Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

Graduation party

As two friends sat on one couch

Oh how I regret not officially meeting you. When I lie awake, I dream of all lost potential avenues to life.

When I am faced by the facet of life which requires experience & knowing, I falter. I stumble across my own ability to walk over and just say hello. Oh how terrible this feels! This is not who I am. I thought alcohol would help me, but no - it made me weaker.

What I have continually woken up to realize over the course of this short vacation is the fact that people just want each other to show up. Just be there & be present in the moment.

I felt my niece's friends calling me, "Just come, sit down. Talk." which I avoided doing at all costs. Selfishly, I tended to other social circles. Oh how I wanted to just join my Mother and these two young women chatting about who knows what. I deeply wanted to start that conversation, at least just to find out who these women were and whether I wanted to talk with them some more.

Her hair was cut just like my Brother's Daughter: One side is shaved, but unlike my younger relative, just above the buzz, her hair cut short, combed across the opposite side of her face. A beautiful woman. That is why I could not bring myself to approach her.

And I awoke with this sinking feeling that a part of me was displaced by avoiding her. My identity was torn by my conscious struggle to maintain my distance from this young woman. What am I running from?

Oh how I regret ever feeling that I am not enough! Surely I am not the only person in the room who felt insecure, but I make it the most apparent through my unwillingness to engage; more so by my willingness to disengage at any glimpse of the potential to begin an engagement. Through my rigid body language, I cowar in fear of the others' mighty draw of swords; I am a mere peasant, wondering amongst knights & queens.

I feel less than I appear to be. I was less of a man I was last night. After catching the gaze of my relative's friend, it appeared as a shy onlooking, one perhaps of wondering.

To whom shall I surrender?

What becomes of me through socialization should not be the product of a religious surrender; it should be the product of my own willingness to become a better person, yet I often place myself in the cross hairs of those religious folk who swear that everything would just be better when I surrender to God.

Lo and behold, I have not changed through my own willingness to do such. When I see a woman like this, waiting for me to approach her - my heart crumbles like a besieged castle wall.

First of all - being the situation was my niece's graduation party and also being that I had not visited her house in a great number of years, I already felt anxious & out of place. There's that. Then there is also the fact that none of my relationships with anyone at the party aside from my Mom gained any meaning by my being there - well, I say that now, but I think showing my niece the support and being there, I mean, it probably meant something.

Not to mention the fact that I rekindled my relationship with my Brother In-Law, who I've missed from my life for several years. The last time I spoke to him was around the time was just a year after my Father passed away. It was a miserable time.

Just start my day

The wares of my conscience is volatile; how I felt when I awoke the morning after was, "My life is over without officially knowing my niece's two college friends, yet I must get up from my slumber and take my first step of the day, for self-mutilation & suicide is not an honorable way of moving past this heavy weight on my conscience."

These dramas in my mind replay like broke records.

Did I train myself to be this way? Well of course! Nobody taught me how to devote my soul to the emotion one feels whilst listening to a Norma Jean album or to think over the details of moments proceeding from the point I first saw this woman in the grand stands of my niece's graduation ceremony. I loved that my nephew rushed over to her the moment he saw her. It was like - she's one of the good ones. I respect her through my nephew's appreciation. Unfortunately however, I often think too quickly that we could be something more than just friends.

I feel as though we've known each other for a long time, yet I am afraid to approach her; I'm really afraid of being seen chatting up my niece's college friend. That's really the matter here. Maybe I am wrong to think that it's not okay to chat up the young woman.

I feel despair in these early hours of my morning - I miss her. Just like I miss one whom I have not seen in many years; detached through my dysfunctional family ties. Love is utter treachery like this - my love is so very volatile when I feel deeply about someone. It's dangerous to feel this strongly when I am not in touch with my emotions. I think I often confuse myself as for what is normal level of infatuation with the confusion which lies behind many of my own falsities when it comes to how I handle relationships.

Struggle with emotions, I do and for many a year to come, I may. Maintaining a level head is lost on me when I even THINK of approaching a woman I find attractive. All reason is thrown out the window.

When I feel how I do, I allow the feeling to run its course through my life. This, I think is what allows me to experience the spectrum of emotion in a matter; I have time to experience these things. I do not brush things off easily. I think them over, I reflect on them - about how I feel, how she may have felt, how wrong I was to ignore her, how she must've felt by being ignored. I allow my emotions to fully propagate into my being.

For women in particular, in their aura or influence; I am either thrown into a deep pool with bricks tied to my ankles, or I am capable of flying higher than the clouds. I am able to soar above cities, or feel like I'm stuck in a storm drain with no exit and there's a downpour of rainwater rushing through bars from which I grasp, peering out of like I'm in a prison. I may not be great at describing infatuation, but hey - I try.

Avoidance isn't any better for me

And I think somehow avoidance is going to lessen the effects of infatuation? Surely avoidance does not resolve much - it only allows us to die slowly with the pain of regret on our mind. My consciousness in this matter regards fear as a stumbling block rather than fear as motivation to dive in and find out if the person is into us as we are to them.

Where is the love?

Love is like a dark abyss of an ocean. I must repel into it - eventually. I must. Thinking of Pope's quote from the TV show Outer Banks, "And to quote The Hobbit, “Down, down, to Goblin Town. Down, down, you go, my lad.” though I know nothing about The Hobbit and also, Goblin Town seems a place on land.

