Spooky

Okay, this stuff is just damned spooky. Of the list of 11 symptoms which indicate depression, I have had all of them, and have most of them right now. Plus, I have all the physical symptoms mentioned also. I guess the only symptom that I can say I haven’t had consistently is the thoughts about death, if that means thoughts of doing something to myself.

“1. Depressed mood most of the day (nearly everyday)
2. Markedly diminished interest in daily activities
3. Significant weight loss or gain
4. Insomnia or excessive sleeping.
5. Agitation or slowing of purposeful movements
6. Fatigue-probably the most common symptom of depression
7. Feelings of worthlessness
8. Diminished ability to think
9. Recurrent thoughts of death
10. Reduced sex drive
11. Inability to enjoy activities that have always been fun in the past”

People with depression “may have numerous other physical symptoms such as irritability, anxiety, sleep disturbances, low sex drive, abdominal pain, irritable bowel syndrome or headaches.”

And this struck me: “When people become depressed there is a tendency to blame the depression on a present or past event in life. They will say they are depressed because they lost their job, or they are going through a divorce. Most people fail to realize that the reason they lost their job, or are having marital problems, is because of the depression that occurred initially. A spouse with a low sex drive, inability to enjoy life, irritability, and constant fatigue is not much fun to be around.”

Quotes are from this source

The old place

I was talking to A’s brother about dominoes and was thinking about the last time I played being at the old place. It feels funny calling the “old” place. I still think of it as being home, like I should drive up there for the night and tuck in with her for the night, but that’s a million miles away now.

The worst part is that to be honest with myself I have to realize that being together was not really happy for either of us. I think we were definitely in love and that carried us through a great many things. I’m not sure if that makes it worse that I have no moral ground on which to stand and say, “We were wonderful together all the time.” I can’t say that, and yet I wish I could. My wishes aren’t enough to change anything, certainly not the past.

First, I probably have to be honest and say that I was a rotten boyfriend. I was variously moody, clingy, grumpy, distant, cynical, sarcastic, hurtful, angry, needy and, last but certainly not all, difficult. I want to ignore all that, but I can’t. I’m definitely the co-creator of the present lack of us.

I think we also had many times where we were happy and definitely in love, but I also did my part in creating hurt. I felt uncomfortable when a comment was made that she’s the only one that seems to be getting hurt. That wasn’t true of our relationship. We’ve both come out of this hurt, but she seems to have a strategy to deal with it, in a way, or something.

Anyhow, I hurt her by being overly critical. I hurt her by being demanding. For several months, I hurt her by having difficulty dealing with her desire for sex. (that’s a long one to explain.) I hurt her by being distant when I was depressed and feeling helpless about my job. I hurt her by being grumpy when doing activities like hiking or taking walks, finding something to be upset about in almost any situation. I hurt her by putting the kibosh on her when she came home from school full of joy. I hurt her by making her feel guilty for spending time away from me.

For all of this, I feel like it was mostly due to outside issues. Of course, it’s completely natural that she feel that all of that was due to my inherent personality. The truth, I’m sure, is somewhere in between.

We were great in public, but we tended to argue when alone. We’d argue about the dumb stuff, and get snippy at eachother over little things. There were, it turns out, quite a few times that she would complain to her mom or step-mother that she loved me, but I was an ass.

When we first started to argue, we were delighted to see, for example, other couples argue because we realized that the arguments were the same, and so felt okay, or at least not abnormal. But we never really managed to avoid the tension, and stop arguing. It wasn’t constant, but it was consistant, if you know what I mean.

Well, for each thing that I did to create hurt in the relationship, there’s at least two stories about why and how, but it’s important for me to make sure her family knows that I don’t think I’m without blame, or that somehow I’m the martyr. It’s not so.

I have issues I need to deal with. I’m quite certain that I’ve been for many years able to answer yes to almost all, if not all, of the questions used to identify the symptoms of depression. Turns out that my mother, my uncle and my grandmother are all on medication to help with seratonin levels. It also turns out that alcoholism, which runs on both sides of the family, can be a contributing factor to problems with seratonin levels in the brain.

I have issues about self-worth. I have issues about an inability to believe myself worth of love or capable of giving it. I have issues with my sexuality and sex drive. I have learned pessimism and helplessness.

Anyhow, the list goes on.

So, while I, irrationally perhaps, cling to the idea that A. might harbor enough love for me to overcome my faults and miraculously want to be with me, I have to realistically say that she’s probably right when she said that the only chance we have of a future together would be if we started completely over fresh.

Of course, there’s the further hurdle of her anger and the inevitable identification of what happened with what had previously happened with her and Jay … to the point that only a total goober like myself would imagine in a million years that there was a chance for real.

So, we are apart because we both have issues, in spite of my fervent wish that what we had was enough and that we somehow be able to find happiness together.

Which brings me to what she’s doing … or what I think she’s doing. She had met the guy she’s hanging out with at Wow’s one night when she and the girls were out. They had talked for a while and at the end of the night he gave the other girls hugs, but when she wouldn’t, he kissed her hand and gave her his number saying something like, “I know you’re involved, but give me a call if you want to have coffe or something.”

A. had mentioned this incident to me, and we’d talked about it a little. I missed the point, I suppose, that she was feeling odd because she was finding someone else interesting which would perhaps be a sign that she wasn’t getting what she wanted from the relationship.

I found out that they’d started to hang out more, her and that guy, because I screwed up and read her diary one night when she was out, supposedly with the girls. She got home that morning at 10am, and I had been up all night moving stuff, including a 3am run with a load to my mom’s, mainly because I was going nuts.

Anyhow, I confronted her by admitting that I had read the diary, so she then really started to talk to me about all the anger that she’d been building up. It’s like she finally felt she could bring up the things that she’d not felt like she could talk about before. (This would in part be due to her feeling that I bit her head off on small stuff, so how could she be comfortable dealing with big stuff, but I’m sure that there’s also a part that has to do with not being able to accept that such anger had a place in a working relationship, and not being able to express or allow herself to feel anger.)

I pointed out that this was a continuation of a pattern: finding a guy to replace a guy. She acknowledged this. Her fear was that it meant she was becoming like her mother, but I expressed that it wasn’t that she was her mother, but that she was human. (I’d previously been dealing with my fear of becoming my failure father, and she helped me by trying to make me understand that I wasn’t my father, so this was a nice reciprocation. Even when dysfunctional, we supported each other.)

She thinks that she is not going after a serious relationship. She thinks that she’s found someone that’s interesting and that she is going to take time to get to know, instead of diving in. She claimed that she didn’t love him, and that it wasn’t anything like how she felt for me when we got together. She had said at the time that she made it clear that she was still planning on dating me too.

When we talked about her having space, one of the things that she stated at the beginning was that she was planning on dating other people while this was going on. At various points I thought we’d made progress or something in staying committed to eachtoher at least enough to keep dating, and at one point I thought we’d agreed that I would be the one that she’d be intimate with during this period, but our two understandings appear to have not been the same through the various conversations we had.

She thought that she is going to remain single for at least through the rest of her college, but she’s clearly intending on dating and being with people. One idea she said that she wanted to do was to only have one day a week for another person, but that the rest of the time would be her own, but I don’t know if that is still true.

