Growing and Changing

Growing is hard work, and out of your control a lot of times. It happens whether you think you’re ready or not.

Photo May 08, 3 30 11 PM

I truly want to grow and think I have a pretty great attitude about it, but I don’t. Not completely: I want to be in charge of WHAT changes, HOW MUCH … WHEN and towards what (perfect) ends.

The good news: I might be past the worst of my midlife crisis, and am embracing good changes. Want to read about them? This month (National Bike Month, coincidentally) I’ll post more here about a significant lifestyle change we made at the end of March right as my grandma died (which was harder for me because of other family issues it brought up than actually losing my grandma) and this crazy overheated early spring unfolded … AND as the person I’ve been spending the most time with other than my wife decided to move out of state for a new job.

AND PRINCE DIED! Maybe that has nothing to do with me and I shouldn’t take that loss so personally, but his passing has been a touchstone of grief and strengthening wellspring of affirmation and inspiration at the same time.

wild roses

Birthday Eve

It’s been chilly and super windy recently; felt like I might have jumped the gun on calling it an early spring, but either way … it will be official on Sunday. Regardless: I was SO FUCKING STOKED that our nearby taco cart opened back up … ’tis the season!!!

spring leg shadow

The sun feels good on the backs of my legs while I wait for my tostada salad with fish

Tomorrow is my birthday so consider this me wearing green in reverse. Or green wearing my shadow?

tree with feet

Card for our friends to get their feet washed & massaged by us

Today is the only full day I’ve had to myself in awhile … so I’m capping it off with some NATURAL sleeping pills, a noodle binge … and a sickening return to Candy Crush after keeping it off my phones for years now:

two bowls of greasy noodles & my gut

Noodle binge time!! two bowls of greasy noodles & my gut in polar fleece in foreground.

  • White bowl: thin spaghetti with olive oil, salt, parmesan cheese & capers
  • Orange bowl: thin spaghetti with sesame oil, chili oil, and (later) soy sauce

Happy birthday to me!!! I’m planning to FULLY exploit my wife when she gets home for a couple of days (don’t worry; she’s looking forward to it as much as I am!), and then I’ll spend a few days with my favorite guy. Although all of that could change if my grandma dies, which could happen very soon.

We thought she was going to depart last year, but dying is an unpredictable business. Still, I feel like I said my goodbyes to her at that point so right now I’m saving my family-grief energies for my mom during the after-part rather than hurrying to make another trip to see Grandma at her most breathing-yet-absent. It may sound like I have a lot of clarity and resolve about this, but honestly I don’t know what the right thing is to do. I don’t feel a pull to go be with her but I do feel some pushing in me to AVOID. You might say the right thing is to go see her — that I’ll regret it if I don’t and she dies before I get to — but honestly I don’t think I will. I might feel *guilty* — concerned what other people think — but that’s not the same thing as genuine regret. I don’t think Grandma will know the difference either way. Then again, that does feel a little like a lie to suit myself because I am certain she knew I was there last time and that it meant something to her.

It meant something (a lot) to me, too.

Tired Puffy Depressed Face

topless trixie after crying all night

I’m not sure why it’s taken me this many years to figure out that if I do have a type, that type is DEPRESSED.

Almost all of the people I’ve been romantically involved with have been people who’ve struggled with significant depression.

I could sit here and try to analyze why this is / has been, but maybe the most important thing for me to recognize right now is that THIS PROBABLY DOES NOT HELP ME WITH MY OWN DEPRESSION –and– I AM NOT HELPING THEM WITH THEIRS / may very well be making theirs worse.

Actually I don’t really know if that’s entirely true. What I do know is that I feel really sad, tired and incompetent today. I’m disappointed in myself and my own behaviors and weaknesses. I don’t feel hopeful about finding a solution, but I know I should continue to seek help. But not try to find it in (or expect healthy solace from) new (or old) relationships.

Personally at this point in my life I think the best thing I can do is focus on more things I can be (or already am) good at. And romance doesn’t seem to be one of those things I excel at, or make other people feel excellent at.

