As I am sitting in the tent, eating my supper, Yours Truly is considering the current situation. We had to set up an emergency camp on a mountain plateau, far from any suitable location. The plan was quite different but due to the deep and intractable snow and darkness we have been left with no choice but to sleep here and backtrack the entire trajectory thus far.
At times like these, one cannot but contemplate the vagaries of life. We had a plan; it was a good plan. But it completely desintegrated. (As the military folks are apt to point out, no plan survives contact with the enemy.)
Yours Truly also has some plans. If you have read my previous posts, you know that I am working on being a better me. It is not easy but – not unlike a shark – if I stop moving, that will be the end of the line. Eventually, the aim is to be the kind of person that would be successful in interpersonal relationships, and especially the romantic kind. So as I am biding my time in a cold tent in the middle of a mountain plateau, with high winds battering the sides of the tent, on the eve of the Ex’s birthday, I am striving to figure out how is it possible that an exceptionally bright and beautiful young woman, 13 years my junior, would show romantic interest in Yours Truly. To date, we have only gone out on a few dates (though snogging was involved) and she is amazing. She loves a lot of the same things I love and same goes for things we hate. We have a tremendous amount of things in common. And I don’t know how to react and what to do with myself. Am I still in love with the Ex? Am I ready for a relationship with someone new? Does she even want one? How do I not screw this up? This new girl – let us refer to her as T. – is by far more pleasant, far smarter, better writer, and more beautiful than the Ex. And yet I do still think about the Ex. To my credit, this does not happen as often as before and, since meeting T., the intensity of emotions has greatly declined. Will she be the one to help me out of my ennui and perhaps more? Or am investing too much, too early and am simply setting things up for a disappointment? The latter is most likely true. But I yearn for someone to hold me close and see me for who I truly am and what I can become. For now, though, I am stuck in a tent with two other guys, hundreds of miles/kilometres from home and T.
Yours Truly is so truly and incredibly fucked. I am currently trying to dig myself out of the whole I plunged into head first at work. Why? Because I am too preoccupied with my own condition. My shrinks say it is a good sign though one suspects that my employer would disagree.
The main issue in this mess, however, is that the only thing that got me to calm down today and be able to function, was to dig out the photos of my EX. The one. One suspects that my shrinks would not agree that this is a good sign.
Hello my dearest. It has been a long time since I have last written to you. Since the last time, I have not expected to write again and yet here we are.
It has been a year since you left me and, oh, what a rough year it has been. A stormy time when waves of anguish, squalls of despair, and clouds of darkness were my constant companions. Say what you will about the dark thoughts, at least they stay.
We have met face to face a couple of times since the worst of the storm has past. It was all very adult and civilised. Yet underneath my calm demeanour a vortex of the pyre of my love for you still burns as strongly as when I wrote that fateful letter that set you off so greatly.
Not many things have changed in my life in these past twelve months. Still as troubled as long before our lives intersected, I have made strides to improve my dreary existence, to believe in myself, to believe there is a better future for me. These last twelve months of extensive psychotherapy have also opened my eyes to see your actions in a more realistic light of not being all that ethical or worthy. And yet it remains a mystery to my therapists and to myself why I still love you. What poison have I drank to still be infected this way? What sin have I committed to still suffer the consequences? Or is love itself is my cardinal transgression?
The road ahead of me is dark and full of mysteries. One hopes that when I see the light, it will be the end of the tunnel and not the light of the oncoming train.
Why am I so bloody angry? And I am. All the time. I am going on this rock climbing outing. In the group comments on the interwebs where the organising happens somebody posted a question about how we will be getting up to the site. So the first thing that popped into my head was “Fucking donkeys. I have never been in a donkey cart before and I feel now is my chance.” Came real close to actually posting that answer too. Then I saw my friend tagged me in a Facebook post and I got really excited about it – because very few people ever do that – until I read the post. She nominated me to say three positive things each day for seven days. So while before something positive was a respite for my brain which goes “What the fuck? What the fuck? WHAT. THE. FUCK!” the rest of the time and during positive moments is sort of like “Oh. OK.”, now I have to think about it and note it in order to post it later on because otherwise I’m that negative arsehole. Which I am but do not necessarily want to keep on being one. So I have to act and pretend being positive. And now this feels like a remedial assignment because I failed being positive enough the rest of the time. Why can’t I be a normal fucking human being?
I ran into her again. We exchanged a few words. She smiled. Bloody hell, I missed that smile!
I am still shaken from the encounter with the ex yesterday afternoon. Seeing her there, smiling, chatting with others only served to remind me how much I missed that smile, that voice. It also highlighted that Yours Truly has been living in the world of shadows and ephemeral memories for the past 11 or so months.
Ancient Greek poet Heraclitus wrote:
“Immortal mortals, mortal immortals, one living the others death and dying the others life.” In the all too brief a time that I spent with her, I have felt like an immortal god of old. Yet in losing her I have come to live the death of my greatness and I have been dying in the life without her in it.
And yet I have grown. I am most certainly not the same heartbroken wet mess that first started writing this blog nearly a year ago. She has lost that god-like status yours truly has endowed her with; I see her in a somewhat different light. Despite all that my feelings for her have not changed. My therapist asked me whether I would get back together with her should she decide to come back. He was not pleased to know that even after the way she treated me I would still go down that rabbit hole. Needless to say that yesterday’s encounter drove home the message that she would not come back to me. Seeing me there was nothing more than an afterthought. Just like our entire relationship.
How does one increase own pulse rate from a regular steady 80-84 to a breakneck racing 154? Simple: run into the theatre where you are doing a show and find yourself face-to-face with your ex sitting at the ticket desk. You know, the EX? As my friend puts it, The One That Almost Kills You. Fan-fucking-tastic!
Sunday morning. I am on a set, filming inserts for the play that I am doing. There is a great cast of people associated with this production. I did my part in two takes and helped out on the set for other’s camera time. I should be feeling great!
And yet yours truly is unsettled. I still get constantly rattled by sudden pangs of memory of love lost. It is not helping, of course, that my favourite and most important day of the year is coming up (no, it is not my birthday) and last year I spent it with who I thought (and despite everything, frankly still feel) was the most wonderful human being in the world.
People in my life keep telling me that I am a great chap, that I have a lot of things going for me, that I am funny and interesting. So why don’t I feel it? Why do I not feel that I deserve good things? Why have I never felt that way in my entire life?
(Continued from The Inevitable.)
It has been a few hours since The Encounter, if it can even be called that. I kept walking and it is doubtful she had even seen me. Granted, it was only a matter of time until our paths would cross; but it was shocking nevertheless.
And yet, that is not the full story for an ironic twist made the whole experience far worse. I was on my way to the theatre for sketch practice. The sketch we were working on was about unrequited love. Great! In the whole sketch I have only one word at the end of it. We were practicing doing things in different ways and basically just doing the sketch about unrequited love over, and over, and over again and, as much as I am looking forward to the full performance in a big show, the entire bloody time I was thinking that I would rather have been any-fucking-where else doing anything else but that bloody sketch.
Panic attack. Through years of practice I learned to automatically breath with my “stomach” (lower lung section). It is instinctual by now. But those instincts do not work right now. That learned behaviour is overridden by primal panic. I draw short ragged breaths as my chest rises and collapses in adrenaline-induced spasms. My heart beats like the loudest gong in my head. Sweat rolls down my head and the roots of my hairs feel like they are white hot. A buzzing feeling permeates my skin throughout my body. My mouth is dry and my tongue and fingers no longer feel like my own.
I was wondering what would happen if and when I saw my ex. Now I know.