So, this week sucked for me. I shouldn’t say this but, fuck it, it’s true. I’ll start off with a simple list of exactly what happened this week, then I’ll explain why this week sucked because of all of that.

1. I woke up Monday morning in fucking AGONY.
2. Found out that I needed to have my gall bladder removed.
3. Spent the better part of two days unable to eat or drink anything.
4. Had my first, and hopefully last, surgery.
5. Found out I could have died.
6. And spent the entire four days I was in the hospital in incredible pain.
7. Spent most of my last day and night in the hospital fighting for a friendship (which I genuinely want) with a woman (who I, sadly still, also genuinely want) who is one of the most important people in the world to me.

And the number one reason this week sucked, before I give a much fuller explaination, is that the entire time I was lonely.

So I woke up Monday morning, around 6:30 in the morning, after only sleeping 3 hours (I miss all the sleep I got living with my ex,) in incredible pain. It was a pain I’ve felt before, a tight pain just below my right ribs in front and in my back, so I figured it would wain over time. As the morning wore on it only increased and my tolerance of it wore down slowly. Eventually my sister showed up, having been called by my mother, and muscled me into her car to take me to the hospital. I was in no position, or physical state, to argue with anyone about anything. I grabbed as much of my shit as I could manage and litterally crawled out to the car. I laid myself down in the back seat and huddled up on the floor with my phone.

As we were pulling away from the apartment my phone vibrated with a flurry of activity. I received several texts from a guy from my church (which I’m growing increasingly tired of) and an email from my ex responding to one I’d sent her. With trembling fingers I typed out a response to both informing them I’d not be able to repond properly because I was headed to the hospital. In response I received a text from my ex telling me she’d he praying and asked to be kept updated.

I’ll cut this short, and boil down four days of my life to their bare essentials. I lay in bed for four days with no one to keep me company. My mother sat with me most of Monday, my sisters came by for ten minutes on Tuesday, and again on Wednsday. I got cut open and had parts of me removed and I had to go through the whole thing alone. Though it was unlikely, it was still possible that something terrible could have happened in that hospital and I would have been alone when it happened. I originally put off this surgery because someone I loved couldn’t be there, because they wanted to be, and because I didn’t want to be alone. Two years later everything was different. Two years later I had no choice, I couldn’t put it off. And I had no one who was asking me to wait until they could be there. That same person for whom I had put off this surgery before wouldn’t be there, wouldn’t allow herself. And the oddest thing about the week is that same woman, that same woman who wouldn’t be there, was the only person to sort of keep me company. Several texts a day were exchanged between the two of us and, while it was good to talk to someone who mattered so much to me, they served to remind me how far I’d come from the last time I should have that surgery. I laid there in that bed as texts came through from her every couple of hours and thought about how differently that experience was from what I thought it would ever be like if I had that surgery before. I got messages from her that expressed concern but not love. Messages that asked about my physical state but not about me. They were nearly as distant in tone as the other people in my life were in proximity and it hurt. It hurt because I wanted her there. I wanted anyone, but especially her, to care enough to really be there for me and I didn’t have that from anyone. I went through all of in alone and she, the one I wanted most to actually be there, was the only one who even tried. And it sucked because I knew even in that attempt that she wasn’t really there. She wouldn’t be there the way I wanted or needed someone to be there for me. And I completely understood why she couldn’t be. I knew the way I was feeling wasn’t her fault in the least, she just caught some of it because she was there. No, she wasn’t physically there the way I would’ve liked, but she was there and her texts kept me company. And because she gave me that, because she was there, she caught the focus of my loneliness and that was wrong. It sad how we as humans tend to lash out, even if in our own heads, at the people who are right in front of us instead of those who deserve it. I know in my life I’ve caught a lot of shit that I had absolutely nothing to do with. But, to be honest, I could blame the drugs too becuse they were AMAZING. And not in a good way (not that there is ever really a good way with drugs.) Any way, I should probably suck it up and stop feeling sorry for myself. Sure, I almost died but it’s not like it was the first time. Hell, by my count, which is fairly accurate, it was the 22nd or 23rd (ok, maybe my count isn’t specifically accurate) so I should be well use to facing my mortality. Life’s a funky thing sometimes and you either roll with the tides or you get crushed by it. I prefer the rolling, myself. It looks way cooler.