She was going to take her retreat to think about things and come back to an idea of whether she still wanted “us” to work out, like she did for at least some part of december, but I think that’s gotten all bent out of shape. She doesn’t think she can be my anything, and she at least said to me that she didn’t think she could be anyone elses anything either. The idea of us dating occasionally appears to be a dead issue, and I am in denial about whether she’s stopped missing me or not.

She basically took the break over holiday as a time when she could be completely free to go out every night and hang out, since she didn’t really have a place that’s what she was doing anyway. So, she’s been intentionally wild.

When we last spoke, on thursday of last week, she said that she still loved me, but she thought that our relationship had run its course. That she had been thinking the night before that dating would be like trying to put bandaids on something that was fundimentally flawed. That she felt drained when we were together, and she dreaded the approach of that time when she knew it was going to happen.

One of her family said they didn’t think she knows what she wants. What she wants is to be happy and she’s trying her best to be happy. I tried to be that for her, but it got all messed up. I wish with every bit of myself that she and I could be happy together, but it seems that I will have to settle for each of us finding happiness for ourselves.

She’s a beautiful, loving, vibrant person. She may make mistakes but she’s doing her best to make the best decisions she can. I have no doubt in my mind that she will manage to find that happiness eventually.

Clearly, I wish we could continue making those mistakes together and find that eventual happiness with each other, but I have yet to really accept where I am.

I had this idea of contacting the man she was with previous to me, but I’m too confused on whether that’s even remotely a good idea. I thought that maybe he and I would be able to share stories and maybe it would help us analyse what happened, to compare insider notes and maybe come to a better understanding of how much of what was not necessarily our faults. It’s probably a bad idea.

M. said she’s moved in to her new place with the cats, which I didn’t know. That’s how far out of the loop I am now, I guess. I want to call her and invite her to go x-country skiing, but that’s probably futile since she probably wouldn’t want to go and she’s probably got plans already for the whole weekend even if she did.

Hey, it’s snowing!

I think I figured some things out

I think I figured some things out.

When we got together A was dealing with a failed marriage where she felt among other things abandoned. I was shut down after a relationship where I’d forced a very nice person that cared deeply for me to leave because I wasn’t able to see us together and couldn’t continue.

I worked very hard to create a loving safe place where I was available for A since in her previous relationship she never had someone with her, invested in her life. I tried to create ways for her to be part of everything that I did as well as trying hard to be there for all of her activities. It wasn’t really hard work for me, since I loved to be with her and excepting that some of the activities were not my first choice everything we did together was good.

She wanted someone that was going to be as active as her desired level of activity, which turned out to be almost frenetic. I wanted someone that I loved to share everything with in my life. This worked out for a while because my desire to have someone in my life met her need to be with someone that loved her and spent time with her. It also worked because I had shut down and needed and wanted to break out of that by doing more things.

Only something happened along the way where she started to feel cheated by the fact that I didn’t always want to do active things, or would do them but be grumpy. And I’ve realized that I started to feel cheated when I found out that she didn’t always want me around or would not always be there for me as much as I was trying to be there for her. In a way we both created for the other the kind of space that we ourselves wanted and got surprised when the other didn’t quite want that.

I started to get grumpy more when she would want to do stuff other than be together, or when she would want to go visit for somewhere for a few minutes that would become a couple hours because I felt like she’d misled me about her need to be with me and all our plans together were just not her real agenda. She would get grumpy when I would go on an activity because I’d wanted to go, but then when I was actually there I would complain, finding something uncomfortable or annoying

Then, when I’d created a safe loving place where she could finally explore good sex, and grow as a person to the point where I got us started on yoga and helped her to get started back to college. She started to need the safe and always-there person less and started to need something else from me more. She was growing more confident and less in need of a safe haven to deal with her issues since she was getting that from her school environment.

So, when she wanted me to come along I wasn’t allowed to complain, but when she didn’t want me there I felt cheated, even though it’s reasonable that she would want time to do things. When I didn’t go along she felt like I was turning out to be a slug and wasn’t invested in us, but when I did go along she felt like I was doing it only for her and not because I wanted to be there, even though I really did want to be there and do things.

I think what she wanted from that point on was a fun-loving playmate in place of the safe haven which she was now getting elsewhere. However, I was still providing the safe, always there space for her, and then I got sidetracked by frustrations at work and the commute and then getting laidoff. I was feeling a bit helpless about all that other stuff and failed to realize how her needs for me had changed, and she felt unable, or didn’t know herself, to communicate to me how much those needs had changed.

As she started to need that less from me, I think I started to feel like I was failing and got grumpy at things where I felt like I was being cheated out of what I thought was my purpose and meaning in the relationship. When she started to want to go out to do things on her own or needed space, but at the same time would be trying desperately to make things work, I felt like she wanted me there when she wanted me, but that I wasn’t wanted or loved when she didn’t. It started to feel like being with her was obligatory unless forbidden.

I think that’s when the problems with sex started for me. I felt like I couldn’t make love with her when she didn’t want to do so, but that when she wanted to do so it was obligatory. So, while I was still very attracted to her and constantly had many fantasies about her, when she came on strong I felt like I was being required to switch on like the magic marshmallow. So I started to feel like sex was forbidden unless mandatory, and so I started to feel very uncomfortable when she wanted me. Further, since we worked so hard to create pleasure, things for me started to feel mechanical when they did happen. That caused her a great deal of pain because she felt like she wasn’t loved or sexy to me because I was unable to be comfortable, and the more she tried to make it happen the more I would be uncomfortable, feeling like I was being used.

We took time out each month to talk about what was bothering us about things, and to do a renewal of our desire to be with eachother. However, over the last few weeks I feel like the A that I knew has turned into an onion, with each layer covering another fresh layer of anger at me for things that we didn’t really talk about.

I feel like she thinks I have only one layer, and that she’s missed that there’s a fun-loving playmate in me along with the caring, loving provider. I just got stuck and couldn’t figure out how to get myself to shift gears. I mean, I’m a grumpy person and I won’t deny that, but I’m also loving, funny, warm, caring, and I actually do enjoy a lot of activities.

On the other hand, I definitely have issues to deal with. My grumpy nature has probably something to do with learned frustration and learned helplessness. I’m prone to depression and mood swings, and I clearly have some messed up problems with how I feel about my ability to make love and be loved. She really helped me with a space where I could explore a bunch of those feelings. Of course, the catch was that when she started to withdraw that space, I felt further abandoned too.

I’m not sure that being forced out of the relationship was the only way, but I think it really did give me a chance to shock myself back to myself and maybe work on a bunch of things. I certainly feel like I’ve been able to start looking for those things that give me joy, like doing this play and being on stage again. I’ve also been able to find those kinds of activities that I myself enjoy, like my newly discovered activity of snowshoe hiking, that are maybe not things that she would like.

I know she is so filled with anger with me and so feels like what we had is over. That may be true, even though I wish it weren’t, but I think she’s gotten me confused with someone that only has one layer of self, and is missing that there’s a lot more to me than she realizes. I’m grumpy and get depressed, but I’m working on that with myself now. I know it won’t go away, but I can try to consume that part of me and become stronger from it. I’ve been doing pretty good so far, I think. I’d lost track of myself before we met, but she helped me get where I am now and I seem to be on a good path, even if it is without her.

