Saturday, March 2, 2013

Dad and life and almost 30

A long time ago, many years in fact, I suffered a deep, suffocating, all-consuming writer's block.  I wanted to write, but I couldn't.  I stared at my computer screen, mind empty of every and all ability to formulate pretty little sentences in order to "express myself."  In those days, writing was important to me...I assume because I had just graduated college with a degree in creative writing...or because I thought that's who I was, a writer...or because my dad died and I thought I was supposed to write all the time instead of keeping my feelings all bottled up.
A year and some months have passed since I wrote on this blog the last time, and I find, instead of a writer's block this go-'round, I have more of a writer's apathy.  I feel kind of "meh" about writing these days. When I start, like right now, I enjoy it reasonably well, but getting to a point when I'm willing to sit down in front of my computer, or even with a pen and paper, takes a lot of energy I find I just don't have.  Life is busy.  Time is precious, and every waking hour I possess already belongs to something else, even if that thing is the TV.  Whether it's because I know now writing is not part of my career path, or because I've grown generally apathetic about a lot things I used to love, writing just does not take precedent in my daily life.  Sometimes I still wish it did.  Sometimes, maybe right now, for instance, I think, "Hmm...I could still be a writer...and really enjoy it..."  But even those flashes of interest dwindle within seconds, like a flame without oxygen to keep it alive.  I'm just...too lazy, I guess.
But since I'm here...right now...for another few minutes, or however long it takes to dispel the so-called wind beneath my little writer's wings, I may as well say a couple of things.  I miss my dad.  Tremendously.  I both love and hate that sticky feeling in my throat and the bottom of my gut that turns on when I see his photographed face or think of his sweet voice.  I love it because I'm actually missing him...which I don't always do anymore, but I hate it because...well...it's not at all a nice feeling.  This ghost of sadness that passes through me ever-swiftly in those moments...it's not a nice ghost, not one I'd recommend, and yet, one I'd like to always keep around.  FIVE years have passed, and now I'm running head-first into my 30th year (or is it 31st?), and all I can think about is that I'll never be 20-something again...and I'm really an adult...and my dad's really still gone.  In the first few weeks after he died, and probably months, I had a recurring thought about this future...the one I'm in now.  I kept thinking, "Someday it's going to have been FIVE YEARS since my dad died...someday it's going to be ten, and twenty, and on and on."  The thought's unbearable, really.  Partly because the first of those monuments has come and gone, partly because the number just keeps on growing, and partly because I don't want to be one of those grown-ups always talking about my ole pops who died when I was practically just a kid, who I just barely remember, and whose memory keeps growing into more and more of a shadow.
This death thing is not at all graceful.  People act like it is...like the memory of a loved one is this sweet song, like a flute at a ballet, that just keeps playing on and on, and someday gently fades into the grey of some magical morning when you wake up and even though that person's still dead, you're all just fine.  I suppose maybe one day I will feel differently about the whole ordeal...I'll be peaceful and wistful and talk about my dad like I would talk about the best ice cream cone I ever had back when I was 10.  Or maybe I never will, and maybe it's because I've got a lot more "dark" in me than normal people, or maybe it's because he really was the best dad/human in the world, or maybe I'm just dramatic and selfish and a touch of crazy.
If you're thinking, "Geez, is she still on that whole dad thing?"  You ought to never read my blog again, because when I do write, once a year, or every year and a half or so, I can almost guarantee it'll be about that whole dad thing.  I knew within days after his death that I would never really be "over it," though lots of folks tried to tell me it would only be a matter of time.  I'll never really be "okay" with my dad's death and absence, but generally speaking, I am okay, of course.  I just really, truly, whole-heartedly wish you knew him like I did.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

A Landing, of sorts

It's amazing how much my life has changed and continues to change in four years.  I'm starting to realize how much of the same person I am today as I was in junior high and high school, but of course, I hope, more mature and wiser.  I'm at an age when men and women in the same bracket experience both significant change, and significant sameness.  We're building careers, families, homes, and when someone asks me, "What's new?" I hardly have an answer more profound than a shoulder shrug.  But.  I have changed, and I do change, incredibly, as I really enter into a place and age where and when I'm having greater success becoming me.  In my early twenties, I was so lost, a chronic wanderer.  That vortex seemed so endless, and I couldn't imagine a time when I would finally feel "at home" with whoever that girl is inside me.  Thankfully, I'm arriving there (here) and the two sort of "beings" who used to inhabit this blue-eyed space are reconciling with each other--child and adult meeting in the middle to form who I am.  These changes, these realizations, are the most incredible of my life, next to the moment I knew Jesus.
I often wonder where I would be (developmentally, spiritually, maturity) had my dad not died that early morning four years ago.  I don't like to speculate too much on things I have absolutely no ability to change, or to see clearly, but I wonder if I would still be out there searching so persistently for this "myself" person, had I not been shocked into reality December 6, 2007.  That's the thing about life...you can't ever really know what "would have been," unless you're George Bailey, but I believe it's a very profound thing to let a tragedy change you.  To use a phrase I hate, it's sort of like an "out of body experience," stepping away from yourself and comparing the person you are against the one you were before such an event.  I can't describe it, but, in a way, it's almost like I'm dependent on that tragedy now.  Like when people say, "No regrets!" about their pasts, I think back to four years and 24 hours ago and I don't want to be that young woman anymore.  But to not be her, to be the woman I am now, I had to lose my dad, and though I never thought I'd get here, I'm finally beginning to be okay with that.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

I'm here again. Here in the same spot I'm always in after a few months adoring someone new. I can't quite say it's over, because I've only seen four days come and go without his usual affections, but it feels familiar. It feels like all the other times Boys have turned cold, but this might be the first time during which process I can point to no single thing that's led to these tidings.
I will say that this isn't the first time he's made me feel this way. I've felt his distance times before, but never so acutely. I've known him now for four months and the way our relationship has progressed, I don't feel like he should be able to treat me this way anymore. No, he's not my boyfriend; I can make no claim on him, but don't we know each other well enough by now to be honest?
Pray for me, friends. Pray for my wisdom and discernment, but really more for my sadness. Four days and I miss him already. The pangs in my heart grow more painful with each passing moment of his absence.