For one thing, if I don’t feel awesome about my work performance, I don’t feel really awesome about myself at all, and from there it’s just a downhill fast-growing shitball of low self-esteem for me. I really want my extra-marital romances to enhance and inspire and feed my work, but mostly what happens may be that I get consumed by and exhausted in my own obsessive love vortex of deprivation and drama that distracts me from productively working and puts a lot of stressful pressure on the people I love.

Or maybe I just didn’t get enough exercise over the past week. And stuff. Or maybe I’m just still learning, and that’s okay.

*****

I wasn’t surprised to read about Robin Williams’ passing (long after putting this post in draft mode, so that’s not why I felt depressed earlier today). Just surprised by how many people are “stunned” and “shocked”. I felt a kind of grim relief for him knowing that what must have been an exhaustingly hard and crazy daily existence is finally over. When I read people online responding to his suicide with well-intentioned pleas to reach out for help if you feel that way, it comes across (to me) as really insulting to him as a person and dismissive of huge parts of his legacy. And clueless about what that kind of depression feels like.

*****

After I wrote that stuff up there / way later tonight: I feel way better. People are nice to me, and I probably don’t suck THAT hard at romance and work and being nice and stuff. After all, I *have* been known to perform pretty sweet romantic rimjobs! But only on people I think are really REALLY special. 😉

I am lucky. And I hope all of you are, too. Even LUCKIER!!

And if you feel like killing yourself, I will not be one of the people thinking condescending judgmental thoughts about you. Unless you do it in front of your kids, and then I will think that part was a pretty shitty asshole thing to do. But I still won’t think I’m better than you. Just luckier.

To Live is to Fly

Pictures from my walk (I took nudies — WITH MOSS ON MY HEAD!! — but am leaving them out for now) and a couple of my favorite songs covered by the only band I’ve ever called my favorite:

Salal & ferns & tree trunks

 

fallen under Cedar

 

My wife knows woodpeckers errr sapsuckers?

 

fungus tree pillows & moss

lost wing

to live is to fly sky

I should have sent the other multiple choice answers. Like E) HOLY FUCK, can’t you read you stupid bitch?!? But I am a stupid bitch. So I didn’t.

went down fighting or flying?

 

After/In-Between Glow

In between a number of orgasms yesterday, some facilitated by Delia, some by vibrator and myself, some by myself, Delia, vibrator and some songs, etc.:

image

image

Oddly enough, though, I didn’t really feel better until I went to the bank later. Which has nothing to do with money and everything to do with having a way of interacting with people in a bite-sized, predictable manner. I hand them paper stuff. They hand back different paper stuff. We smile at one another. They tell me to “have a nice weekend”. I remind them “weekends don’t exist when you work for yourself” but hope theirs is pleasant enough. And I walk out feeling great!

Before that I felt pretty glum, like nobody gets off on my boobs enough/as much as I’ve been led to expect them to and the libraries will never be truly complete and why is that old lady staring at me while I’m alone in my car trying to get the right balance of fries and cheesburger in my mouth at once AND OH MY FUCKING GOD HOW LONG IS IT GOING TO TAKE HER TO PUT ON HER FUCKING COAT there must be a zillion buttons and doohickies and zippers and she’s standing at the front corner of my car and I have to physically turn my body away from the water view so she isn’t jittering around in my peripheral vision while I’m trying to eat/relax/escape. I tried to find love in my heart for her, but then I noticed she drove up next to me in a Saab. OF COURSE SHE’S DRIVING A SAAB, and now I have every excuse in the book to resent her. It took her almost an entire cheeseburger to get out of my sight! But then I got to stare at someone else eating alone in her truck so that was almost okay. Until I discovered my second burger was made all wrong and it just felt like I had nothing left at that point.

Just kidding . . . I was already full and I love it when “the universe” mocks me and I can smile ruefully to myself. Alone in the car. Knowing it’s not “the universe”, it’s just McDonald’s.

Also I read about a webmaster shooting himself in the head for financial reasons, and having done a responsible job beforehand of trying to get loose ends tied up. So maybe that made me feel sad, too. Because I can imagine being in that situation, except that part of why I’d want to do it (or not maybe) is that I could never rouse enough energy in myself at that point to write the non-dramatic, considerate notes and emails he did. It sounds like he did his very best at taking care of business, and when he couldn’t anymore . . . HE STILL TOOK CARE OF BUSINESS. Politely and professionally, and even had a back-up method to make sure he was effective. I just don’t have that in me. I would totally fail at failing responsibly (though I am not so stupid as to think a gun is a good method; I would NEVER do it that way).

