Thursday, February 02, 2006

I guess I should start to keep this diary update. It's been a while. Lessee... It's Feb 2nd 2006 and things look really differently now.

Sometime between Christmas and New Years, my mood changed a lot. I went out both those nights. Went to John and John Anthony's for an open house on Christmas Eve. John and Ernie were there. Briefly talked to someone named Daniel. What a handsome man! Talking to John Anthony on Christmas day, it turns out Dan lives nearby. He got on the line to say hi and exchange phone numbers with me. Then I went to Jim's house on New Year's Eve. Dan was there, I even very subtly flirted a bit. Gotta keep in mind though that I'm shy and not very self-confident, so the flirting is very easily overlooked and taken as simple gay friendliness. But the thing is that I actually entertained the thought of dating and started to take interest in someone. Shortly after that, I also found a nice cache of self-confidence. Not enough to let me walk up to a man and ask for a date, but enough to make me feel better day-to-day. It feels good.

Zoloft's side effects seem to be dissapating. I'm getting, uh, horney! more often now. There's only two people I regularly have sex with. Both call me pretty frequently. I have to be careful of the one though. I can find myself liking him too much. He's married. I definitely dislike that! It just bothers me that it's behind his wife's back. I don't want to be the "other woman". Ha! Like I could be mistaken for a woman. LOL. I don't want her to get hurt, but he's gonna go out and have sex anyway, sooooooo. I just have to make sure he doesn't get hooked on me. A few meetings for mutual physical needs is fine, but I don't want him to fall in love with me or something. It'll just be messy for us both. And yes, he's really starting to think fondly of me. We fooled around twice, and I know I left a VERY good impression . Yes, I'm that good. :D

I still have grief moments. Sometimes I bring forth a memory, try to relive it, and feel overwhelmed again. I think of Scott every day, but I'm afraid I'll one day realize that I hadn't thought of him for a long time. Holding him close to me with memories at least lets me "feel" him, and I still feel love and incredible loss when I think of him (starting to cry right now). I don't want to forget those feelings, or forget to feel them.

Enough of this for now. I was doing good up till a minute ago. I'll see you tomorrow.

Friday, October 22, 2004

I just got back home from the coffee shop. The gay and lesbian community association for our town is hosting Friday night get-togethers at the local coffee house. Musicians play, and you get a chance to meet people. I go because it gives me a chance to get out of the house and talk to people for a change.

I guess I should say that I'm having a really bad time right now. The breakup affected me more than I thought. Being rejected for someone else, after we shared so much and so intimately, is incredibly painful. I know he's going out and having a good time and has someone to lean on and share things with, and I'm alone with no practical friends and no life. Most of the grief I've managed to work through, so I'm ready to have good times and do things. Except that I have nobody to do anything with. The stress of it all brought on depression. I saw a shrink today and started taking Zoloft. My first dose was today and it made me feel weird, but takes a couple weeks before it actually has an effect on depression and anxiety. So until the zoloft takes effect, I'm depressed, anxious, and feeling weird. I just usually want to cry most of the time.

I went to the Raven last Saturday and Sunday in the afternoon for a couple beers. I actually had a good time. That was the sign that my grief is under control. Being in the place where we met and celebrated all the time, and not feeling grief, was almost exhilirating. But I still had to come home and be alone and feel the depression take hold.

I've had my third course in psychology this week, and I really like taking a college course. I think I'm going to arrange to always have a course to go to. At least I feel like I'm doing something. I enjoy sitting in the class with other students (of all ages). It's been happening that we finish early and the teacher sends us home. This makes everyone except me pretty happy. I get to go home and just watch TV and remember I have no life yet.

I can't wait for this year to be over!

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

I saw my therapist today. I brought up that I think I may need to go on some meds. My emotions have been flying all over the place lately, I just can't keep up with them. I had a great time on Friday with Jim and new boyfriend and his daughter, and then I was sobbing all the next day. I have highs, and then plummet almost instantly into horrible lows. I just know that I'm tired now and can't keep doing this, especially with the holidays coming up. Maybe I'm clinically depressed, maybe not. I sure hope some meds are justified and will help even out the emotions so I can deal with them better.