Friday, December 3, 2010

I did so well in the month of November, keeping on top of my feelings and doings. But I've struggled since to write much, because I'm terribly afraid of jinxing myself. I know that's silly. I know whether I write or not has no influence on what happens around me, but still I fear. If I divulge too much, I'll have to un-divulge it when it's over. And I hate un-divulging. It just seems so...sad.
But I guess I'll say something brief. I've found a very, very special man with whom I'm currently sharing my life. We're not a couple, we're as yet close friends, but it seems to be heading in the direction of something more meaningful. (Not that there's a lot more meaningful than friendship.) I'm being very careful this time...though I think I am every time. But with him, I'm so much more interested in a sort of future. He's wonderfully sweet and kind, creative and so witty. He's tall and handsome, has some beautifully unique features, like 2/3rds of an index finger. He's so far very different from the boys I usually date and I suppose that's a good sign.
But I'm being careful. My heart is as sensitive as it is tough, and I cannot make the usual mistakes with this man. So instead of thinking so very much all the time, I'm just being me. Just living life, taking it all in stride, hoping for the best, and living one day with him at a time. Here's to hope!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

I. am. so. boy-crazy. How is it that I've never been in love?! Sometimes I feel like God's protected my heart from all the silliness it seeks after...for one, by keeping me from falling in love, and for two, by keeping boys disinterested in me. That is, at least, what I tell myself. It's God's fault they don't love me. :) I guess boys aren't completely disinterested. That's half the problem. They're really interested! And then...they're just not. I don't get it, ya know? I mean, I'm the same Emily day one to the end. So why do they like me...and then just not like me?
What a life-long mystery. Moments like this, when I'm content and cheerful, and happy to wait for so-called Mr. Right, I can laugh about it. It's a silly little complication in my life, and I'm pretty sure it will all be resolved one day when I meet some sweet, wonderful, honest man who finds my quirky charm endearing.
When I struggle with this thing...this pattern I have with men (or they have with me?), I sit back and think to myself, "Self, could you (I) be happy never getting married?" And I do think I could. Especially now that Baby Chas has entered my world.
I want to get married. I want to have someone significant with whom to share my life, but it's not the thing of my life. It's just a thing. One of many things I'd like to do in a lifetime. But part of me would also like to be "Crazy Aunt Em" who lives all over the world and brings you cool souvenirs, and she's always smiling because she loves her life. And when you ask her (me) why she never got married, she just looks at you shocked and says, "Well! I still have plenty of time, young man!" (Or young woman, if I have a niece someday.)
But I am boy-crazy. I love those boys, all of'em. Perhaps one day I'll really love one of those boys and he'll love me.

Monday, November 8, 2010

One...two...three Old Chubs make a girl honest. 1) I miss the way you kiss, the way you tell me I'm sexy, the way you hold me while we sleep. 2) I wish you would mean to me what I want you to mean to me. 3) I think you're just my friend, until I see you again, then I realise all I want is for you to want me.
I want love. I need love. I need that man to need me the way I know, without a doubt, I need him. But time keeps passing and still he doesn't say, and I know deep down that he doesn't feel that way. This way. The way I feel right now - ready, honest, bound. I am bound. By him, by all hims who have ever been something to me.
Say you need me. Please, dear man, dearest of all dear men, need me now.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Last night was a big revelation to me on why I don't date much. My skin is paper-thin. I went on a date with a guy I'd been in communication with for a few weeks and we were both so excited about getting together, when it actually happened, it wasn't, of course, the violins and fireworks I'd imagined. I do this every time. I work myself into a frenzy, telling myself over and over, "Calm down, take it in stride, do not get your hopes up." But it doesn't matter. My hopes are always sky-high, even if I tell myself I have no expectations.
I want love. I desperately want love, and while I try on these very different, all uniquely special men, I can't help but hope every single time that this may be the man who loves me. At the end of all these experiences, I tell myself, "You just need to do it more...date more...grow thicker skin." But I can't help but wonder who I would be with thicker skin. Is it better to harden yourself, prepare for the worst, not let anyone in until they've proven something significant, or is it better to fall in love with everyone and be wounded with every experience?
I can't decide. I know there must be a middle-ground. And I know that I'm not completely to the one extreme, as most of these incurred wounds are barely skin deep. They heal pretty quickly, usually. But they are painful, still, and I feel like I could probably do without them.
I guess what I'm trying to say is, would it be better for me to change my heart, to harden that skin, load on the experience, and try to get hurt less, or to change my behaviors, date less often, be more choosey, keep my heart to myself.
Again, there's got to be a happy medium. I've got to find it, too, before I get hurt worse than I yet have.