Fortunately we still have enough money coming in that I have an excuse to go to the bank and be smiled and “hello”d at by name. I mean, at least I have Delia’s checks to take to the bank.

While my woman works I schlep around town in sweats and polar fleece, trying to make myself useful, trying to make the bank tellers laugh at the stupid jokes I tell with my stale french-fry breath (jokes = tiresome complaints I make with great enthusiasm). Then I come home all, “I got this for you, baby” and present her with the fucked-up lukewarm floppy burger with the bite taken out of it before I realized it had all that shit on it I don’t like. And how I know she’s a keeper is that SHE EATS THE WHOLE THING while I stand there watching her, asking if she likes it, and she’s all, “mmmmm, yes; thank you, honey!”

It’s definitely the least I could do after she got a cramp in her arm/shoulder fingerbanging me.

Then she went back to work and I . . . what did I do then? I climbed back into the loft and read a book until she called me back into the house for dinner.

I don’t know how anybody could love a Saab.

*****

I actually set aside a bunch of days, these being some of them, to work with SUPER HYPER FOCUS on one project, but (I like to pretend that) “the universe” conspired against me, thoroughly foiling my plans and leaving me with the sole task of stubbornly being almost entirely unproductive as an act of defiance at this cruel “universe” that clearly has it in for me. Just kidding sort of but really I am kind of confused, sleepy, sad-ish and constipated.

And things keep breaking. And as each thing breaks, the only thing that keeps me from fully deflating is the burbling gas of anxiety.

The best part is that there seems to be much more toffee than usual in the pint of this that’s almost gone now and I got a headache which seemed like a good excuse to take some “headache medicine” and we watched Constantine which was totally awesome, and part of To Live and Ride in L.A. (which is semi-awesome if you’ve smoked “headache medicine” and feel like dancing while watching dudes ride bikes).

*****

If you want to read a better short bank story GO HERE.

And/or more of my pathetic banking life and fear of failure in my secret blog.

In Bed with Ray Bradbury

Throughout his life, Bradbury liked to recount the story of meeting a carnival magician, Mr. Electrico, in 1932. At the end of his performance Electrico reached out to the twelve-year-old Bradbury, touched the boy with his sword, and commanded, Live forever! Bradbury later said, I decided that was the greatest idea I had ever heard. I started writing every day. I never stopped.

image

The patch on my back is to try to help my headache go away from spending too many hours working at the computer yesterday.

His stories are alive in my head often. I read him as fantasy and western more than sci fi, starting out in eighth grade with Dandelion Wine which I failed to finish for a book report (so I faked it) but what I *did* read of it stuck so deep in me and was so new to me genre-wise that I kept thinking about it and remembering the magic parts I’d absorbed until I read the whole thing and more.

When we moved into this smaller house I actually forced myself to part with a couple of duplicate copies I had of The Illustrated Man and Dandelion Wine (they had different artwork on the covers!) and all the others except the ones I’m in bed with here are in storage.

Not sure, but I think Ray Bradbury was the first author . . . oh no, wait. Judy Blume was probably the first author I thought of as a person whose work I wanted to specifically seek out and read more of. But anyway, LOVE RAY BRADBURY and am glad he left behind so so so many stories, and so many different KINDS of stories, and that (wow, I’m tearing up now thinking of how important this is to me) he wrote such rich and loved and amazing older women. It’s been a long time since I read those, so I don’t know how they’d read to me now, but I know that they had a profound influence on me. Those characters and their big roles in stories are missing in most of American culture. It was a blessing to read old women as important.

I didn’t grow up with Data or David . . . I was a kid in the seventies, when we had The Electric Grandmother:

Sweet Jesus, watching that again is weird . . . the librarians at our public library showed it a dozen times, I swear, and it felt like a really grown-up movie to cry to as a child in the seventies.

Pin It on Pinterest