I was going through the pictures we’d collected and was remembering all the fun and good times. I know she feels like those were just occasional flowers growing on a pile of unhappy dirt, but I don’t think so. I think that we had difficult things to deal with while in the relationship, and we did the best we could. We dealt with a lot of things while we were together and helped eachother to grow a lot. We were stronger together than we would have been apart, and we helped eachother do things that neither of us would have done alone. I think we had problems, but that what we had together was wonderful and good for us both.

We went through so much together in a year and a half. It seemed to last forever and fly by at the same time.

Yesterday I tried to go to the one act festival, but arrived right in time for lunch break. The next one act was schedule too late for me to see all of it, so I didn’t get to watch any of them.

I met Joey & Linda and we all went to a screening of a great little homegrown movie called “Immigrant Garden” which was from a play written by Caroline Wood. Caroline has written several plays that have been put on locally, and quite a few of them have had Joey in them. In the movie was really only one actor I recognized. That was Kurt Harris who was in Romeo & Juliet and Moonchildren in which I was also.

This morning I realized, I think, why I keep waking up at 3am in the morning. There’s a train that goes through woodland at that time and somehow the sound of the whistle was echoing all the way up here loud enough that I could hear it clearly.

The air in that room is really dry. I’ve been waking with my mouth completely parched, and I think it’s causing my sinuses to dry out too. I’m not sure what to do about that excepting perhaps to buy a little humidifier and run it at night.

I left around 7:30am to meet with Joey & Linda this morning. We left from their house to go pick up Christina and Josh. Christina was in Romeo & Juliet with Joey, Linda & I also. She was Linda’s bride’s maid when I was Joey’s best man at their wedding.

The five of us, with me driving us all in the jeep, tooled up towards Mt. Hood and went to Mirror Lake on snowshoes. Man, that was some good fun. I could have kept going. In fact, it was funny because I was running around in circles once we got up there, zigzagging around, as the rest followed like ducklings. There were actually quite a few people up there. I also tried snowboarding for the first time. Well, I did manage to get down the hill we were trying it on without falling much, but I also couldn’t quite stand up all the way without starting to tip over, so I kind of crouched the whole way as I came down. It was okay, but I don’t think I got a very good idea of what it would be like really. I’ll have to try it again sometime somewhere meant for that purpose that’s smoothed out by other people having gone down the slope.

Anyhow, it was beautiful up there. The ice and snow on the trees was especially nice. At one point I noticed that the pattern in the snow on the frozen lake was the same pattern as the clouds in the sky. There was also a really stunning view of Mt Hood. I got a bunch of nifty pictures.

I had a load of fun. It was the first time I’d been on a snowboard and the first time I’d ever hiked with snowshoes. I could really get into that kind of hiking. It was wonderfully beautiful and I was surprised at how in shape I felt. I was sweating quite a bit, and I was using some bamboo poles that I’d borrowed from Jerry which worked my shoulders and arms, but it felt really good.

When I got home I did the morning yoga routine. I think I needed that to wind down and stretch out the legs. I can feel in my legs, shoulders and arms that I did get a workout, but it’s a really good feeling.

Next weekend, Linda, Christina, perhaps Josh and I are all going to do some crosscountry skiing. That will be the first time I’ve done that ever, so that will be pretty cool. Joey can’t go because he’ll be at work. Anyhow, sounds like Christina is interested in the Seattle-to-Portland bike ride too, so I won’t be alone in beginning to train for it from scratch. We made a pact to be pathetically slow together on the ride.

It just occurred to me that I have not gotten bent out of shape or overly stressed about the fact that I lost that ring, even though it’s something that was absolutely unique in the world. I haven’t taken it as a sign of anything, nor have I been grumpy or angry about having lost it.

I spent some time hanging out with Joey this afternoon. On the way back, along the freeway, there was a pretty big hawk perched along a fence. It was a pretty bird to see.

Last night, before rehearsal, since I was a little early but didn’t have time enough to make it all the way back home before, I decided that I needed to go on a walk. However, I went in to the theatre to see if anyone there wanted to go with me. One of the guys of the two new Battle Ground people went with me. Turns out that he lives north of Hazen chapel, and when I was going to school there I lived south of the same place, a few football fields away. Further, when I started to think about it, I wondered if he was in school at Yacolt when I was in high school. Anyhow, I used to ride the bus home from the high school, but stay on the bus through the entire matching elementary route and sleep. When I was doing plays I didn’t get much sleep at night, so I caught some on the bus, at least partially because the low rumble of the engine was soothing to me. So, turns out that this guy in the cast remembers a high school kid that used to sleep on the bus when he rode the bus during 1st grade.

Tonight, I was again complemented by several people for the work I was doing. The other night, one person was evaluating something I had done and said that she thought I had an easy time of turning off the brain and just doing the work, which surprised me. Turning off the brain had always been the thing that I had the most trouble doing before.

I was sparked by something Mike Cheney had said about us two dressing up as hunters. I ended up with this idea for the prologue, which I don’t know if will be used. Anyhow, I wrote it up and got to share it with Don today. Mike seemed to like it, and I got some chuckles out of Don. Well, even if it doesn’t get used it was still worth it to have done.

I also talked to Don about the process for petitioning for the degree from Longview. I’m going to need some transcripts from Seattle Central, and then have a person in admissions evaluate the work I’d done and go from there. Anyhow, turns out he’s on the committee that makes those decisions still, once the admissions people give it a go ahead.

fantasy

Holy hell. I don’t know where to begin.

In some kind of poetic justice I managed to lose one of the rings I was wearing today. Of the two, I lost the one my grandfather had made, but still have the one that is the half of the pair A. and I bought together.

Of course, after meeting with her this morning I’m not sure if I should just put that ring in storage with the altar, the henna, the toothbrush she has here and everything else from our life together.

She remembers the good times as being the exception to the bad times. I see the bad times as being the surface, transitory storm over the wonderful thing we shared together.

She says she still loves me, but that continuing on like we are dating would just be like putting bandaids on something that is fundimentally flawed. I feel like the flaws are imperfections that merely are, admittedly big, obstacles to be dealt with in order to get back to the happy parts.

She doesn’t want me to wait for her to get back to the point where she wants to be with me, which is a point where she feels she may never reach again. I feel like by just dating, we’d be able to forget all the stupid day to day stuff that was causing us to have problems, and stick to the fun parts while finding ourselves by ourselves.

I’m living in this fantasy world where I imagine that she’ll have called while I was out, or that by some miracle she will have decided to come visit and have driven down so that she’d be here when I got home from rehearsals. All the while, she’s going on with her life, dreading the approach of time together because she’s feeling guilty for hurting me, but also feels completely drained when we’re together.

I’m barely able to sleep a full night, but she’s sleeping soundly.

I know we had problems, and I know that I messed up big time. I really wanted it to be enough that I love her. I know I was distant and difficult. She said that it might have helped if I had changed six months earlier, but I didn’t. Why can’t my mistakes be forgiven?

