Thursday, October 18, 2007

A TMI Classic: Disconnection

I really had nothing on my mind to write about this week but since today I spent a long time writing probably too much to Hubby, a kind of long winded apology for not being as dilligent and punctual on my previous letters. And the whole letter was about how I didn't want my suckiness to be a sign of wanting to lose touch, but was rather caused by my own neuroses and that I don't ever want to be disconnected from her. Which was the point of this TMI, about my precedent of losing touch with people whenever they're out of sight, It's from the 9th of August and if you haven't read it, it's new to you:
I've been stressing over this for so long and I think it totally ruined my last letter to Hubby, it was full of laments and worries about not being able to keep in touch with people, which is it seems stupid to write to a person you actually want to stay in touch with. But it was what was on my mind when I was writing and it's what came out. I really should like start planning what I write, and in a larger sense do; spur of the moment, stream of consciousness might not always be the best way to go through life.
But enough about that, it's TMI Thursday, though on nights like this, these posts would be bettered labeled as a therapy session where I just vent, because I have no scinitillating details or stories. One of my biggest regrets and character flaws that I feel I have is my absolute inability to maintain a friendship when I am not in the same zip code with someone. I don't know what it is exactly. I used to trot out the excuse of "any one that's not in my field of vision is dead to me" it seemed cool in that devil may care live in the moment way but I think it was to compensate for those times when I would just forget about people, like during breaks, or not budget time to call them. I should probably start this at the beginning otherwise I'll be jumping around so much and this will be so jumbled that your comprehension level will be the same as if I never wrote this.
I suppose it started at middle school. All my friends before lived relatively close to me and we would hang out a good deal in the summers. In my neighborhood I didn't really know any of the kids because I was bussed to a magnet school like an hour away and so that started my cycle of only being friends with people I knew from school. Home was perhaps a separate sphere, a bitter sanctuary where I didn't feel the need to be so perfect and on top of every thing but rather a place to sit in my underwear watching television. But in middle school it was different. I remember in 7th grade math class how we all had to mark where we lived on some map and I lived so far south from everyone else that another map had to be brought on. That combined with such a long bus ride, and being middle school awkward with acne and bad teeth and not nearly that level of wealth totally contributed to self consciousness and maybe feeling embarassed about everything. but I still had friends that I would hang out with that lived pretty close so that was fine, and in the summer we would have some football passing tournaments so I would see my other friends as well. But those feelings of isolation only increased when kids started throwing parties and I could never go because they lived in the valley or whereve and it only got worse in high school. I never got my licence because I was never confident about driving; I would use as my excuse that I tend to daydream like all the team and never thought I had the focus to be a good driver, but underlying that was just my parent's driving histories and how I was in like 4 car accidents before I was 11 and my mom one night got into a pretty sever multi car one. I'm sure that ruined my confidence and that fear was always in the back of my head. But as I couldn't drive my mobility in that area of the city was severely limited, but now as I write this I don't feel it was that big a deal at the time. I had friends and I was never lonely; that element of knowing you would see them all again in a few months really neutralized feelings of estrangement. By the time I graduated I was so ready to move on and start the next phase that that fall I never really thought about anyone; they were off at college and I had decided to do AmeriCorps; everything seemed ordered and in place.
My AmeriCorps year was perfect for me; everyone I needed to talk to and be close to were with me like 24-7 for months; I didn't have time to think about the outside world, but after our closing ceremony on the way to the airport I remember crying so much (before I passed out due to lack of sleep) that I may never see those people, who were my life for that year, again.
I tried to stay in touch with everyone who was important to me, and I was actually successful; I visited them in Texas and Florida, certain people I would call weekly, I even got back in touch with a few people from high school.
But as I got into college, according to popular legend, I really didn't talk for the first few weeks, I don't remember that, but when I went off to visit one of my friends who was working in Vermont for fall break, by myself a rumour was spread that I was delayed in a snow pile in Canada, which was incredibly untrue but still a great legend. And perhaps created my reputation as a loner type.
(I don't know where I'm going with this, and the rum...maybe its not helping)
Anyway everyone loved me but I guess I was still a little distant or withdrawn but it was fine. I started a frat yada yada. I guess my current malaise started. Being friends with pre Type-As has its problem, as they have planned their lives and schedule each summer with internships to further their future careers. Each summer this was the same, they'd be off doing amazing things and I'd be in L.A. chilling, because I never really cared about internships, ( I wouldn't know what to intern for) and I was more that life will work it self out. But over that first summer we had sort of an email mailing list which I never knew about until that fall ( for reasons I don't want to get into in this post) but apparently my lack of activity in that forum led to notions of my demise. Apparently I didn't talk to any of them until I called one of my girlfriends for her birthday, which, according to her, pissed off a lot of our friends because they thought I wasn't as close to her as I was to them.
