren’t willing to give yourself love, or respect, or time. No one else will give it to you either.
Sometimes I wonder, “What is keeping me alive right now?” I have no desire to keep on going. There is a spark, a fire in each of us, it illuminates the mind and shines out through your eyes. Mine has gone out. I’ve stopped caring. At first they were small things, like keeping my room clean or getting to bed at a certain time. Then came homework and getting perfect grades. Now I don’t care if I get up in the morning. I don’t care if I WAKE up in the morning. I don’t care to think, to feel, to breath. Every breath is a stab to my heart. Not the actual pump, the cors, the atria, the ventricle, but the place in my chest where I feel that ache of loneliness. The place my hands instinctively find when I try to sleep, curled up and guarded, cupped together over my sternum. I have no desire to eat, but I do. Sometimes. But only because I know it will hurt me. Because I know that i have to. Not even tasting things mostly. I eat until I hurt. I hurt so I eat.
I am falling apart. When I look at myself, I see the bones underneath. My eyes glaring from the depths of a hollow skeletal mask, a mask that somehow still seems fat. As oxymoronic as it sounds. I see the progress of time in my eyes, my hair, the flexing of muscles that passes as my smile. My body has never been normal and never will. I feel like I’m trapped in the decaying corpse of an 80 woman.
What do I contribute to this world? Everyone wants to be remembered. For most of us it will only be in the memory of our children, our pets (except for goldfish), our journals, our….online histories? As a gay man I can have no children. My siblings can carry on the flawed Pratt line for themselves. Out of the 6 of them, there is a pretty good chance of that. I have no pets, nor am I allowed them. Also, animals mistrust and dislike me, and who knows how much they can actually remember anyways. What’s the difference between two pairs of cold hand in the long run as long as they are fed and taken care of. I’ve tried and failed several times to start a journal, but it seems that my life is too mundane and melancholy to interest even me. There is also some question as to whether or not I want anyone to actually read about my life and struggles. It seems like that might do more harm than good to most people. Instead let me be remembered as the fun, happy-go-lucky person that most of the worlds sees me as. Facebook has been my journal for the last few years, keeping tabs on my thoughts, and documenting major events. Its better than a journal really.
I have friends. I am not so delusional as to deny that. But what do I give to them? a few laughs? Some memorable quotes, and stories to tell their next friends? At the moment it seems I’m only a burden. I Burden them with my thoughts and feelings of depression and loneliness. I burden them with expressions of Love and Affection that they can’t return.
That they CAN’T return.
I am around when it’s convenient for me to be so. I come to them. I serve them. I give everything I am to them. I’m left with nothing. Nothing but my own cold hands cupped protectively to my chest. I know that I am loved. As a friend. I also know that contrary to pop culture, friendships can’t last forever. People move on, move out, move away, and become something different. So what am I waiting for. people tell me that suicide is selfishness. Why is that? Do they think that I am disregarding them and their emotions? I know that my death would hurt a lot of people. But right now MY LIFE is hurting a lot of people. They’ll mourn, briefly, and get over it, and be better off without me. So, why don’t I just rip off the band-aid already. Or better yet, fake my own LIFE. Tell everyone I’m moving away. give them a fake address and disconnected phone number, let them believe I’m happy somewhere far, far away.
THIS IS WHEN I KNEW THAT I WAS SERIOUS.
So what is keeping me here? What is stopping me from just “moving away”?
I DON’T KNOW.
I don’t know what is keeping my heart beating and my thoughts racing, because it’s certainly not me, or my consciousness. If I were truly in charge my heart it would have given out LONG ago. It’s epic drum solo come to an end. Something is keeping me here and I don’t have the drive to stand contrary to that. Sometimes when I drive on winding roads, I have to force myself to actually make the turns, instead of flying off into the brambles and bushes. Clinically this makes me Parasuicidal. I’m not going to commit suicide, but I certainly wouldn’t care If I just didn’t wake up.
So I continue to live, not because I want to, but because something inside has decided that I should, and I don’t have the heart to tell it that it’s wrong.
I have a real problem. Making friends has always been hard, but lately things have gotten even worse.
By nature I am shy, and little withdrawn, not preferring, but often resorting to spending evenings by myself to avoid uncomfortable situations. As a teenager I was obese, and even though I had many close friends, my high school experience was lacking in terms of most social standards. I didn’t date, or go to parties, or really interact at all. Instead I wasted my High School experience, wandering the halls alone to my classes and reading silently in a corner after eating my lunch. In this way I held myself separate from my friends and family whom I knew looked at me different for being obese and could never accept me for being gay. Each person I knew was a blind man and I was the elephant they were trying to describe, hiding in a baby-faced mask of cellulite, salt-stained folds of stretch-marked skin, muffin tops and man-boobs.
Then things changed. I graduated. I got a full time job. I bought 1000 dollars worth of missionary clothes that I knew that I would never use. I stopped going to church. I stopped worrying that I wasn’t going to church, and started worrying about other things, like calories, and body mass index and smaller clothes. I realized how easy it was to lose weight. I stopped eating. I lied about food. I told my parents I was eating at work, and my work I was eating at home. I lived off of low fat yogurt, cottage cheese and homemade granola. I slept, a lot. I got another job. I worked even harder and slept longer. I started to feel that everything I had ever really wanted in life could be possible. I realized I was wrong.
I ran from my family. A certain package full of gay merchandize was poorly wrapped and founds it’s way into my mothers hands. I came home from work to find them waiting for me. I ran. I ran to my room and locked the door, jumped into bed, ignoring the Ensign with bookmarked and highlighted pages on the sin of homosexuality placed so carefully there for me to find. I disappeared from my family’s lives, leaving for work before they woke and sneaking in after they went to bed. I didn’t talk for several weeks.