She’s been here before, of course, in her previous relationship. She knows that it doesn’t necessarily work out, because it didn’t, even though she thought he would be the one she would be with forever. She also knows that getting back together after things get better doesn’t mean it will work, or even that it will stay good for long, because it didn’t for her.

I had the idea of forever in my head sometimes, but I’ve never been able to say to myself that I really thought I’d found the person I wished to share the rest of my life with before. I think I’ve hurt several people by not being able to come to an understanding of how I should feel about love or forever. I really thought that I have found both this time, and there’s still part of me that still thinks that even the sliver of a chance that I have left to me is enough.

She still wants to keep in touch, to see me in the play and to maybe do things like go snowshoe, etc … but that it’s got to be as friends.

She talked about e-mail and about making sure I had her new phone number, but providing me with the means to contact her is to opposite of the problem: she’s the one that is determining the boundaries, so I almost have to wait for her. It seems that any time I try to contact her or spend time with her, it’s clingy to have done it or it’s me trying to be romantic again. But any fun thing would be romantic, so is the only thing left to converse stoicly?

Is this, as her brother said, a “tide” of her that must be weathered, if any man can?

Is this pattern of her deciding that I must be farther away just before each time we meet something that will continue? Did she intend to push me this far away from the beginning and was just trying to soften the blow by making it a slow progression?

The biggest struggle for me is to not fall into depression, shutting down like I did before. I’m probably going to be a burden to all my friends for a while, and I feel horribly guilty for that. I don’t know if it’s good or bad that some of my friends are her brother and uncle, but it’s at least something that will complicate things.

Another struggle will be in finding a way to not become embroiled in a fantasy world, having conversations with an imaginary version of her or finding myself living for those imaginary miracles of her romantic return to me, like some sappy movie that would no doubt bring me to tears. I’ve already caught myself doing both of these things recently.

I suppose this relates to the thing about not shutting down, but I have to keep on going, work on healing myself, even though my heart feels like it has been ripped out of my chest by cold steel claws.

I already had a seriously difficult time staying focused at rehearsal tonight. I came close to something like a panic attack a couple of times.

As the night wore on, it got harder. It seems like each day gets harder than the previous one.

I’m both looking forward to and dreading seeing A tomorrow. I hope it goes well. I love her so much but I know she needs space from me. I keep thinking that I should offer to stay away for the next couple of months, but I’m so full of fear.

All I can do is to do my best, be as much myself as I can, and keep believing that it will work out the way it should. All of which is easier said than done … but it’s the plan and I’m sticking to it.

Made stirfry, peanut sauce and sandwich mix today. The sandwich mix turned out much better this time, I think.

I took some of the stirfry and peanut sauce for dinner, which I ate damned quickly during a 10 minute break. Everyone was fawning over the smell, and one member of the cast tried some of it and said it was really good.

Found out today which parts I play. I swap the two old men parts with Michael Cheney. It’s so stupid that this depresses me. I’m having so much fun, and such a silly thing like not being in a lead role sets me to grumbling and getting down on myself.

If it’s what I think is going to happen, it’s going to be a bit like “Jack’s House” and even when I’m not doing a role I may be on stage anyway, but even if that’s not the case it just means that for the people that auditioned, that’s the role that I fit in.

It’s so dumb that I’m all bent out of shape because I wanted a big role to show off to all my friends. I should know better than that. First off, it’s been 12 years and I did get cast with a part which is more than I have had in a long time. Also, I played tiny roles in Romeo & Juliet but had people really complimenting my work and noticing my work on stage, so I know first hand that I can still make an impression. Finally, it’s not about impressing people, although I’m still finding myself stuck on other people’s approval it seems, it’s about doing good work that I can be proud of for myself.

It’s also about me finding myself again, and this whole thing where I’m not happy with the role is part of the problem. I need to find the joy in doing it, like I was doing before the cast list was posted. I’ve been full of joy during rehearsals, why stop that now?

I had two meals today. That’s the first day I’ve managed to eat more than one meal. I’ve got to keep healthy, and this whole not eating, not sleeping thing is not good.

I was in line behind someone at the store earlier today that didn’t have a silly safeway club card. The cashier asked if I had one he could use the number from, and I did since I’d actually brought the card in. Not only did I save him $6 but he also got my extra 5% off. He didn’t seem to speak very good english, but he thanked me sincerely. I was glad I could help, and from the way he reacted, I think he was pretty happy to save that much on a single bag of stuff.

Current Music: Primus – Southbound Pachyderm

Last night, I was finally able to sleep without the radio. I did great until around 3am when I woke up for some reason and couldn’t get back to sleep easily. I’ve been to do my old techniques of relaxing and meditation to clear the thoughts from my mind long enough to get back to sleep, but it’s so hard to let go of some of those images and thoughts.

However, this morning the view from my window was wonderful. The clouds had filled to valley to the point that the peaks of the hills across the valley looked like islands floating on an ocean. As I did my yoga, the clouds creeped up the hill and now the house is cloaked in clouds.

Today, I’m going to go to the store to get stuff to make more sandwich mix and also stirfry. I need to make something that I can take with me to rehearsals. I’ve got to start eating more or I’m going to get sick, or worse my body will think I’m trying to do something stupid like go on a starvation diet. I need to make sure that I have food to use since I’m doing so much activity.

When I went to Nature’s, I got a some green tea extract, a bottle of my old multi-vitamins, and a bottle of flax seed oil. I’ve been taking the green tea and multi-vitamins each day because I realize I’ve not been doing good at keeping my body nourished. I’ve been trying to use the flax seed oil instead of butter on bread, but I was twarted by the fact that Toby ate all my good bread the other day when he was home from school. I do have some in the freezer, but I haven’t taken it out yet. Anyhow, it was a half-loaf of my good bread that was left and it went away in one day. I’ll just chalk it up as a sacrifice to the burgeoning teen spirit.

Rehearsal tonight was good. I got compliments from a couple of people on some of the work I did. I almost got Don to tell me to pull back during one of the exercises, but it didn’t happen yet. It’s cool that I got so close already. It’s going to happen, it’s only a matter of time and effort.

Doing yoga in the mornings and warmups before rehersals is a lot of work. I’m sore all over. It feels great.

Current Music: Orgy – Blue Monday

Yesterday, for some reason, dread started to creep in

Yesterday, for some reason, dread started to creep in. Last night was not a good night. I got very little sleep, tossing and turning, between awful unfitful dreams. There’s this dark cloud that keeps rolling over me where I realize that I no longer have any right to believe that I am the only one the woman I love will be with and that at the most fundimental I may never be with her again as a lover either. It’s possible that I will never be with her intimately again.

Last night started with dreams of making love to her again, but then the dreams started to no longer involve me in them at all. For the whole night, I was trapped watching as the woman I love, loved another.

Surrounding this were flashes of dream conversations with her family where they would slip and talk about her new relationships in front of me.

I woke so many times last night drenched in sweat, feeling like my stomach was trying to eat itself out of my body and my chest constricted and tight with dread.

