You know how I’m all about presenting internal conflicts despite the fact that self-care is deemed weak by society? As I believe Indifference is a pathetic disguise masquerading beneath the term “socially acceptable.” We are afraid to take care of our emotions simply because we would then be admitting vulnerability to intangible burdens. Apparently that’s kind of gay. We must all be mechanisms of nature; submitting only to the natural impulses to sleep, eat, excrete and the optional *** (for those who allow themselves the luxury of succumbing to the “shackles of desire”).
But G-d damn, it is so much harder to call society out on its bullshit when whisked away by the dramas of social interaction. Intellectually I know the world is bigger than the interpersonal one, but when so much of me is stimulated by the electricity of connectivity, I become so afraid to come down from the communally induced high.
I love to be loved. I love to be needed. I love to be of service. Perhaps more than I love the ecstasy of self-earned success. Because what good is bliss when you have no one to share it with?
That question is of course a rhetorical one and not a concrete stance. I have to think about it too. How much am I willing to compromise one kind of pleasure at the expense of the other? How can I balance those things now so I will obtain the life I desire in the future? And who’s to say what is right or wrong or best or worst when it is all a matter of self preservation anyway?
What is best for us will be defined differently in every setting and circumstance and that is why we must choose for ourselves and extend our awareness to the procurements and consequences. No one would like to sacrifice in vein but at the same time no one would like to absent mindedly throw away opportunity.
I have a vague idea of what I want now and what I want 10 years from now. Unfortunately following my every whim won’t lead me to my long-term goals. I know. It sucks. If only I could do drugs, sleep around, and skip homework while maintaining physical health, a high self esteem, and a steady climb toward my college degree. The world screwed me.
No I’m just kidding. In all honesty I don’t want to do drugs that often and I really don’t want to sleep around. I just wish self-care and exhilaration were one in the same. And sometimes they are. But I can’t always distinguish and unfortunately when something tastes good there is always this looming assumption that it must be bad for me.
For example: Anyone remember But I’m a creep? My tribute to a very interesting boy who was fortunate enough to cross me. Well, the *** is back in my life. Now, I neglected to inform you guys for two reasons. The first being the famous busy bee excuse. I was all too consumed in half-assing my work load, living it up, dancing, chasing boys, kissing girls, and repairing said creeps impression of me for my own self-indulgent validation. The second reason is because I didn’t want to reflect upon the rekindling of our friendship with honesty; I was scared to reach an unsatisfying conclusion. When every impulse in my IDs and ego were telling me a friendship with him is what I want, I shuddered to confront the fact that it may not be good for me.
That’s why I started this entry bitching about how hard it is to maintain ones values in a socially charged atmosphere. The stakes are different. It’s almost like some law of group psychology forbids you from taking the time to truly perceive things individually when you are satisfied by the group dynamic. It goes against a very potent intuition to meddle when pleasure surges throughout your senses.
And I don’t know if I can label this joyous relationship as toxic. I really don’t know if I’m going against some life-fulfilling value for some pleasure seeking gain. That’s why I’m writing this blog. I’m trying to recount the events of these past months and reflect upon their present and potential effects; because until now I have not been able to evaluate the condition of my internal world. I’ve been enthralled by the social Aurora Borealis: glowing masses of colliding logos, ethos, and pathos. And as I stare stimulated and somewhat satisfied, my needs go on neglected masquerading under the pathetic disguise of indifference.
So here I am in this lonely dorm room on Friday night, March the 7th. My friends have left for spring break and my roommate is out for the night. I have a potential party to attend and/or a potential night of romantic indulgence (I would say sexual indulgence but that would inaccurately portray me as an impersonal chauvinist). And yet I am writing this blog. There is no one around to prove myself to and still something inside me tells me I should be doing something cooler/more productive. (***, I have a paper and math work due) Heaven forbid someone catch me in this act of alternating blogging and spider solitaire. I want to do this. Then why is my brain screaming “Sam, could you be a bigger loser?”
A prime example of an ego /ego-ideal conflict; the impulses of who you are vs. the impulses of who you think you ought to be. When I am alone these impulses are hardly conflicting, who I think I should be is untainted by the external judgments I perceive. But when I am stuck in an environment with endless opportunity for interaction, my powers to self-soothe dwindle, and my body screams at me to take advantage of the possibilities for validation and adrenaline.