(Dammit, none of my posts ever start and end with the same purpose anymore. I need to learn to be more coherant, or at least how to start making some kind of sense one of these days.)

Crotch

I Gotta Be Me

Recently, as in for the last 87 days, I’ve had a lot of people give me advice about a lot of things. Don’t do this, do that sort of stuff. None of which has been taken by me. Not because I’m arogant, though some may disagree, but because I know who I am and what I’m going to do in most situations. I would love to have taken of that advice, to have been the sort of person who was mutable enough in themselves to take some of the advice I’ve been given, but I didn’t and I’m not. At the end of the day I’ve worked hard, gone through a lot of shit, and made a lot of mistakes to become who I am and I love this person. It took me a long to time to really realize that but I honestly feel it now and I can’t change. I can grow, I can become stronger in who I am, but I can’t change who I am. I gotta be me, as the song goes. Sometimes it sucks, sometimes I lose, but sometimes I win a hell of a lot and it’s wonderful. I’ve got to live MY life, not the life other people want for me because if it’s not what I want how the hell am I going to be happy with it? I’m not. I’ll be miserable and will always be wanting something different than what I have. Rebellion is a bitch but when it comes to personal matters, especially as important as self-awareness, it wins out in the end so there’s really no point fighting it. And there’s really no point fighting with me about my nature because it’s going to win and I’m going to do things my way.

I believe in compromise and self moderation, no human can make it in life without some of both, but not to the point that it changes your identity. When you go to bed at night, and wake up in the morning, no matter if you’re alone or with someone special, it’s just you looking back from the mirror. It’s terribly trite but it’s certainly true. And at the end of your life it’s just going to be you that goes into the ground or turned to ash and you better be able to say you lived life on your terms as much as you could. Otherwise, as far as I’m concerned, what’s the point. I’m sure it’s no fun living life on someone elses terms, and I’ve known a few people who do, and I certainly never want to do it.

My greatest goal in this life is to make people happy, to love them more than anyone. To make them smile, laugh, lighten their load, that’s why I’m here. And it makes me happy when I succeed and sad when I don’t. But I keep trying. I keep reaching out and giving myself because it’s who I am and what I want to do with my life. Sure, I’ve got dreams and other, more tangible, goals but this one defines me as a person. Some people think it’s foolish, some people think I give too much, but I don’t think either. And that’s why I haven’t taken any of the advice given or acknowledged any of it’s wisdom. I’ve got to be me and at last I’m ok with who that is. Even if nobody else around me right now is. They’ll get over their disappointment or frustration because, frankly, I love them all too much for them to not forgive me my quirks eventually. So, inevitably, I win.

Crotch

I am going to endeavor to make this my last post on the subject of my break up with my ex-fiancĂ©. I won’t make any promises because circumstances have shown me promises are foolish sometimes. They’re verbal contracts that have no remedy when broken, at least none of the ones I’ve ever made. But I will say this, I’ve NEVER broken a promise. I’m old fashioned like that. It’s the old west standard of when a man gives his word her better damn well be good for it and I’ve worked my whole life to live by that standard.

Anyway. The last thing I want to talk about regarding this break up is family. Hers to be more specific. Now for anyone who knows anything about the situation between my ex and I this will come as a pretty big shock. I miss them too. In many ways I should be happy that I am no longer the subject of scorn and ridicule the way I once was, but that stopped and I forgave them a long time ago. I never much appreciated some of the things said about either myself or my own family but I understood where they were coming from. I didn’t agree but I understood. And we buried any hatchet between us at Christmas when he father apologized and hugged me. That fairly simple action was so touching that I had no choice but forgive them. That is if I hadn’t already done so long before. It was always a strange experience for me, knowing there were people in the world who thought ill of me because I am generally well liked by anyone I’ve ever had any interaction with. But what happened wasn’t so much about me as it was about them and their loving their daughter. They were afraid I would hurt and take advantage of her and it never occurred to them that I genuinely loved her and wanted nothing more than to care for her. So despite there having been a somewhat negative history between her parents and myself, I’ll still miss them because I loved them too. Not nearly as much as I loved her but that’s natural. They were both good people (her father specifically I thought was a wonderful man who I thought I would really connect with if we’d ever really had the chance. Her mother I never got much of a feel for. There was awkwardness on both sides and some hurt feelings as well but I thought she was a wonderful woman who I had looked forward to working towards a relationship with) at heart who showed their love and concern in ways that they themselves weren’t proud of and at the end of the day I can’t fault them. To be honest it seems, based on conversation and my own intuition, that their relationships with her is much better for my having been in their daughter’s life and that makes me happy for all those involved. I wish I could be there to share the experience, don’t mistake that in the least, I’m just happy that they’ve all come through stronger because of my being a part I their lives for the time that I was.