I moved to Logan and Logan set me free.
Making friends was still hard, but for different reasons. Before, even though I was hard to miss, I was invisible, and I kept it that way. Now, I made friends, plenty of friends. I was more social then I had ever been, but still I couldn’t trust any of them to show them who I really was. Surely, once they knew I was gay we could no longer be friends. What straight man wants to live with a gay guy? I had vowed that I would be open and honest with people from now on. Genuine. If someone asked me about my sexuality I would answer truthfully. But no one ever asked, so I never told and a new kind of dishonesty arose around me. Around this same time I starting dating someone for the first time ever. “Date” being a very loose term. I was physically and emotionally abused in this relationship and now, looking back I realize how naive and silly I was. In the backlash of that, with no one to talk to and no way for any of my roommates to understand what I was dealing with, I broke down and finally turned to one of my very good friends for support. Her acceptance and love saved me that semester and the summer that followed. This was were it started. One by one over the next year and a half I began to give myself to my friends and roommates. Trusting that people would be accepting and loving. Letting them see that my sexuality is only a very small part of who I am, just one aspect of the elephant.
Then came my current problem. Somewhere along the way I lost my filter. That innate part of myself that kept the core of myself safe from people. When I begin to trust someone enough to REALLY let them in I ended up giving them everything. I suppose I have a hard to time differentiating between emotional intimacy and physical. It’s hard for me to tell when I am being too personal. I’m either cold, fake, and distant, or instantly best friends with everyone I met. I keep falling horribly in love with my friends, and the getting rejected my them. disappearing for a while, then picking up the pieces and trying again, only to have the cycle continue. The disappearances keep getting longer and longer, the pieces smaller and smaller. I’m starting to lose myself and I don’t know how to stop it. Time and time again I convince myself that I don’t need anyone else, and am content in my solitude. Sadly, as good as I am at fooling others, I’ve never been very good at deceiving myself.
So that is where I’m at right now. I can’t stop putting myself out there and trusting in people. I don’t WANT to stop putting myself out there and trusting people. Just don’t be surprised when I disappear for a while. I’ll be back.
For the last five years or so, I have developed a hypersensitivity to the way society celebrates with food. It seems like we make EVERY excuse to get together and “treat” ourselves to something decadent and unhealthy, sometimes on a daily basis. There’s no end to the birthday cakes, holiday treats, halloween candy, BBQ’s, and family get-togethers. We justify celebratory meals for every occasion one can dream up. Can we seriously not interact with each other in a civil and lively matter without food being present? Do we really need to entice people to endure our company with the promise of a meal? Are we afraid that we wont have anything to say to each other and need something to pass the time in between awkward silences? For whatever reason, food is an integral part of basically every inter-social experience that we have, and as a celiac this drives me CRAZY.
Just to clarify things, I do not actually suffer from Celiac disease. I’m gluten intolerant (and lactose intolerant) and as most people have no idea what gluten is, I usually just save myself the trouble and tell them I’m the former.
Let me clarify further. I have never actually been tested for anything. I KNOW I am Lactose intolerant. I have several siblings who are as well, and honestly it’s not that hard to diagnose. But the only reason I so strongly keep to the gluten free lifestyle is because of the following. At the beginning of this year, when I was having all of my health problems that caused me to see a nutritionist, she suggested (because avoiding milk wasn’t completely illiminating the problem) going gluten free and after of only a few days of this i felt significantly better. So i thought to myself, why should i pay for an expensive test that is extremely inaccurate and usually inconclusive anyways, when I notice a clear benefit to my health and well-being without one?” Whether I am intolerant or not, I notice a rather big difference in the way I feel. This has been my general feelings on the subject.
Now let me clarify things to a point of translucency. I am anorexic. When I am strict with my diet and eating very little and/or nothing I feel better anyways. Can I trust myself and the way I feel when I stay gluten free, or am I feeling better simply because i am so dietarily restricted that I can justify my eating disorder to people? Celiac disease and gluten intolerance are both symptoms of prolonged anorexia, so it’s quite possible that I just brought this all onto myself. Even If I can look back at my childhood and sometimes see a pattern. Going one step even further, maybe this is all part of the anorexia itself and I feel sick when i eat gluten because i WANT to be celiac? Is this all in my head? Nothing is really clear at this point. When I stay strict to my diet, it fuels my eating disorder. I begin to be so strict that it’s hard to get myself to eat anything at all. This is the point when I usually stop, assess the situation and FORCE myself to eat something, this will continue for several days. Then, as I begin to feel the effects of the wheat on my system I man up and start the gluten free diet again.
The cycle continues, and it’s a circle of hate. A hate of wheat, of food, of you (the attractive friend/relative who eats anything and everything they want), and most of all a hatred for myself.
Today, my restless mind led me up the countless dusty stairs of old main. My feet carried me me past the thousands of dead flies and ladybugs that littered the floor and window ledges, up past the highest trees and the tallest rooftops to the heights of the bell tower, the altus, where I was greeted by a view that overlooks the entire valley in every direction. A view broken only by the dusky mountains in the distance. There, just within the rotund window frame was written in dark careful script:
“We came here to cry and found solace in each other, may all who come here find the beauty and truth they desire.”
After the last year (a real bastard), what better way to greet the morning than with this silent affirmation of companionship, written who-knows-when by who-knows-who for who-knows-what reason. More days should start like this.