That’s why I could not ignore this boy, not that I felt the need to for the purpose of maintaining a grudge. I was and still am just a bit apprehensive to readily ignore the intuition that told me I was better off staying out of his narrow path.
In the beginning avoiding him was just fine. My routines were well organized and pursued and my attitude toward him was tasteful and empowering. I put it best in a portion of this letter I later edited because of its backhanded snideness. But the ideas are well described and the damage is long repaired, so I feel no guilt in quoting this for our amusement. To mutual friend,As for that last bit, I’m sorry, but I laugh at your attempt to insinuate that I did not allow room for these so-called “staggering acts.” After a month of ignoring me when I very shamelessly reached out to him for closure, I would hardly consider any act one of love or selflessness. And yes, I have empathy for the kind of person that he is and the limits of the world that he exists in. I’m sorry he has come to believe that quality of life is measured by achievement, feelings are trivial inconveniences; G-d is as delusional a concept as an imaginary friend is, and girls are ***-sucking, money-grubbing demons. But I have more empathy for myself, the eighteen year old girl who has yet to get it together, manage her own time and too often falls victim to her own senseless empathy. So I very bitterly and sarcastically say; forgive me for disregarding your insightful affirmation. I am in no shape at this point in my life to appreciate it. I will say this though, that when he is mentally ready to open up to these so-called acts, he will make one hell of a catch. My sincere hope is that when he does, he finds a deserving girl (or boy if that’s his preference) who will fully appreciate how cool that kid really is. But if it’s all the same I prefer to have nothing to do with him. I think it is best to live with my attraction until it dissipates and redirects itself toward some other poor unfortunate soul.
Ha! I think I’m funny. Anywho, to make a long story short we had a pleasantly awkward reintroduction and my curiosity was from then on percolated. I could not suppress the desire to find out why he was mad at me, how that merited his severing the ties, and why the sudden diplomacy? But I had always wondered those things, what made the intrigue impossible to ignore was his presence and the tantalizing prospect of discovery.
This is my story and when told from my perspective it is about only me and him. But rest assured, there were and are other parties involved. ( Especially because the internet has allowed me to make this petty mellow-drama rather public). But basically in this World-View War, if I am small yet tenacious Serbia and he is self-important power Austria-Hungary then there is most certainly an Italy. Ironic for many reasons this Italy carries the same historical controversy over the exact motivation for the side-swap. I think we can all agree it was in part a reaction to disloyal hostility, a matter of convenience, as well as the result of a preexisting alliance. There’s also a United States, you know… a self proclaimed hero and selfless mediator (wink, wink). And perhaps a Belgium as well, one who tried to commit to contentious neutrality but was eventually bombarded by the wrath of the Central Powers.
But that is not my concern right now. My concern is Serbia because this is after all, her blog. Whatever I did or didn’t do, was somehow the spring board for a chain of overreactions. And though I seemed to be the origin of all this turmoil, I came out relatively unscathed. I don’t feel much guilt, I never asked for a raging war. I only refused to comprise my perspective; regardless of my size, circumstance, or stature-I will not be pushed around.
Without having to surrender, he welcomed me back… slowly but surely. He initiated with a reenactment of the early fall semester dynamic: A one sided sparing of pretentious intellectual vs. academically deprived bohemian. He even gave me a good old love punch in the arm followed by a merry “You Suck” during a drunken college celebration. But I wasn’t exactly ready to embrace his teasing as innocent play. Honestly, who the *** was he kidding? Not that I knew this at the time but he read my blogs, letters, indirectly heard my words…
“Of course every things cool, so what if you ignored me like I was some disgraceful human being not worthy of your time?, so what if you were fully aware that I had a crush on you as well as highly regarded our interactions?, So what if you knew your abandonment would and did hurt my feelings? No worries, it all water under the bridge…”
*** You. Seriously. I know you will eventually read this. And thank G-d, because I could never communicate this *** orally with the same candidness. I hope my writing puts it all into perspective for you, baby. You asked me to update the world on the latest in our Saga and I’ll let them know that you’re no longer my antagonist. But you are assigning me borderline sanctity if you think I’m going to let you off with anything close to a clean slate.