That’s just her parents, I haven’t even spoken about her brother. He was someone I knew we could have been good friends if things had worked out differently. We were similar in a lot of ways that weren’t ever that obvious and had things in common that we never had a chance to connect over. I’ve been just as happy for him when things have been good for him as they all were and I worried just as much when they weren’t good. He’s a great guy that I’ll miss the opportunity to be friends with. He’s enlisting in the army soon and I’ve been praying like crazy that they don’t send him somewhere he’ll get hurt.

This may all seem weird to someone who doesn’t know me, and weirder still to some of those that do, but it’s my reality. I’ve spent four and a half years loving this woman and four years wanting to marry her someday. So it’s natural, at least for me, to form strong feelings and attachments to her family. Hell, I wanted to be a member of that family someday so why wouldn’t I. But that’s gone now.

And since I am going to try to make this my last depressing post I’ll lay it all out here. In list form even.
Things I’ve lost (or am going to miss):
The love of a beautiful woman who was perfect for me
A bright, wonderfully beautiful, future
My best friend in the world
Years and years of memories that we’ll never form
A wife
A family
Someone to love and care for
Someone to share life with
“Home”
And a bunch of things that are impossible to put into words (for a lot of reasons)

And one thing I’ve lost that means I’ll never have back any of this: the chance to prove I’m different than she thinks or capable of so much more.

There. That’s it. I’m done with these posts. I can’t change anything that has happened, no matter how much I want to. I’ll probably never have her back the way I want most. I’ll probably never get any I that list back from her. And I’ll probably spend a significant portion, if not all of, my life hoping things will change between us. But I’ve said it, you’ve read it, she’ll likely never do so (and if she does it won’t change anything,) and I’m putting this topic to bed. It’s gotten old and I’ve revealed WAY too much of myself here. So if you’re really interested in more information or curious how I’m doing with all of this I suggest you just ask. You can figure out how to contact me fairly easily I would imagine, especially whoever keeps linking from my Myspace. From now on it’ll be more creative stuff, when I can be bothered, or it’ll be random shit that occurs to me because that’s what we set this thing up for in the first place.

Crotch

Is hope ever foolish? I’ve asked myself this question a lot, several times a day actually, over the last 79 days. I’ve come down on both sides of this question equally and that drives me crazy. I know that a satisfactory answer will probably never come unless either answer is proven true. I’ll know it is foolish if we never get back together (which is probably the hardest answer on me to have proved because I still have to hold onto hope, on some level, to have it proved to be foolish.) I’ll know it’s not if we do get back together (which is nearly as hard on me for much the same reason.) I don’t want to hope in something I have serious doubts about. I don’t want to hold onto hope for something I don’t think will ever happen. That hope is nearly as painful as not having that which I hope for. It has taken on all the weight of my thoughts of her and it feeds on them. And it does it despite my very reasonable lack of belief in that hope. I can’t turn it off. I can’t let it go. And I don’t know how to move on as long as part of me is still waiting to live that lost life again. Sure it would be different, a hundred times better, we’ve both learned enough to make it work with minimal effort to maximum gain but it’s not going to happen. She doesn’t love me the way she’d need to for us to get back together. She stopped loving me that way months ago and there’s been no change or reason for her to start again. And she made sure, as politely and with effort to make it as painless as possible, to assert that fact when we spoke. And I should really thank her for it but it hurts too much. And I’ve had hope in us plenty of times that she made sure, with more unintentional cruelty, that I had no more reason to hope then I do now. So maybe it doesn’t matter what she says or does because I’m going to feel or think whatever it is I’m going to. I just wish there was a switch I could flip or a button I could press that would end all of this. And either we’d get back together and be happy the way I know we could be or I’d stop loving her as a woman and wanting to spend the rest of my life with her. Science really needs to work on this. It would stop a lot of needless suffering.