Anyway time passes, everything changes I stayed the same. My friends from high school I lost touch with; people graduate and move, and the same with my AmeriCorps team and google searches don't really help when one of your friend's name is Katie Holmes (damn you Tom Cruise.) But I don't think it was the whole "preparing for life/doing amazing things" vs. whatever I occupied my time with. Sophomore year when I was freaking out over a lot of things and possibly terrifying Theresa with my depressive/suicidal thoughts she laid out a theory. I think I was telling her about a dream that I always had when I was really clinically depressed of everyone I have ever known or been close to, being a face on a series of hills and how if I did kill myself they all would be affected in some way, and how maybe I didn't get too close to people because I didn't want to be too close and then cause them more pain if I did commit suicide, hence my "distant" nature. And this came from my best and most important emotional friend. She probably was right at that point. I was quite unhappy with my life and being a boy and maybe I thought by forcing some distance, emotionally, between myself and others I would be in a way protecting them, though I think my distancing may have contributed to an aura of hidden mystery with me. I got that a lot. I'm sure my repressed transsexuality also helped to make me shut myself off to some people, to some extent.
The summertime separations were hard no lie, just because all of my friends were on the east coast where they could continue a sembalance of a social life, while I was stuck here with no one I know. But just like in high school the hope of the next school year and the knowledge that I would see them again sped the months along. But of course, as I am wont to do, while I was getting close to one group of people I became "too busy" to talk with some of my old friends. It seems that if they would call it would always be at a weird or bad time. And I never got around to calling them back. I think there was the fear of not knowing what to say, the fear of maybe our only real connection being our shared experiences without which our conversations would be full of awkwardness. The knowledge that our lives would never be so tightly wound again, that we were moving apart. But its not like I never stopped thinking about them I think I just stopped being confident in talking to them, like somehow I failed in some way.
That kind of thinking lead to a love of my life marrying someone else.
And actually I think thats it, thats what's troubling me right now. I think its the fact that, especially know when I've been called an inspiration and courageous by starting my transition that I feel pressure to be something extraordinary, to live some amazing life. And so I feel guilty about when my life consists of me being stressed and feeling inadequate and mocked by hidden glances. There just seems to be a life exemplar that I'm not living that I feel disappoints those who care about me. That and the fact I still can't get a job. And so I think i'm scared of that same old fear that with physical separation there will be an emotional one as well. I really feel this pressure and subconsciously hold onto this belief that without a job, at this point I'm a bit of a failure and so I'm embarrassed. I measure myself and find me lacking. Or maybe its that other fear that I'm really not interesting as a person and I have nothing interesting to say; that deep down we were never really friends but rather that connection was forged due to circumstance and common trial. Like now I have phone dates to schedule with some of my really good girl friends who are so far away and I'm just terrified, which is not okay. I think thats why I'm kind of liking my guy friends right now who I exchange taunting e-mails or drunken texts with; purely emotional less. And that safety blanket of knowing I'll see them back at Harvard Westlake or at Duke is gone and I think that uncertainty is something that is incredibly troubling, that playtime is over and the real world is all I'll know from now on; I need to get through that but I don't know how to yet. (Oh and the fact I'm a girl now may complicate a few of my relations with friends from high school. I would love to go our athletic alumni reunion but I'm sure that would not go over well. Or smoothly. But just most of those friendships are out until a move is made on either side. So frustrating.)
And though I keep in touch with aim and facebook and whatever they just seem so false and tinny. I'm not sure if I could call someone, like verbally at this point. I'm not sure my voice would stand for it. Plus I hate my voice right now.
But there are some people I do make an effort to reach out to and I think the fact that they haven't reciprocated is really exacerbating my feelings. I really need to work through my self esteem issues. And realize these people actually do care about who I really am, and they are maybe the only ones on this whole planet who do. And to lose them as I fear I have lost everyone else would be the worst thing I could do, in the near future or for the whole of my life. Maybe my therapists would help me get rid of this self doubt; I just wish I could trust her as much as I do this blank screen.Maybe I do do better at a distance and maybe I'm that egotistical where I want to only say my piece and control the flow of a conversation to direct it away from anything I'm not comfortable with. But that's not okay. I'm tying to be open and truthful in every aspect of my life and I feel that to keep anything from my friends is a cop out and a lie. I really need to let go and trust and hope for the best in all aspects of my life, especially one so vital and needed and vital. I think what I need more than anything is an unsolicited I Love You.
But this too will pass. Once I get this damn elusice job I'll feel better about myself and feel like a person. Until then I'm going to try to keep writing letters to Hubby every month at least, and also to Suj and maybe that will be my means of communication to all my friends. It really does convey such a sense of humanity and personality, of care and thoughtfulness which is what I want all my friends to feel about me. That I do love them more than anything. And I'm done otherwise this will end up being more of the same than it's already been. Ugh I feel like Eric Carmen, like way too much like Eric Carmen.

Yeah all of the above? It probably made no sense.

okay and as I wrote Hubby today one more instance came to memory, that I'm not sure if I wrote above but I can't read my own writing. Anyway it was about how a girl, a friend of mine in like 2nd or 3rd grade went to live in Africa with her parents, who I think we're doctors, and I promised to write her and send her tapes of her favorite show, Rescue 911. I of course never did and never read the letter she wrote to me, I think. Oh and a "romantic rival" of mine for her asked me to send her a tape, which was him singing a Color Me Badd song which I listened to and then lost someplace in my closet. I think that incident shaped my life.

oh and 30 Rock is so damn hilarious. There was a brilliant joke tonight about family skeletons in the closet and Jack Donaghy, in passing mentioned his brother Tim who "bet on NBA games." It was great for me.

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