When I’m alone, as I am now. Thinking about this still irks me. You just- you wrote me off as a pathetic head-case who wouldn’t leave you alone. By flat out avoiding me you told me that I wasn’t even worth your anger… I wasn’t worth anything to you. And well, these blogs, my letters, our current friendship should say something about how much you were worth to me; even if it was for some unfounded reason. You know as well as I do, attraction is overwhelming, all-consuming, and hardly coincides with logic.
One of the hardest parts of dealing with the death of that relationship was I didn’t quite know how to feel. How does one mourn the loss of something they’re not sure they ever had? If it had been distinguishable disloyalty it would have been easier to call him an ass-hole and walk away. But this was an internal battle too. I didn’t know if I was entitled to feel betrayed or if I had only to reconcile with myself for assigning him responsibility in a friendship he never asked for. How much of the hurt was justified and how much was self-inflicted by delusions?
I don’t know, but his apology restored my faith in the notion of “human decency.” So it was not just a farce preached in my eccentric tight-knit hippie communities after all... Thank G-d, because I would not like to know the self I would have become without this engrained value. If I can help it I would like to never involve myself again with someone who hesitates to abide by it.
He chose to relieve his personal discomfort over consoling my heartache. That fact will always be true whether the pain was justified or not: He knew it was there and he ignored it. That’s not cool. But I gave our friendship another go because I wanted to. Plain and simple. I like him and the reasons are ones that seem both acceptable and deplorable.
I am stimulated by him because he is the puzzle I struggle to solve, he is the equally valid but opposing perspective, he makes me think, he challenges me, he is a worthy opponent in my eyes and he, being a male specimen of the mildly attractive variety, turns me the *** on.
We spar with equal force now that I have integrated academic pursuit into my priorities and he social status. We use each other, we help each other, and we have fun together.
But fun isn’t enough. I can’t say that this is a healthy relationship. Not yet. Though there are moments when I feel like I can trust him to love me, like I can cry on his shoulder, like I can say anything or nothing at all and he’ll still be there… Sometimes I even love him like a little brother: Probably because we have this kind of shameful origin to our bond. Our current relationship stems from a much needed reconciliation that now eases discomfort with perpetual inside jokes.
We have this history now and we share a mutual forgiveness for the abrasions caused by our conflicting awkward stages. Kinda like family. And the bottom line is he is not the self-preserving obscurantist I feared he was capable of being. And I am hopefully not the nonsensical waste of time he once thought of me. He is the sweet and sensitive person I saw glimpses of under his destructive struggle to mechanize life. He’s different now, he allows himself to be happy. He lets me in, he laughs with me, he reflects with me… he treats me with our unique, stylistic equivalent of respect and I often feel close to him.
But that doesn’t change the guard I now feel inclined to preserve or the foreboding I feel during inklings of attachment. In my mind I try to keep his friendship dispensable to me because I know I can’t rely on the strength of our camaraderie to persevere. But I doubt I am capable of true indifference. My ego is still very sensitive and it can hardly stand the “who gives a *** less” game we sometimes play. I only strive for apathy out of fear.
I, for one, do not trust myself and the reasons for my interest in him to be pure. I’m afraid I long for his company for the stimulation it brings me and/or that I have subconsciously given him authority over my self-worth. I don’t trust my attraction to his character either and I’m afraid it’s just some accidental psychological spell he cast by inadvertently triggering the right sensations and pushing the right buttons at the right times.
I also don’t trust him not to get caught up in his own obsessive projects. I know better than most that determination quickly turns into rigid and self-destructive pursuit. It’s not the boy who is evil it is the nature of self-deception which his intellect makes him prone to. In rehab they called it tunnel vision; the prospect of light offers a kind of empowering and blind hope. One hardly registers their isolation when all they can think is “must get to the end.” Freud called it the Causa Sui project: A fascinating concept really. And Sometimes I think I am just a part of his; that he treats me well now because I am a useful pawn in his little scheme. Similarly I have to speculate that he might just be a pawn in mine and that I’m projecting care onto him that I want to feel, and not one that he has earned.
Well this blog took a big fat chunk of out my night and all I figured out was that I have to manage my time better. *** me.