Among the many promises that we made each other, and didn’t manage to keep, was that I would not end up finding out that she had been having a relationship behind my back, like how we got together. I suppose there’s a certain justice to the fact that I was at times surounded by a circle of her friends that all knew she was already seeing someone else, when I did not. I’m sure that there were some that were wishing I would just go away, while pretending to involve me. I should be honest and realize that there’s some of the same in how she felt about me at the time, and maybe still does.

We promised a lot of things that we didn’t manage to live up to. We promised to do yoga every morning. We promised to never go to bed mad at each other. We promised to give ourselves at least two months before ending the relationship. We promised to make sure that we knew why the relationship was ending by being honest with each other and talking through our problems each month.

We stopped doing yoga after our schedules changed. I’m sure there were plenty of times when we both were angry when we went to bed. The decision to end things was quick and non-negotiable. She wasn’t able to feel like she could address a lot of the anger she had with me because she was uncomfortable even bringing up little things due to my temper.

But it can’t be just about goals and criteria, although I think there’s a place for those. Maybe she doesn’t remember, or maybe I misremember, but there were so many times that I was happy. I was happy when we cuddled. I was happy when we read harry potter to each other. I was happy when we made good food. I was happy when she smiled. I was happy making love to her. I was happy when we walked. I was happy when we held hands. I was happy when we were silly.

For all those things, I realize there were also times when I wasn’t happy. I wasn’t happy when sex felt like I was just another machine trying to give her pleasure instead of us making love to each other. I wasn’t happy when we walked when it was uncomfortably hot out. I was unhappy when we couldn’t think of anything to do. I was unhappy when I felt like I was forced into the back room, isolated when I wanted to do computer stuff. I was unhappy when we would make plans to do 20 somethings and only get to a couple of them because by not getting to the things she wanted to do, I felt like I had failed her, and having so many meant that that was inevitable. I was unhappy when we’d talked about doing something and then she would change her mind and go hang out at her father’s for a few hour-minutes instead.

I do know that without a job after getting laid off, and without any outside interests, I relied on her far too much. I wanted to be with her all the time, and since there was nothing else on my plate, that’s what I worked toward. This certainly would have caused her to feel a lot of pressure from which she would naturally want to escape.

I do know that I relied on her to take care of bills from our joint account and things, and that certainly helped her feel like she was having to take care of me. This was something that would have easily made her feel like she was back in a mothering role, taking care of me.

But at the same time, I did a lot to take care of her. I tried to be there for her. I created a safe, patient, gentle place for her to explore her own pleasure. I moved to a place where she was comfortable, but I knew only her friends and family. I originally agreed to get a pet cat because I knew how much she missed the cats she had from her previous relationship. I tried to suggest and provide her with the kind of space she needed to be herself, and a place where she could grow. I suggested that we start yoga, and got the DVDs so that we could do it. When she suggested she really wanted to go back to school, I immediately started helping her to get materials for schools. I helped her to start being comfortable with being artistic, drawing and sculpting and making things.

I know I made mistakes. We both did, but I also know that we both did a lot of things right, and that there was a lot of love that went into our shared space together.

I’ve started to do the morning yoga and a series of abs stuff right following it. Adding those two together is making me sweat, so that’s a good thing. I had this idea that I’d rip the tracks from the CD and put them onto my mp3 player so I could take them with me and stuff.

Tomorrow will be one week. One week that has past. I feel like each minute has been an hour, each day over a month long.

On the other hand, it’s been 1 week that I’ve been a vegetarian so far. It’s been a week in which I’ve re-started my morning yoga, re-connected with old friends, auditioned and been cast in a play and started to get back in touch with parts of myself that I’d almost forgotten about.

First rehearsal went pretty good. Doing warm-ups again was something, something I think I really missed. It was good to do them and really push myself and get sweaty.

Don read something from a seminar that Peter Brook did somewhere. One fo the quotes was about how theatre, when it is good, is life without the boring bits. I wonder how much of my dissatisfaction with myself has been that I’ve lacked a project that was hyper-real like that. I know there’s more to it, but it seems like there’s at least a part of me that’s always wanted to find that kind of intensity. So, there’s got to have been part of me that tried to create that kind of project out of my life with what I had available.

Perhaps the thing that’s been missing has been a project to which I could apply my focus in an instense way and be healthy doing it. Clearly, there’s not really a place for that in some activities, or it burns up too fast. I’ve had theatre, debate, my poetry … all in the past.

On the drive home, in the dark, I saw a little rabbit running along side the road in the edge of my headlights. It reminded me of how Mayday runs.

At Joey’s house the other day, his cantancerous cat, Pan, perched on my chest as I was leaning back on the couch. He nuzzled up to my ear and kept me company. That was nice of him to do. He didn’t use to act like that around me, but my manner with him must have changed or he might maybe recognize that I was more of a loving cat owner that I used to be before. Anyhow, it’s easy to read more into it, but it was nice to have a cat perch on me and keep me company.

I’m still all sweaty from rehearsal. It’s so much nicer than being all smokey and sweaty from some icky bar. It feels like I’ve been swimming in liquid joy.

The last several mornings

The last several mornings I’ve awoken from my night’s sleep while in the middle of dreams where I’m passionately making love to A. but as soon as I am awake and realize I’m alone the passion and feeling of intense horniness quickly fades and I feel hollow inside.

Talked to A on the phone today. Several things have been zinging through my head since.

First, she mentioned that she didn’t think that Gemini traits matched me very well. She specifically mentioned one trait as being not me, in her experience. I always thought that the Gemini matched me really well, surprisingly so. It seems like there’s a whole side of me that she hasn’t gotten to see much. She’s seen the gregarious and wild me occasionally, but not really very often.

She also mentioned that some people had told her that it was interesting to see what she was like without someone clinging to them. Of course, that probably has a lot to do with the way things have been in the last month, but I can’t help but feel like that’s unfair. I wonder if that was said by someone that had seen us much before we were having trouble, I was trying so hard and she was pushing back for space so hard. I mean there’s specific reasons why the last month or so I’ve been nervous as hell not the least of which is that things were going badly, but I was also trying to keep working on the relationship and show her that affection and attraction like she wanted me to show more often. I’m sure that I was also reacting poorly to her pushing me away, and I could probably tell that something was going on, like all the anger that she was storing up and not able to work through with me about things because of how she felt like her head would be bitten off by me on the little things I was grumpy about, so how could she feel like she could deal with the big stuff?

I suppose in a way it’s moot, but I’m not completely convinced that the closeness was bad in itself. I mean, being snuggly and cuddly in public isn’t bad when things are going well. Also, she was out a lot with all the same people without me at all, so they must have seen her without me there too anyway. We’d be sitting there watching M & J be all loving in public, but it wasn’t okay for us to do the same thing because of where things were with us. I’m not saying that there wasn’t something messed up, but I want to believe that there would still be a place for public affection and that it’s not all bad to want to be close and loverly in public. I recognize that it shouldn’t be all the time but I think it’s unfortunate when couples lose that giddy cute and active lover stuff.

So another thought while talking to A today, I had this realization that maybe I’m constitutionally built to need stuff like theatre in my life. Maybe I need to have something like rehearsals or other projects to keep me going. I mean, I had stuff like the BBS that I ran where I would have a poetry room where I would force myself to write something new each time I got to it, but I haven’t given myself that kind of structured project in a long time. Doing this play may be part of exactly what I’ve been missing for myself, to keep myself alive inside.