Another problem I'm having is that I worked through a lot of my grief. My personality is resurfacing again. I'm joking a lot and laughing and am more open. My personality wants to shine right now, but I have too few people in my life to share it with. When you have the desire to laugh and joke around, but there's nobody around you, it leaves you feeling alone and that everything is hopeless. I need to meet more people. No, I need more than that. I need special special people in my life, and I just don't have that. I hesitate bringing anyone during this period because I'm such a mess, and that makes it even more difficult. I want to have someone, but I'm afraid to let people in right now while I'm such a mess.

I miss having Jim around to hold me and cheer me up. We're still friends, and still call each other. But I miss being able to be initimate with him. Not necessarily physically intimate, just... intimate emotionally. I still could, but since he has a serious boyfriend now, he won't be that way with me, and it's not right for me to dump stuff on him if he's never going to rely on me.

I still talk to Scott every night. I miss him terribly and don't want him to ever think I forgot about him. So I talk to him every night and pray he hears me. I tell him everything that's happening to me, I tell him how much I love and miss him, and I ask him for advice.

I'm still waiting for an answer.

Saturday, October 09, 2004

Emotional Healing: Some thoughts on how we think and heal

I started thinking about why we feel such pain when we lose someone important in our lives, and how we get over it and heal.

The thought occurred to me that your brain is like a giant building with lots of little rooms and twisting corridors. But when I say "giant", I mean the largest building you can ever imagine, containing millions of rooms and corridors. And it's perpetually under construction and building new rooms and hallways.

When we experience something, those memories are placed in new little rooms. A hallway and route to that room is mapped out, and all of the sights, sounds, experiences, smells, and memories are stored. They're not all in one room, but small clusters of rooms, sometimes spread out. When we recall a memory, we automatically walk the hallways to the appropriate room and recall all of those sensations/memories. Sometimes we shortcut through other rooms. Even the hallways are filled with pictures and sights and sounds.

When we lose someone, the pain of the loss is stored in this mansion too. All of the pain, which are tangible things in this mansion of ours, are stored in rooms and in hallways. The realization that person is gone, the pain of loneliness, the pain of missing him, and the memories of how it happened. Your mind, being the wonderful indexing machine it is, stores these painful things with the memories of that person. It builds new rooms for these memories, and even places them along the routes to the memories of that person.

When you recall that person, you're walking down the hallways to the rooms with all of the memories about him. Along the way, those painful memories are there too. As you recall him, you're presented with the other memories. When you recall that trip you both took, you also recall his current absence and maybe even how he died. If you can picture these hallways you walk down, those painful memories are like razor blades embedded in the walls. As you walk down the room, you're cut and sliced, until when you finally reach the main room of the memories you're recalling, you're so bloodied and hurt, those good memories are overwhelmed by the pain.

But the mind is very resourceful. Since that mansion of your mind is under construction, your mind starts building new hallways to those rooms. It comes up with new routes and builds new rooms. These new routes don't have those painful memories in them. After time, you find that more and more often, you're taking the new, painless route to get to those pleasant memories. It doesn't just stop there though. Even the painful memories in the rooms you're going to are rearranged. They're moved off to the side, put underneath other things, maybe even placed in boxes. Your mind doesn't discard anything, it just puts them out of sight. They can be looked at anytime, and will hurt just as much, but they're not in your face all of the time anymore.

Even the painful razor-filled hallways change with time. What happens if you have a brand new razor you just bought, and you put it away for a year or two, then pull it out and run your finger across it? You get cut. What happens if that razor is used all of the time? If every day you cut yourself with it while shaving? It gets dull.

So it appears to me the best way to heal is not to forget and push aside all memories of your loved one, but instead, to walk down those hallways to get to your memories of him. New hallways are built, painful memories are put aside, and the razors get dull. At some point, you can have all of your good memories of him with very little pain. There will always be something there that can bring on pain, but it gets easier and easier to avoid them. You simply find they're not in your face anymore, so you're not looking at them as much. And those dull razors, while still being uncomfortable, don't cut anymore. They may scratch, but eventually, the joy of those good memory rooms will overwhelm any discomfort you feel from walking those hallways.