Crotch

Interview and Housing problem

So, I have an interview this coming tuesday for a new job. If I get it, which based on the conversation I had with the HR woman seems highly possible, I will be making more than I have in a long time. I’m looking forward to both the interview and, if I get it, the job. Where the problem for me arises is its location. It is right down the street, highly conveinent walking distance, from my old apartment. If things hadn’t ended the way they did this job, and its proximity to home, would be awesome. The job still is, its just where it is that sucks since I don’t live there anymore. But I’ll be able to move back to the city again which, despite there being plenty of reasons not to like San Francisco, I’m looking forward to. We’ll see what happens with everything.

I wish everything positive didn’t remind me of everything negative in my life. That’s the problem with heart ache, it turns you into a pessimist.

Crotch

One of the more difficult aspects of a break up of the kind I’ve experienced is the missing of the other person. When it’s not an occurance that you either wanted or needed the consequences are drastic and terrible. That’s in no way to say that the other person doesn’t miss you as well, it’s just that in many ways that shows itself differently to them. I’m sure, based on a recent conversation with her, that my ex misses me and for many of the reasons I miss her. It’s where the difference is that makes my position more difficult. We were the best friends either of us ever had, or perhaps ever will, and had a connection that is impossible to explain (which I can honestly say without any sense of hyperbole.) There was just something magical and mysterious that bound us to each other that you don’t find that often, if ever, in this life. And that is certainly worth missing and wanting back as part of your life. That kind of connection is beyond belief for most people and the loss of it is exquisitly painful.

For me there was always the added element of love that bound my heart to her. Love as every linguistic term or element. And it was, and unfortunately for me still is (I’m trying my best to let it go, but it’s hard,) an incredibly powerful feeling. Sometimes I feel that I loved her too much and she felt at times that I didn’t love her enough but it doesn’t matter who was right now because those fights are all behind us now. I’d be ecstatic if they weren’t, if they could have eventually evolved into cute fights over who loved who more but that chance is gone now.

But it’s not about these things that I wanted to write today. I wanted to write about one of the things I view as being among the more difficult things to deal with in a break up of this sort-sharing life with someone. This is something I am, and have been, finding really hard to handle. For nearly four years (cumulatively) we shared each others lives. All the happiness, pain, boredom, quiet moments, fun parties and mutual friends were shared. Now that they’re not the lack of that is painful. It’s been a beautiful, though slightly chill, day and neither of us knows what the other one has done with it. That’s natural given the circumstances but imagining what we could have done with this day is hard. It’s hard to explain what I mean, especially coming from the recognition that I’m no longer the only one who visits this site, but it sucks. We are meant to share our lives with people. They make our lives what they are and make them worth living. Which can be said of anyone in your life. They need not be as important to you as she is to me but it makes everything better if they are.

At the end of the day I miss a lot of things about being with her. Some that only make sense to me, some that might not even make sense to her, some that are obvious and natural in any romantic relationship. But it’s the sharing each others lives the way only significant others can that encompasses all of them. We’ll never have that again, unless my hope proves not to be as foolish as it feels and she takes me back, but I sadly don’t ever see that happening. We may someday be friends again, if I can stop loving and wanting to be with her, but things will never be the same because there is a huge difference, from my perspective, between taking part in someone’s life and sharing it. I don’t how to really explain any of this but maybe I don’t need to. Maybe you know what I mean and maybe you felt it too. If so, you have my sympathy because this hurts and I don’t wish that on anyone.

Crotch

“With every breath I’m tasting your kiss”

I must start out by stating the obvious: I am an enormous music snob. I’m sure it’s needlessly so, especially for someone who loves music as much as I do, but it is unfortunately true. I have very specific criteria by which I judge anything I hear. This isn’t unusual, everyone has their own criteria, their own taste upon which they judge music, movies, books and people. Mine’s just sadly more excluding then others while also being far more inclusive than most. It can’t be described or explained, it just is what it is. I have been both lovingly and teasingly chastised for my seemingly arbitrary judgement standards. It is something I have both held onto tenaciously and tried my best to loosen my grasp on. I’m not proud of it, especially in light of my generally broad musical taste and appreciation, but something I have struggled with. How does one reconcile something unexplainably part of them with the logical recognition that it is foolish? I just don’t know, but I am working on it.