I think both she and I entered our relationship without having a firm grasp on who we were. We were both out of touch with who we were individually. I think that to some extent we tried to create a space for the other person to be safe. She did, definitely, help me feel okay to explore lots of things about myself like my emotions and my spirituality. I think I worked hard to be there for her and to create a place where she could explore herself and go through some of her emotional issues. So, perhaps, we both invested ourselves in making a place for the other person and being invested in the relationship for the other.

I think if we can both come to a relationship with with a firm grasp on ourselves, then there might be something even more magical between us than before. If we love each other as much as I think we do now, I imagine it would be something even more amazing if we were able to bring our whole selves to the relationship.

She’s gotten to know part of who I am, but I think I have at least a whole other part of me that she hasn’t gotten to experience yet. I think if I can keep hold of the part of me that I’ve misplaced, and am getting in touch with right now, and bring that with me …

I would love to have a relationship where we are both as completely ourselves as possible, and build a relationship from there where we are in it with each other instead of for the other.

I realize I was working from the beginning to create a safe place for her to find herself, and to grow. I think I got scope locked on that idea to the point that I forgot to give myself space enough to find myself again. I spent a great deal of effort in creating the safe and loving and gentle place for her that I thought she needed and wanted.

Sure, there were lots of times that I wanted to visit Joey when we were down here, but I didn’t because I felt she would rather not. Sure, there were lots of times that I didn’t go do things, like movies or whatever, because I thought I should be there for her and wanted to make sure I was with her. Sure, I’d wanted to go for a walk or do yoga when she didn’t sometimes, but didn’t because I wanted to do it with her more than I wanted to do it. However, through all of that I think I still wasn’t able to get myself motivated for myself. I was quite often bored, like part of me was still home alone in the old basement apartment biding my time. That’s just down right unhealthy, and I think I realized it, but didn’t want to risk losing my relationship by not maintaining that safe, gentle and loving space.

I don’t mean that to say that anyone but myself created that situation for myself, and I don’t regret one bit of it. However, what would be really great is to be able to go the next step and find a balance for that energy and focus so that I was also creating my own personal safe and loving place for myself which I could share with her too.

I also don’t mean that we wouldn’t still have safety and love to give each other. I mean that neither of us would feel like that was our purpose in the relationship for the other. I mean rather that it would be something that would perhaps grow naturally out of us both being together with the beautiful, wonderful person that we loved.

I’ve been moaning about not having anything left to say as an excuse for not writing, but maybe it has more to do with not letting myself have the kind of project space I needed to keep that part of me active.

I hope with all my heart that I’ll have a chance to keep learning to know A and that she will get to keep meeting more of who I am. In a funny way, this reminds me of what people told her about me having many layers. I think there’s more layers to me than she has had a chance to become familiar with, and maybe some of those are parts of me that I’ve been ignoring for so long. So, if she was able to fall in love with just that part of me that she’s met so far then being more fully myself could only be more interesting and exciting.

So, I kinda feel like it’s a paraphrase of a song and I’d look in those beautiful brown eyes and say “you ain’t seen nothing yet.”

Joey, Linda and I are planning to go snowshoe/snowboarding next weekend. They also mentioned that they are planning on doing the Seattle-to-Portland bike ride in June or whatever. That’s a pretty big goal, but working toward something specific like that might be a perfect chance for me to have a focus toward getting in shape.

I was reading through a vegetarian cookbook at Joey and Linda’s and every other page was a recipe that I wanted to cook with A. I imagined being in a kitchen making our own vegetable broth for soups, and tons of other things again. I could see us with a kitchen where we canned our own broth and other ingredients and things.

I picked up a yoga mat and strap. It also came with the CD of the morning and evening workouts so I don’t have to have the playstation hooked up to remember the whole program. I want to keep doing yoga in the mornings like I’ve been doing. I also think I’m going to try to be at rehearsals early to do a physical warm up, for which the mat will be useful.

Well, monday is my first rehearsal in something like 12 years and it’s only a few hours away now!

I hung out friday with Joey. It was pretty good. I think we’re going to bike a bit around, so I got my bike out of storage today.

It’s sad to hear that his mom has passed away due to lung cancer. Both my paternal grandfather and my paternal grandmother’s father passed away due to smoking related problems. Makes me nervous about being in rooms filled with smoke. As I type this, my lungs are hurting even.

I was finally able to eat a full meal after tryouts on friday. Don and Michael Cheney and I went to a restaurant after and chatted about things theatre related. I had a gardenburger.

At lunch with Joey, I told a waitperson for the first time that I was vegetarian. I’ve been doing okay, but I’m not yet eating very well either way. I made the veggie sandwich things for everyone tonight. The boys basically didn’t touch them. Mom ate two. Jerry cleaned his plate but seemed miffed that there wasn’t a dead animal on the table. Much like the salads, I didn’t manage to make them as good as before.

I got up this morning and made a run to Powell’s to try to find a copy of the out of print Rowse modernized versions of “Two Gentlemen of Verona” but couldn’t find any.

After that, I decided to head up to U.P. to check on my PO Box and get my bike out of storage and drop off some stuff. Actually, the first thing I did was to head into Tacoma to try to find a copy of the Rowse text at the bookstore near the Dome, but they didn’t have any either. I thought about heading down to M’s to visit, but started to feel very anxious that I might see A. there, or at least when she didn’t want me to be there, so I didn’t go. Probably better to make sure I call ahead to M’s for a while.

I cried in the car most of the way back down here to my mom’s.

Turns out that A. called shortly after I left, but didn’t leave a message, or my brother didn’t remember the message. I tried to call back to her new number, but there was no answer or answering machine. I found out by calling to leave a message at her pop’s that she hasn’t been able to move in yet. Shit, that sucks. I guess she was heading off to her girlfriend C’s and didn’t know if she’d be back until tomorrow, so I figured that might really mean she was going to go play, so I didn’t try to track her down.

It’s so hard to know what to do.

I picked up some of my altar stuff form the storage place too. I’ve started to try to make the bedroom here a little more friendly. I want to ask about getting a separate phone line put in so that I can check my e-mail and stuff, and maybe even get calls after 9pm without waking everyone up. I’d also like to have a little desk so I can hook up my computer and work on getting A’s computer back up and running. A bookshelf for my books that I’ve got would be nice too, although I haven’t been able to read much since I got here.

I got more than a couple hours of sleep finally last night, instead of struggling to be okay with it.

I’m trying so hard to not slip into despair. This is actually going pretty good, considering how it could be, and all I can do is try to have fun and not focus on the stuff that’s all messed up. I have an appointment with an endocrinologist later in the month to talk about the possibility that I’ve got clinical depression or something out of balance.

I need to get some rehearsal/warm-up clothes tomorrow. It’s been a long time since I’ve needed that, but at least we aren’t going to be required to wear tights like we used to be for class and for a play or two like “Wayward Saints” or “Jack’s House” where it was non-stop.

I also miss being able to listen to streaming music. I’ve been having to leave the radio on all night, but I wish I could listen to CDs during the day or as I’m going to bed. I could hook up the computer, but I don’t want to listen to the damned fan all night. A little cd clock-radio thing would be nice.

