For better or worse, mostly for worse, I have always been driven by my past. I let it define me and, worse yet, I let it define my future. It was a major part of my psyche to the point of obsession.
Recently, that stopped being the case. One hopes. I went to see a show by a local and successful musician that I have not seen around for some time. After the show, I decided to chat up a young lady and mentioned seeing that musician at a festival back in 2006. The young lady informed me that back in 2006 she was in kindergarten. Nothing to make one feel old quite like that. Though normally I am not at all bothered by age differences in one direction nor the other, somehow that conversation made me feel a little creepy. To clear my mental palate, I decided to chat with the aforementioned lady musician. Not a specialist by any means, I believe I flirted. Oh, my. And she did not freak out and ran away. Oh, myyy! It did not go further than that but it did provide a valuable realisation: it serves no purpose being obsessed by the past and letting it decide one’s future because it had passed and the future is full of possibilities that are yet to happen. It is a good aim. Reality, however, can be quite different.
As I mentioned in the previous post, as my friend and I were on the way to his family’s house in the mountains (the view from the living room is beyond spectacular), I was deeply touched by Nick Lowe’s new song.
“Lately when I go steal a kiss
I feel you pulling away
I know something is amiss
But what it is, you won’t say.”
– Nick Lowe, “Sensitive Man”
It is funny how certain sounds, and especially music, get so tightly interwoven with our memories. Hearing those words reminded me of the last couple of weeks of my relationship with the ex. But it was not the memories of that that rolled over me with all of the inevitability of a steamroller but rather the memories of the climbing Road trip we have taken in the happier times. The sense memory of driving back home at night, listening to music, finding her hand in the dark and bringing it to my lips, her tender caress of my hair, it all was so incredibly vivid and powerful! Where did that come from all of the sudden? Why did the past spring forth with the strength of the volcanic magma just when it seemed to have been rendered dormant?
Reality of dealing with one’s past is a complicated affair at the best of times. As much as the right away may be evident, the unconscious’ refusal to cooperate will keep on rearing its ugly head with the force of a multi-ton metal cylinder.
Last night I was made to feel old and creepy. Not on purpose though, so there is that… Feeling confident, I was chatting up a girl at a bar and happened to have mentioned seeing a particular concert back in 2006. She responded by having mentioned that she was in primary school back in 2006. Mike drop.
I must’ve dreamed a thousand dreams
Been haunted by a million screams
When Genesis wrote this song they were not talking about my situation. But in many ways it still applies. I have been living in the Land of Confusion for the past 6? 7? 8 months? Considering how things turned out I have clearly been the one in the dark since before the breakup. Since the breakup though, I have really understood what it means to live through those thousand dreams and million screams. I wake up in the middle of the night sometimes. Other times, it hits me like a tank during the days. I want to scream so hard that my vocal cords are ripped out by the force of the escaping air. There does not seem to be an end to this despair. I know there are others struggling with the same questions but it makes not my burden any less crushing.
And not much love to go round
Can’t you see
This is a land of confusion.
In this case, my problem is quite the opposite: there is way too much love. It fills me to the brink and it has nowhere to go for She is not with me. I think of Her and my eyes fill with tears. Some say it is better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all. Bullshit! How could that possibly be true?! How could that pain be worth anything?! How could running out of the office to escape in the bathroom and collapse on the floor hyperventilating and crying be worth anything?!
The refrain of the song represents which direction I need to choose. Though lacking in ability to see where to go, or the strength to continue for much longer, or the belief that the world without Her is not the one worth living in, let’s hope that one day I will be able to get better.
This is the world we live in
And these are the hands we’re given
Use them and let’s start trying
To make it a place worth living in.
Amen to that.
As I am writing this, the exotic sounds of Arabic fueled gypsy music are wafting through the Bohemian atmosphere of this weird cash-only bar.
Surrounded by the most diverse crowd of hipsters, artists, immigrants of all creeds and races (on a side note how is it possible that Eastern Europeans can manage to sound racist even when not trying to be? – overhearing conversations), my mind travels to places that I have only read about or seen in films or on television. And yet, my traitorous mind still manages to bring up the images of Her, my greatest love. She would love this place and this music. Whenever I imagine myself in some exotic locales, I keep seeing Her next to me.
The great thing about imagination is that I can imagine anything. So why do I keep thinking about Her rather than being happy without Her? She is not even that good looking. I can imagine being 6′ 4″ and being hugged by Uma Thurman but instead I dream about a plain looking girl with a very average body. But, of course, to me she is the most exquisite and intoxicating creature in the Universe.
I still love Her. I am so thoroughly fucked.