Monday, February 22, 2010

Hellava week

Feb. 22, 2010 The past week from Valentine's Day to today was quite a journey. Valentine's Day had started out better than usual but very quickly deteriorated when my daughter and her dad went on a grocery trip to 'kato. After they had gone everything went quiet except for the wind. With the wind blowing it blotted out the sounds of the world outside. But even more than that, the psychic sounds of the world was quiet too. It was as if Valentine's Day focused everyone and made it a day off from the usual concerns. At that moment it seemed kinda nice.

So I got on facebook to play some Castle Age and looked to see if my friend was online. He wasn't. I suddenly had the feeling of being totally alone and it made me lonely. I thought to myself I probably should have gone them to 'kato especially as the impulse to go had been there, but I overrode it to stay and hopefully chat with my friend. It didn't take long for me to get a funny feeling that maybe he wasn't gonna show. Not long after that my one real friend in this town called me and was hoping I could stop by and visit with him. But given what I was feeling at the time it was definitely not a good idea and I had to beg off on visiting.

After I hung up I was hit with a massive emotional burst like an energy spike in an electrical circuit. All the breakers blew all the pent up anguish poured out of me. It even had a name who I will simply call Rick. I don't really understand all that I felt but it was enough make me have to lie down on the couch. Not even Castle Age or cruising in facebook could be distraction or provide any kind of solace. All I could do was lay there completely flatten by the sheer magnitude of what I was feeling. As the emotional storm swirled within me every so often a gust would hit me and the emotion had nowhere to go but out my eyes and in my sobs. And though I kept trying to find the source of it, everything was too jumbled and powerful even for thought. It was essentially just raw emotional pain. After a while it moved from Rick to my friend and though he seemed to be an important factor it turns out he was only the match that lit the powderkeg. Whatever it was that was exploding out of me went far beyond anything in recent weeks or even in recent years. This went all the way back to childhood but not at a conscious level. In fact there was no mind. It was just waves and waves of feelings gushing out like pus from lanced abscess. And that is perhaps the best description of what happened that day. It also made for the worst Valentine's Day I'd ever had. It will certainly be the most memorable.

At off moments when the storm eased up I'd try being on facebook but didn't have the energy to even do that. Even after my daughter and her dad came home a few hours later I was still in the deep throes of this hurricane. Eventually, the evening wore into night and they went to bed. Around 11:30pm I got on facebook again. This time another friend was online and he chatted at me. I was in no mood for his usual insults and banter and told him fuck you. His response was, u wish. It took less than a minute of our going around with this for me to finally burst out laughing. There was about 15 minutes left of Valentine's Day and he had gotten me to laugh. From somewhere deep inside I could feel something clean and pure and whole and it came out in the laughter. It turns out this dude in OZ with his badass attitude is perhaps the very best friend I have ever had. He doesn't put up with shit, nor does he get lost in it. At least not at a practical level. He is perhaps the realest person I've ever met, kinda like cold steel. And yet, if you can get past that you'll find a pretty interesting guy in there. Not so much for what he knows but for how he is and how he deals with things. In fact, he's the only person I've ever met that can match me for not being shy about things as he is completely up front about everything. Nor is he afraid to confront you about things, not in a hostile way, but directly, which some would take as hostility when it isn't. Needless to say it works for me and we are very good friends as a result. There's certainly none of the usual anxiety a lot of people feel and that is very liberating.

I suppose this exemplifies my own kind of motto of be real, get real in the sense of you get what you give. Unfortunately, too many hide what's inside by wearing a mask and presenting a false face. What is unfortunate for me is that I am almost purely reflective of what people give me in the sense of being like an echo chamber or a mirror. Whatever they are putting out is pretty much what they'll get back. If they are real, they'll get real. If you aren't then it can get strange real fast. Anyway, moving on.

My friend and I talked for a while longer. Not sure how long but enough for me to know that my mood had turned a corner as the day had ticked over to Monday. I don't remember how long I was after that either, but I did sleep that night.

The following evening, Monday evening, the friend who I had wanted to chat with the day before was on. It was a good chat except for a question I never should have asked. I don't know what effect it had and I won't beat myself up over it, but despite what he may say about it, the totality of all we have been through since the beginning of December can only have added to what he's dealing with in his own life. It may also be that my own question to him may have only been a match as well. But I certainly can't take him at his word that it had nothing to do with me as his withdrawal from facebook has not occurred, but his withdrawal from me has. Nor do I blame him for that. What I hope however, is that as time passes and things settle out, that we can become the friends we should have been. For my part I am sorry I pressed on things in a way I never should have. At the same time, the debt of gratitude I owe him will last the rest of my life for that is precisely what he help me get back.

I often mentioned there was providence in this. I still stand by that. Especially when other events that Monday occurred the way they did with people coming out of the woodwork in facebook to chat with me and the interactive dynamic that occurred in Castle Age. Not only that, but I had an energy I hadn't had in a very, very long time. And not only was there a change in me, there had also been a change in the very fabric of things. Somehow, something in the world turned a corner and was back in the right track. Maybe it was only me and it was I that had gotten back in the right track and the rest of the world was just responding to it. Regardless, what I knew for sure was that something fundamental in my life had been healed or sealed and I was no longer existing in a living death, one that I had been in since childhood. This is not to say everything is totally perfect now. Only that I am now whole and capable of not being emotionally devastated because my friend and I are no longer talking. Whatever need there had been had finally been sated.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

The Mask I Wear

A recent event leads me to post this. I first read this about 30 years. I find this as true today as the day it was written.