An abyss of love is like repelling down a deep dark water well of fear & unknowing, in hopes of finding a glistening treasure. I stood nearby though; I dare not dive down a deep, dark well full of fear & unknowing. Shy as I have ever been - too tense even to say hello.

Now we can see why I do not approach women. I feel this attraction only for particular women, of course. I feel this not very often, but one which I feel deeply.

There is no way for me to know if what I feel is right, because I do not even encourage the potential to experience something beside my own anxiety of avoiding someone that might have even a remote chance of being attracted to me the way I am to them.

I remember lying in bed at 14 years old, mourning a lost relationship with a girl, lamenting over it in my mind as I listened to Norma Jean - Pretty Soon, I Don't Know What, But Something Is Going To Happen. I gave up my soul to over analyzing everything there was that I had done wrong, even if it was at no fault of anyone in particular - from that day forward.

The plank of despair

I felt utter despair toward myself when I came across women. My deep love for a woman draws me closer to the plank above a deep, dark abyss. There are many who will take the love I have to give, to merely dishonor God and I have no idea how to find the ones who won't trample over me to spite Him.

Seemingly though, we're all already in the abyss, looking for the light in the darkness, swimming through space & time, hoping the next one is the one. We're all in it, aren't we? Oh how I wish I could just see her - it was special. She was there and I was there. And then I wasn't there, yet she remained. This is the story of my life. I am present for a second until I feel the urge to mingle and then I recluse. This is not who I am, truly.

It doesn't matter though - I show everyone who I am when I am there. That's what's so damn difficult to just show up for one's own life. Knowing I am not much, nothing special, yet being there for my niece because she graduated was on my mind. I was just there, just like her friends were there; to support her in that moment. It was a memory in the making.

The terror of knowing our absences

The whole thing is an emotional experience. From the moment my niece was called to cross the stage at the ceremony, I showed my true self for three seconds - how proud I was and yet also how ashamed I was for not being a part of her life for the last ten years. If I had continued yelling into the ether - I would have broken down and began crying.

If I could just put that seriousness on more of my life, unafraid of what other people thought of me, I will make that move toward the woman I can hold my gaze for, who also sees me - maybe that's the point of all this; there's something here that I should learn.

Just be yourself, show up for your own life, take more chances and trust yourself that you know what you want - if she's the one, then make it happen; find out what's possible. We cannot stress so much for the losses we feel so deeply toward those whose lives we never put in the work to be a part of.

We may wish we approached when she was there and we were there. She'll become a distant memory over many months and eventually the idea of ever knowing this person, that spark of life & that glimpse of infatuation will fade.

This is the me who gives up. I could move mountains to meet her - but that might actually be creepy to show that kind of interest after the fact I basically rejected her.

There are moments for everything, there are situations from which we can draw meaning, and others where we can build relationships. Sometimes I think I need to be reminded how terrible I feel toward not reaching out - to also lament on these truths before me. To really truly realize how I actually feel.

Is loneliness less painful than love?

When I see women I'm attracted to, I see & feel how much pain I truly am in, which drives me into this deep sense of adoration. That which I avoid at all costs! I determined love  to be more painful than loneliness.

Why? I've already done this to my family and it is not a productive feeling. Avoiding the losses of life that life will undoubtedly present us with only makes us weaker; it does not help us move on & evolve.

I've already checked out - believing checking out would make life easier. Surely life is not easier! Surely it is more depressing, more melancholy, more destructive, more of all the worst things you could think of!

When so much of your heart yearns for a woman, to not approach a woman is like a tear in my gut, in my heart, and in my soul.

What should make me think that perhaps I shouldn't devote my heart to these weary times? These are the moments we live for, are they not? These are the days we should slow down to meet that woman we have our eyes on, should we not? It behooves us to approach them, regardless of our preconceptions of who we think we are and who we think they are.

Herein lies another reason I try to avoid those situations - in the moment, I become exhilarated by the thought of making a new friend that I am hyped. Is that wrong? No! It's not wrong, but all my life I have felt apologetic for becoming hyped around others. I can be super hyped and be silly and goofy, that's who I am and I try to hide it. I am utterly ashamed of who I am.

I try to appear "normal," but really all that does in the end is make me glitch, quirky, and odd. All that energy comes out in the form of illness whether it's mental or it's physical - well, it's mostly mental. Torment. Anguish. Despair. Unceasing despair.

Time is wasted on the youth

Oh how many days have I lost fomenting over the carnage on my mind. The isolation encourages my curiosity of my own despair; pornography & gruesome media, the lot of it. The despair, the torment - it's real. Hidden away, checked out, addicted to my own isolation. Oh how inhumane I have treated my self! Though in the wake of the death to my past life, I here reside to write. I here reside to explain the meaningfulness of life, of living, of being.

Here I reside, in my Sister's home for a short while longer - sure, we will go and have fun together, sure I will appear normal, but when I am alone - I dread my existence. I dread the fact that I am not going to be the person I need to be, when I need to be it - when that woman crosses my path again whoever that woman is, will I be ready to reach out? Will I be willing? Will I be courageous? That is what I wonder. Just thinking about it again, it's like this roller coaster between a dream state of love and back to the acrobatics of turmoil and back again.

Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

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Fenix-Aarizon: A Three Week Graduation
Fenix-Aarizon: A Three Week Graduation

A series of journals I wrote over the course of three weeks to attend a relative's graduation ceremony & short family reunion and two weeks later, a full weekend for a large family reunion.

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