Well, this was poorly-written, but it at least let me get some impressions I was having written down.

Well, I guess it's time to pick up my blog again and start posting.

A lot happened this summer. The main thing being me getting dumped in August. Jim withdrew and was keeping his distance from me. He showed up at a social event I went to and had a date. I knew he was still seeing other people, we never said we were are dedicated couple, but it still hurt. We had a trip to Toronto planned for the next week, and he said he was really looking forward to it. That trip was hard. He was distant and not at all like he was the previous months. I then brought the subject up and he said that he wasn't ready for someone to rely on him as much as I was relying on him. Maybe I was. He was one of my only outlets for doing anything social. He said that he wasn't serious with his new "friend". So I just tried to take it all in stride.

It was only this past week when we were talking that I asked him how's it going with his new "friend", and he said they were getting serious. It felt like someone just stabbed me. I was feeling really good and was on a high. I was getting over him and starting to concentrate on myself. But when he said that, I just felt awful. Now it was more than just he didn't want to get serious with anyone, it was that he didn't want to get serious with me. In a few seconds, any self-esteem I had built up just disintegrated. I was getting the realization that people tend to like me and enjoy me, but once they get to know me, they lose interest.

I miss having someone special. I miss waking up next to someone I care about, and who cares about me. I've had some casual sex in the past few weeks. It never leaves me feeling anything but unfulfilled. I'm not pursuing casual sex anymore. I guess I just have to get used to the fact that I'm alone. I can have friends and people to talk to on the phone and sometimes even someone to do something with, but I just won't have someone special to really share things with.

I partied with Jim and his daughter and his new boyfriend last night. The guy is really nice. He's charming and funny and I can see why Jim likes him. He helps make you forget your problems. He makes you laugh a lot and is always upbeat and fun. I still wonder though if the main reason Jim is seeing him is because he makes him forget everything and cheers him up. What we went through is a life-changing event. It can change you for the better if you do it right. To ignore it and forget your previous life with your late partner isn't the way to go. You should cherish that life and integrate it into your new life. I hope Jim doesn't find that he's just trying to escape and that the grief and pain is still there waiting.

My own grief has changed significantly. I still grieve over Scott. I talk to him every night and miss him incredibly. But now the feelings I have are more self-centered. It's like I've accepted that Scott is not with me anymore, and am concentrating on the fact that I'm alone. I don't dwell on Scott, but dwell on my own loneliness. I dwell on the fact that I had someone special who rejected me for someone else (and I still have incredibly strong feelings for him, too). I dwell on way too many things that aren't good for me. Maybe I have depression? Definitely have to make an appointment with my doctor to get an exam and maybe an evaluation for depression.

The one bright thing right now is that I've started a class in Psychology. It's interesting and fills up Wednesday evenings. It's fun to walk through the college campus and be in a class with other people and learn something new and interesting. I'm definitely taking more courses next semester! Anyway, that's it for now. I'm going to post a few thoughts I came up with on grief, and maysome some spiritual thoughts I've had.

Wednesday, June 02, 2004

"God never gives you more than you can handle."

I've had this said to me before on several occasions. The wording may change, but the meaning is always the same. There's a certain amount of comfort to be found in it. Knowing that nothing that happens to you is insurmountable, and that God (who is all-wise) knows you are capable of handling it.

I also don't believe it.

There's two incorrect assumptions in that sentence. The first being that God micromanages everything that happens to us. That when anything at all happens, it's God's purposeful and direct action. I don't believe that for a second. I think God just made up the general rules and laws of this universe, and sometimes really bad and awful shit happens to people. It's the random nature of the universe that He created. In a way, I guess it all comes from Him, but only in a general way. Surely not the purposeful and direct action that's implied.