The recent event is the revelation that my daughter has been using razor blades to cut herself. She has shown me the cuts. It will be a long exploration of why she does it, but the core of it is in this poem. How it happens for each of us is different.

Ultimately it's about feeling connected and accepted. Unfortunately, our society and our increasingly industrialized planet, has not only broken our bonds from what sustains our bodies in the natural world, but the bonds between each other that sustains our spirits and balances our minds and gives us a place in the world.

We now live in a society that breeds both physical and mental pathology at a phenomenal rate. I have no idea what kind of future we are handing our children when we ourselves are as broken as the children we raise. ~NeoLotus

The Mask I Wear

Don't be fooled by me.
Don't be fooled by the face I wear
for I wear a mask. I wear a thousand masks-
masks that I'm afraid to take off
and none of them are me.
Pretending is an art that's second nature with me
But don't be fooled, for God's sake, don't be fooled.
I give you the impression that I'm secure
That all is sunny and unruffled with me
within as well as without,
that confidence is my name
and coolness my game,
that the water's calm
and I'm in command,
and that I need no one.
But don't believe me. Please!

My surface may be smooth but my surface is my mask,
My ever-varying and ever-concealing mask.
Beneath lies no smugness, no complacence.
Beneath dwells the real me in confusion, in fear, in aloneness.
But I hide this.
I don't want anybody to know it.
I panic at the thought of my weaknesses
and fear exposing them.
That's why I frantically create my masks to hide behind.
They're nonchalant, sophisticated facades to help me pretend,
To shield me from the glance that knows.
But such a glance is precisely my salvation,
my only salvation,
and I know it.

That is, if it's followed by acceptance,
and if it's followed by love.
It's the only thing that can liberate me from myself
from my own self-built prison walls.

I dislike hiding, honestly
I dislike the superficial game I'm playing,
the superficial phony game.
I'd really like to be genuine and me.
But I need your help, your hand to hold
Even though my masks would tell you otherwise
That glance from you is the only thing that assures me
of what I can't assure myself,
that I'm really worth something.

But I don't tell you this.
I don't dare.
I'm afraid to.
I'm afraid you'll think less of me, that you'll laugh
and your laugh would kill me.
I'm afraid that deep-down I'm nothing, that I'm just no good
and you will see this and reject me.

So I play my game, my desperate, pretending game
With a facade of assurance without
And a trembling child within.
So begins the parade of masks,
The glittering but empty parade of masks,
and my life becomes a front.
I idly chatter to you in suave tones of surface talk.
I tell you everything that's nothing
and nothing of what's everything,
of what's crying within me.
So when I'm going through my routine
do not be fooled by what I'm saying
Please listen carefully and try to hear
what I'm not saying
Hear what I'd like to say
but what I can not say.

It will not be easy for you,
long felt inadequacies make my defenses strong.
The nearer you approach me
the blinder I may strike back.
Despite what books say of men, I am irrational;
I fight against the very thing that I cry out for.
you wonder who I am
you shouldn't
for I am everyman
and everywoman
who wears a mask.
Don't be fooled by me.
At least not by the face I wear.

By Michael Sweeney.

Monday, February 08, 2010

Journeys of the Mind

I just checked and was shocked to discover that my next to last entry was dated back in July of last year. The shock factor is because that was when my time with facebook became extremely active in Yoville and I began meeting people. I had begun play Yoville in early June but it was July when I began to have a real social life within the global village of Yoville.

In itself, Yoville is a microcosm of real life. I call it life on steroids in a petrie dish. Everything you can think of in real life happens in Yoville. Sex, love, friendship, arguments, cussing, making up, threats, drama, losing friends, jealousy, obsession, stalking, and genuine caring. Maybe not car accidents but the people you meet DO have real lives and THEY have things happen to them or their friends or family.

At one time I practically lived inside Yoville giving my time and energy to people who are starved for attention, acceptance, and compassion. Unfortunately, I lost the friendship of a few people who mattered to me, one in particular and it still hurts. I hope someday he'll unblock and we can talk once again. But until then I hope he is well and coping with what he faces in his personal life.

One of the things being in the Ville did for me was to help me become more like the person I always wanted to be in real life. Real life is notorious for not letting you be who you are. But in the Ville, it's much easier because everyone is truly equal. Everyone begins exactly the same and has all the same stuff available to them. The differences are in the way we conduct ourselves, express ourselves, and use what is available to us in terms of income and purchases. The rest is just what we put out there of ourselves.

Well, that's it for tonight. Will continue this later. ^_^

Thursday, February 04, 2010

8 Winds

"A truly wise man will not be carried away by any of the eight winds: prosperity, decline, disgrace, honor, praise, censure, suffering and pleasure. He is neither elated by prosperity nor grieved by decline. The heavenly gods will surely protect one who does not bend before the eight winds."