When I’ve been in the car I’ve been hearing songs on the radio and I’ve been furiously scribbling song names and artists on a bit of paper as I wiggle down the road trying to write. I keep thinking about making a playlist of songs about how I feel or trying to make some kind of playlist based on a kind of chronology of my relationship with A. ending with some song like “I’ve got high hopes” or something and including “Here comes the sun,” “Hello, I love you,” “True Companion,” and a bunch of songs that I’ve associated with the relationship in some way or another.

The only place I can listen to CDs on this floor is at the computer. There’s a CD player in the living room, but I would really like to listen in private sometimes. My stereo is far too big and it doesn’t have a way to plug earphones into it so that I can listen loudly at night.

I talked to Joey and asked how long it was that he and Linda were apart when she went off to college and he said it was 4 years before they got back together. Everyone at auditions was mystified at how old I was, since I look so much younger. How old is too old? Is there a time when it is too late?

All I can really do is try to have fun, and let come what may. It is so very hard, but I know it’s what I have to do to cope. What will happen, I cannot control. I’ll go crazy if I try.

I have some great ideas for the play, mostly for a particular part in the play. I hope I get to use them. I mentioned one of them to my mom, and she seems to not understand the same kind of humor.

I described what I did for my monologue an she didn’t seem to get that either. I didn’t have anything prepared, since I haven’t done anything in forever and only found out that day about the auditions, so I originally thought about doing some emotional transition through Elizabeth Kubler-Ross’s 5 stages of grief, but that’s not quite good for a comedy is it?

So, I went in and Don said he thought I probably didn’t have a monologue prepared “or did I?” so I went into this spiel about how [remove my coat] I’d wanted to do something appropriate [remove my scarf] for the play. Then, I was talking to one of the other guys that wanted [remove my pullover sweater] to do Valentine and he’d mentioned how disappointed he was that Don had decided to instead to [drop my pants] The Full Monty! At this point, I had Don laughing outloud. Then, I did this part where I was embarassed about the whole confusion, and tried to explain it away by talking about Olivier’s quote about how “If it doesn’t make you nervous, it’s not worth doing anymore” and started to giggle. Then, I kept laughing, harder and harder, until I heard some [imaginary] noise backstage and slammed to the floor and did a bit about being scared.

Anyhow, so, I bounced around the stage and whatnot. Not a real audition piece, but it worked out okay. It was kind fun. It makes me wonder what I could do if I really set my mind to prepare something. I remember the auditions for Moonchildren. I did a monologue about a jilted lover that replaces his former lover’s K-Y with Tiger Balm that had Don and the stage manager Aaron laughing like monkeys.

I also had fun during the second night of auditions. I got to read some of the Duke’s lines and I’d managed to start feeling much better about being on stage. I was able to center my voice more, which I think made it sound much better. I was also able to read for Lance again, which was really cool because I took in a stuffed gorilla as Lance’s dog Crab which I’d wanted to do for the previous night but didn’t manage to do. Luckily the girl that had the gorilla the first night (perhaps it’s her safety blanket?) was there with it again the next night.

I’d thought about heading out to get a stuffed animal, a retractable leash, a crutch for the staff and some dr seuss hat, but didn’t end up having time to do that since I had to head out right after getting back from hanging out with Joey. Anyhow, it worked out well enough. Don commented on my way out to the other people there that I knew he liked that sort of thing, since the guy I was reading with clearly thought I was nuts.

I had a dream that I was in rehearsal and Don asked me to actually pull back on what I was doing. In the dream, I did a double take and then did a victory dance. I think that’s a good goal for this production. I’m going to get him to tell me to pull back, by Jove!

I’m going to keep trying to come up with ideas and things. I think that’s what I should do anyway, but it will be like a personal kind of milestone to get to that point in a rehearsal. I remember so many times during Wayward Saints that I wanted to do something differently but I was too unsure to speak up, especially about the speech with Scapino where the direction was that I would have believed the stuff about being the greatest actor, but that was all wrong. The whole point was that I specifically didn’t believe it, and when I finally started to do that on stage I noticed the audience started to get it too because they were nodding in agreement.

Joey said a couple things that kinda surprised me. Apparently, Wayward Saints is a lot of people’s favourite show that have seen a bunch. I know I struggled through it a lot, but it was good. I know it could have been better, but clearly I’ve been changed by it since I still identify with the character a lot, even if I identify a bit with a slightly modified arlecchino. He also mentioned that McClelland came to see it twice, which apparently he never does. That’s pretty cool when the reviewer voluntarily goes again, and does it outside of normal behaviour.

At any rate, this should be a fun experience to do this play! I sure needed something like this right now.

Auditions went well. I don’t have any idea if I got a part, but I’m pretty sure that I’ll not get Valentine. Valentine felt like such a perfect role for me right now since he’s in love, gets banished, accepts that he must give up his love, but in the end is united with his love.

There’s a clown role, Lance, which I might get, and seems like fun. I can think of several things I would do with it given the chance that would be pretty funny.

During the readings I noticed the anti-semitism in the play more than I’d ever noticed before in other plays. I bet it was there the whole time and I just skipped over it. I think that I would want to ask to avoid some of the lines where that’s what’s written if I was involved.

Anyhow, of course, the whole way home, I’m wishing that I could talk about it with A.

I’m still having trouble eating. I tried to eat before going, but could only manage one slice of toast. When I got back, I had just as much trouble. I had some of the chocolate soy milk, some juice and as much soup as I could stand, which wasn’t much.

My mother is seeing her doctor tomorrow and she’s going to see if I can get in as a new patient. Maybe there’s something to the whole seratonin thing. At least it isn’t prozac or lithium, but I’m still weary. A. made me promise to be sure, but there’s really no tests they can do. Essentially, the test is that it works or it doesn’t.

Maybe if I can get over the first bit, the depression, then I can work on all the rest.

I really need to talk with my father about what happened with his girlfriend, T. I have these memories which I think have been a big part of the problems that I’ve had with sex: my feelings of inadequacy and trouble joining sex with love properly.

I have these memories of a conversation with T when we were alone. I told her that I loved her, and she was taken aback by this. I suppose I was around 9 or 10 perhaps, and she was probably 18 or 19. She protested that it would never work, since I wasn’t very old and my penis would be so small. I argued that I wasn’t that much younger and besides I could use my hands and things.

I remember having my hand down her pants and my mouth on her nipple through her shirt. I remember how hard it was to move my hand in her tight jeans. I remember feeling her get wet as I struggled to please her with my hand. I vaguely think that she reached down to play with my penis, but gave up trying. This went on for a little while, and then I remember my dad coming home, catching us, sort of.

She protested that nothing was happening, but he stated that he could see what was going on. She tried to mollify my dad, but he made her go.

I think that’s when my dad started to talk to me about how one shouldn’t have sex without being in love. I think it’s around this time that I started to try to masturbate myself. It’s from that point on that I started to play with myself almost every day. After I matured some more and started to be able to ejaculate, I was masturbating more than once a day.