The second thing I don't believe about that sentence is the "more than you can handle" part. Am I handling this? Usually. Sometimes. Occasionally. Rarely. Never. All of those apply. There were times early in my grief that I simply couldn't bear my loss. Some say that I did bear it, and continue to to bear it. But breaking down, falling to the floor, and screaming is most definitely not bearing it. My friend said to me "I don't know how you manage to even get out of bed in the morning." If I had a choice, I wouldn't. If I really had a choice, I wouldn't be bearing this at all and I would just die. But you see, I have no choice. I have people that depend on me. I don't have the strength, courage, or will to end my own life. Ending your life is the only real choice you have, and for many of us, it's not a choice. So I endure the pain because there's no alternative. It's still there. It's there every day. It continually awakens anew and whittles away any hope of future happiness. Intellectually, I know that eventually I'll recover and happiness will be in the future. Emotionally, I can't ever imagine really being happy again. The best I can hope for is to just bide my time and endure the rest of my life until the eventual end when the pain ends.

It doesn't feel like living right now, it just feels like endurance. Things will change, I know, but it sure doesn't feel that way.

Tuesday, June 01, 2004

I went up to Jim's house on Sunday, spent the night, and attended a cookout he threw for his friends on Monday (Memorial Day). It was great spending the night with him, and it was nice being with him and his friends. Well, it was hard being with his friends. They all know each other really well, and I'm the odd man there. At a couple points, I felt very very alone. I became very aware of the fact that I no longer have my soulmate with me. I went downstairs to sob a bit and managed to compose myself before anybody came down. Overall though, it was OK.

Today, I had a real surprise at work. Pierre Robert called from WMMR! It was so odd actually hearing him on the phone and talking to him. And what totally blew me away was that he was calling to let me know that he was playing the song I requested last week! Pierre, I really love you for calling me and playing that song! I ran out to my car and listened to "Best Friend" from Queen. I cried during it, but I really wanted to hear it. Part of me believes that Scott was aware of it too and knows how I feel.

Ooooh you make me live,
Whenever this world is cool to me,
I got you, you're all I need.
Ooooh, you make me live now honey,
Oooh, you make me live.
You're the best friend that I ever had.
I've been with you such a long time,
You're my sunshine.
And I want you to know that I really love you.
You're my best friend.

Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Today is our 24th Anniversary. It was one of the most awful depressing experiences I ever endured. I started the day out by going to the cemetary. I got a small basket of flowers that I placed in front of his cremation niche. Our niches are at floor level, so the basket was right in front of his. The card on the basket was a "Happy Anniversary" card, and I wrote "Scott, All my love goes out to you. Bobby". I cried placing it there, and continued crying for quite some time.

Like we did every year, I went to the Raven (where me met). We always went for dinner. I didn't think I could endure a whole dinner, so I went for lunch instead. I ordered the Pate Maison (which Scott always ordered as an appetizer) and a Caesar Salad. I also ordered a Dewars on the Rocks. I hate Scotch, but it felt right to be drinking it since it was his favorite drink. Maybe it was masochistic of me, but I kept the drink pushed away from me towards the other side of the table.... like Scott was there and had just stepped away for a moment. Seeing that drink there without him was agony, but in a way, it helped me more easily visualize him sitting there. It was hard, but I managed to make it through lunch, then drove west to see Jim.

Jim's daughter (in college) is staying with him, and I wanted to meet her. He invited me over for dinner because he knew I'd be depressed today. So I drove up there after lunch listening to Pierre's workforce blocks on MMR. That morning, I sent an email to Pierre asking him to play "Best Friend" from Queen. I imagine I didn't make the request in time, because he didn't play it, but I was stunned when he played something else. He played a brand new song from Rush! Wow! I didn't even know they recorded a new album! I can't imagine a nicer anniversary gift than to hear a new song from Rush. Well, a nicer gift would be to have Scott back, but within reason, that's one of the best things I could've had. I wonder if Scott (or some higher power) had his hands in on it?

Dinner with Jim and daughter was very nice. At one point, I forgot it was my anniversary, and then felt guilty and sad when I remembered again. But it was still good seeing them and forgetting for just a little bit. Maybe now that I've gotten it all out of my system, things will improve a bit.

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