Which leads me to the purpose of this post. Several weeks ago I had run out of books that I felt like reading. For one reason or another I have been unable to settle on one book over another for most of the last couple months. I have picked up easily a hundred books and been unable to delve further into them than the first twenty pages or so. I have read a few things, oddly enough they are either incredibly long classics or random things suggested by others, in this time but haven’t fallen in love with anything. Including the book that allowed me to push back the boundaries of my musical judgement a little. I was in a second hand book store looking for an out of print edition of a book that had been suggested to me. When I found out that they didn’t have it I wandered over to the section containing some of my favorite authors looking to pick up anything by them that I’d yet to read. I eventually picked up Songbook by Nick Hornby. Hornby has long been one of, if not my absolute, favorite authors. His voice is well defined, unique, and conversational. Reading his books, for me at least, is like hanging out with a good friend telling you a story. Even his nonfiction is like this, which is what Songbook is. The book is a series of essays on some of his favorite songs and why they are his favorites or how he connects to them. The edition of the book I picked up had some additional material that hadn’t been in the first printing. And it is from this that I found my interest piqued enough to pick up a country album, something that to most who know me will be surprising.

Based on what Hornby wrote about the music, which wasn’t describe specifically, I became curious. I pulled out my phone and opened up my Pandora App and typed in “Steve Earle.” When the music began I wasn’t much impressed. It sounded run of the mill country/rock/pop. Then the next song came on and it was the same sound but by a different artist. I felt let down by Nick and determined to stop listening. Then the next song came on, one which he actually wrote about, and my heart stopped. The song was Galway Girl. It’s not the best song ever but it does have some beautiful mandolin playing and I first heard it last summer in a bar in Ireland standing next to my then fiancĂ©. Then it was played by request by a small Irish band to a crowded room of locals and tourists all hungry for their “Irish experience.” Well they got it that night and so did we. Having heard the song I looked up what album it was on and downloaded it immediately. Was it in someway musical torture? Probably, but good music is good music and I’m not going to run away from that just because it makes me cry.

I’ve listened to the album several times over sense I first got it on my phone and it continues to grow on me and forces me to reevaluate my judgements. Good music speaks to you and some of the best speaks for you. It helps you articulate thoughts or feelings that are too complex or too poignant for you to come to yourself. It enriches those thoughts and feelings that you can come to yourself and adds irrevocably to your life. This is what Steve Earle’s Transcendental Blues album has done for me. It says things to hard for me to say, it lifts my spirits when I need them lifted (which right now is often,) and it had added something beautiful to my life. The lyrics to some of the songs reach right inside my heart and pull out the words that have been trapped by my swirling emotions. It pulls them out and shows them to me so that I can see just what it is I’m feeling when things have become too difficult to look at with any kind of reason or logic. Almost every song on the album has something to say either to me or for me and I wish I could share that, I wish I could pass that along to the person I want most to hear it. I had the opportunity to do so a couple of weeks ago but didn’t and I think I know why. I wanted to hold onto something for myself, something that couldn’t be used to speak to someone else the way I’m sure other things I’ve given probably have been or will be someday. But maybe that’s selfish. Music isn’t meant to be held onto jealously, no expression is, it’s meant to be spread so that it can find a home in the hearts of anyone who will have it.

Regardless of why I Think I didn’t share it, the fact is I didn’t because I didn’t want to expose myself anymore than I already had done. The lyrics would have shown my feelings for what they are better than I had the ability at the time to communicate. And that’s what music does, it exposes you. Whether it’s to yourself or to someone else, it pulls back a curtain inside you and reveals something secret that no one knew was there.

I’ll end this here because I am verging on being overly philosophical and getting away from my purpose (I’ve been doing a lot of both the last couple months and not necessarily here.) Buy the album and listen to it. Look up the lyrics and you’ll see something. Maybe it won’t be what I see and maybe it won’t speak either to or for you the way it does for me. But if you do, you’ll know more about how I’m feeling than most of these posts have shown, more than I have either the strength or ability to articulate myself right now. Especially “Lonelier Than This,” and “Halo Round The Moon.” They’re both beautiful songs that say a hell of a lot for me and hopefully will for you too.

At the end of the day I’ve learned that my judgements need to be less harsh and maybe music isn’t meant to be judged as critically as I have most of my life. Someone tried to teach me that lesson once and maybe because of her, and years of her bringing music to my life I would disregard out of hand otherwise, I may finally be learning that lesson.

Crotch