I think there’s where a bunch of my feelings of inadequacy and fears of being too small started. I was told I was too small at a point when I had, essentially, my first sexual experience. Of course, I was 9 or 10 when that happened and I was a late bloomer, but I think that whole experience has stuck with me.

So, then the question becomes whether it’s a real memory or not. I suppose, in a way, it doesn’t matter if it was real or not, but I want to try to find out. It’s something about which I’ve never talked to my dad.

I’m sure that having a really smart kid can be challenge enough without having to deal with finding him and one’s own girlfriend in a sexual embrace.

I have a lot of anger over the way things went with my dad. It’s hard to trust happiness, which in a way is always just a promise, when that promise is always broken. There’s also some cynical distrust of happiness, that perhaps happy people are misguided or aren’t very deep thinkers.

I also know that I’ve a lot of problem with trying to accomplish things, since I learned that no matter how much I did, or how hard I tried, that what I did do would not be good enough. Rather, it was good enough, but “could have been better” if only I had tried harder. If nothing is great, no matter how much effort is applied, then why bother spending time doing anything that’s difficult or boring or likely to fail?

I guess that means that I learned helplessness when it came to success. No matter what I did, I wouldn’t be seen to have been successful by my mother.

Then there’s the fact that I grew up knowing that my mother hated my father, and that I was uncomfortably like my father to her in many ways. So, my father, the closest mirror of myself as an adult, was a failure and not loved, and constantly failed to follow through on happiness promised to me.

Well, I’m going to hang out with Joey tomorrow, and then go to the callbacks for the play tomorrow. I’ll now by the end of the day tomorrow whether I’ve got a part or two. I guess it’s going to be an ensemble like it was with Romeo & Juliet, which could be fun, and there may be some cross-gender roles too.

I didn’t hear from Michael tonight. Maybe I will tomorrow. I really hope we do something this weekend. I’m almost desperate to get more in shape at this point. I’m really hoping that if I get in shape, then I will not have so much trouble with being grumpy when doing stuff like hiking and things. I need to break that part of myself, or at least come to terms with it somehow. I need to not constantly find something to be grumpy about in everything that I do.

Maybe that’s the depression, but maybe it’s something deeper. It was definitely one of the symptoms, being irritable.

Current Music: John Lee Hooker & Jim Morrison – Roadhouse Blues

Looks like there’s a couple good leads for Openbook. The Allen people are seriously looking to help underwrite the 4 library pilot program that we’d arranged with the state. There’s noise from the Ford people, and NLM too again.

It was a good project and probably the best job I’d ever had, really. I sure complained about it a lot though. I’m such a whiner. I really really have to work on that part of my personality.

The silence is like thunder

Last night, I couldn’t figure out what I wanted for dinner until I realized … I wanted a salad. I went to the store and bought a bunch of fixings for a salad but it wasn’t nearly as good as the salads that A. makes.

While at the store I talked with one of my little brothers and he was asking questions about why there’s two political parties, and what I thought about stem-cell research, and questions about the ways computers might think like humans someday. That was pretty cool.

I started to talk to him about why meat isn’t necessarily as good for him as he might think. When he talked about doing experiments on animals to use animal brains to create machines that could sense things, I talked about why animal testing might not be such a good thing either.

Talking to my mother, she was concerned that I wouldn’t have my necessary stuff since I packed up in a hurry, but I was able to say that I had my important things with me. I started to tell her about the strategy of storing things I wasn’t using first which A. and I figured out when we moved to university place together.

Last night the silence here was like thunder. I started to have what I assume is a panic attack. I got pale, was sweating profusely, shaking and couldn’t concentrate. Every time I would turn a corner or come downstairs, I half expected to see A. there, smiling at me. I had to sleep with the radio on all night, and even then I was only able to sleep for a couple hours.

I woke up in the early morning before the sun was up. I did the upper back stuff that I was supposed to have been doing. I washed my face, brushed my teeth. Then, I did what I could remember from the morning yoga workout. I then moved the load of stuff I’d left in the garage to the place that it needed to be.

After a shower, I sat in the living room looking out at the beautiful misty hilltops as the sun came out. I remember wonderful morning waking to that view with A. in my arms. I also remember a morning on that very couch, another point in time, when I thought there was no chance I’d ever be with her, when we had stayed up all night talking. We agreed to be friends, but couldn’t help but keep our feet cuddling together.

I wish I could have another morning with her, another morning with her in my arms, another morning of her love and her smile.

As I was sitting on the couch and J. was getting ready for work, I heard him whisper to my mom, “He really is down, isn’t he?”

I spoke with her brother this morning on the phone. We may hang out and hike a bit down here this weekend, or maybe I’ll go up there for a night. He mentioned going to Titlow park, but that’s just a bad idea, I’m afraid. I feel like I shouldn’t be there without permission since it’s so close.

I asked him, “I’m not really a religious man, but maybe you could keep A. and I in your prayers.” He understood. He’s a great friend.

There’s auditions tonight and tomorrow for “The Two Gentlemen of Verona” at LCCC. I called Joey and mentioned that I was semi-permanently in town, and was thinking of going even though I didn’t have an audition piece. Hopefully he’ll give a call back today. I’d like to talk to him. There’s got to be a way to get over how things have been and have at least some kind of friendship even though we don’t share much anymore.

Today is the first day of the rest of my life

So, here I am.

Recently, I had a job with a non-profit in Seattle. I had a nice place, with a wonderful girlfriend and three happy cats. Now, I have none of those.

How did I get here?

The non-profit lost funding. I had to move out of the nice place. One of the cats was killed, and the other two moved out with the girlfriend.

There’s so much I don’t know where to begin. I still love her, and there seems to be some love left for me, but it’s running thin with each passing day.

I have problems I need to deal with. I fulfill all, not just some, of the criteria by which depression is recognized. I have issues from my childhood about happiness and self-worth that I absolutely must resolve.

She is wonderful, but I hurt her by being unable to be happy. I hurt her by having some messed up thing where sex became difficult in spite of my ernest desire for her. I pushed her away because I was unable to deal with the fact that a beautiful, wonderful woman wanted me when I was stressed and depressed about my life. That’s serious tragedy.

She needed space before we met. When we met, she was married. We honestly were going to live apart and date for several years, but we ended up living together almost immediately. She reminded me that I offered to go away for as long as she needed when we met, and that it was what she needs now.

So, she is finding herself, by herself. We’re still speaking, and nervously we hug and occassionally kiss. There’s still something there. There’s so many things that I loved, and would love again, being with her. Somehow I could never tell her quite how much she meant to me while we were together, perhaps in fear of chasing her away.

I love her so very much, but it seems like I start to fall apart when it’s time for me to gracefully exit. The time that we spend together is awkward at first, pretty good in the middle and then difficult when we part.

Today I am seeking professional help in dealing with my issues. I am going to explore ways to deal with my depression, and then I will work on my other issues.

Maybe, if I am the luckiest man on this earth, I will have another serious chance to be with her. Maybe she can forgive me for my faults and still find love for me in her heart when we are apart.

I hope she finds herself. I need to re-find myself also. I seem to have lost myself at some point. Perhaps it was mounting resistance by my issues, but I ended up shutting down for a long while. When we met I stuggled to break free from the lethargy into which I’d fallen, but I’ve only partially had success.