Strangely, this past year did look a lot like 1999 in a lot of ways. I had some great expectations, a lot of changes, some serious high points but in the end many disappointments. I was once told that success was an island across a sea of failure. It maybe true, but god that sounds sadistic, doesn’t it? I was selling vacuums door-to-door back then, too, so maybe a line like that goes with the territory.
For me, 2009 was about friendship and the failures of it. I thought in my 38 years of living that I had it all sussed out and was capable of handling my friendships, creating new ones, strengthening existing ones and generally being a good steward of my life. But I think everything changes whenever your attitude shifts. This year, I have no real reason why – other than too much isolation, but mine did dramatically. I was always a bit dark inwardly, but a very happy person. 2009 was the year that someone turned out the lights on me. I’m just glad it’s bloody over.
I’ve always believed that friendship is greater than love. Maybe if you’ve been reading this blog for awhile, you might scream foul, but in truth, I believe that wholeheartedly. Why? Because before any kind of love can develop, there must be friendship. Even with yourself. Being true to yourself is where that starts just in case you were curious. For me though, the hardest thing sometimes is just being me.
The more enduring friendship is, the longer love will last. The chemical equation of that is actually rather simple in its process. You just have to think on it a bit and utilize it day to day.
I very much believe in love and live for it. I’ll make grand statements about it, too, and won’t flinch for a minute. Ergo this post, haha. But at the end of the day our friendships are the most important to us than all else. Without them, we really get lost. Sometimes lost within ourselves and sometimes even from ourselves. I think that’s what happens. I know that’s what happens. This past year has been all about this. I’ve pushed people away, cut people off, struggled to get people closer to me (which never works) and done my best to be both true to my word and honest at the same time. That last bit is a bit tricky, too. Watch your step. Some people will just resist, have zero to little trust and pull away to do their own thing. People will keep you at arms length and even treat you as if you have the plague. But I’ve been dished worse. It just hurts more as you get older. But, it must be, as Beethoven once scribbled on the margin of a certain composition. I begrudge no one who has no interest in me as a human being. I can’t be everything to everyone.
I have been with the same woman almost ten years now and people who know us always think there’s some turmoil brewing, and while it is difficult being with someone so completely opposite than yourself, I’ve gotten used to it. Under all that though, what makes what we have work, or continue to work, is the desire to be good friends to each other even when we’re not. I haven’t found a perfect day yet, but I do have many perfect moments and as far as I’m concerned, I’ll take it. I appreciate anything, no matter how small.
I get a lot of emails from people privately telling me their thoughts about what I write here. I really enjoy reading emails from people that I know and from folks I’ve never even met. Most folks don’t want to go on record and post a comment below. I respect that. I often get comments that say how surprised they are about how open I am about my life here. The truth is that I have little to hide, or rather little I want to hide. My desire is to be out in the open and share what I have, what I’ve been through and perhaps what I’ve found out. I think I should actually be more candid as this blog may be here much longer than me. I’ve been what’s known as a ‘diarist’ all my life. I have boxes in my garage full of old diaries that I keep. Switching them to online isn’t really that big of a leap. You just have to learn be really good at speaking in code though as not everything is suited for another’s eyes. I do my best, but often fail. People often take things I say, and write, the wrong way. Moreso when I speak though. It’s a curse. Usually it has more to do with not having enough time to be clear.
I have this pervasive feeling that most people don’t care about me or give a damn and it’s just something I can’t shake. Ever heard the wind whip through the trees at night? That’s how loud and clear the feeling is to me. I wish I could jettison it, but I can’t. Part of the problem is that I have no outlet to explain myself or the way I feel. Most people I know aren’t inclined to listen. I think they bore and tire of me, too – quickly. My wife just rolls her eyes at me these days. She’s never been one to understand emotion anyhow. Well maybe my emotions, haha.
I’m an emotional human being and most people don’t have time for that. I’m my own keeper and so it shall be. I write what I have to and just keep the rest in. Friends. Yes back to those. Yes, life was better when I had more of those. But one won’t always have those luxuries. When I sleep at night, I just tell myself those things that I do, and know that maybe later on I’ll have someone to confide in. For now, thank god for prayer.
I think all of us just want ot know where we stand, want to know the ground around us, even if it’s shifting.
Charles Bukowski once said that God had put a shield around him to keep certain things from life ‘from him’, purposely. Maybe that’s what’s going down with me. Maybe that’s the plan in place for time being. Perhaps it’s always been that way, and I’m just snapping to the glass jar around me, like a moth constantly trying to escape.
I wrote this in my head earlier today while hiking, the first draft seemed much more eloquent. Maybe I should start carrying a voice recorder, lol.
And to quote Sting, once again:
A thousand times the mysteries unfold themselves
Like galaxies in my head
On and on the mysteries unwind themselves
Eternities still unsaid