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I promised myself  when I started this blog that I would keep it going for one year. I’m just past the halfway point and my interest in talking about problems is definitely flagging.  It’s not that I don’t have problems, they are just the same ones and I don’t know how many times I can tell myself to just get over it, that I need to work on letting things go, that I need to give myself a break.  So if I’m going to keep this up, I need to figure out a different tack to take.

I think I am in a better place than I when I started this.  I thought about going back to the beginning and revisiting some early posts for comparison but that seems like it’s asking to recreate heartache and I have no interest in that.  As I said, my problems are even starting to bore me, so doubling up talking about them surely isn’t the way to go.  Making a list of good things in a given day/week seems so forced and alien to me that the few experiments I’ve done with it were very unsatisfying.   Still I doubt I can maintain this a dumping ground for my troubles and my drama so positivity seems the only direction to go.  Maybe my best bet is to do what I set out to do, which is talk about things I”m not talking about anywhere else.

I’ve been reading a lot lately.  This is my personal, classic escape and it’s good one.  Not only do books take me to place out side my troubled mind, but even the trashiest of novels gives me something new to think about.  Based on limited research, I’d say that prolonged reading actually pulls me out of myself enough, over a period of time to leave in a new place at the end.  It’s not a cure per se, but if I am remembering correctly, it has boosted me out of some pretty low places.  Also it seems to send my thinking to enough different places that I end up feeling more creative.  And sometimes affects my dreams.

I finished the 7th Sookie Stackhouse book before bed last night (sidenote, reading does, unfortunately interfere with how much I sleep, as often I’d rather read than do ANYTHING else) and this morning I awoke from a dream in which I was the main character.  Except in my dream there were no vampires, nothing supernatural, and my maybe gonna be my new man was Anderson Cooper, and that parts of Eric and Bill were played by (no shock here) Oak and Hawthorn.  Okay brain, thanks for giving me a gay man as my dream ideal.  No more guacamole before bed for you.

I also had the weirdest memory while reading earlier in the evening. Just a really clear memory of the entirety of The Monster at the End of This Book.  The whole ‘plot,’ followed by a memory of  getting that book out of the library multiple times when I couldn’t have been more than six or seven.  I remember pouring over the book, finishing it and starting it right over again.   One reading of this book reveals the secret, that the monster Grover is so afraid of is just him, lovable, furry Grover.  What spurred this memory? That all our monsters are only ourselves, or created ourselves or to be discovered in ourselves, or something not to be afraid of after all.  What was I looking for, pouring over this book as a small child?  Did it just tickle me that he was so silly to be wrong every time I read it?  Is there a deeper philosophical means in the story?

There isn’t much more lonely than being sick when you live alone.  Ugh.  I mean I’m sweaty and nasty and not fit for company, but still I wish there was someone who’d bring me water and  make me soup and feel sorry for me.  Bleh.

I went on my first date since Hawthorn and I broke up last night.  It was fine.  I mean it wasn’t unpleasant or bad or anything.  I didn’t suffer in any way during it.  But he held no real attraction for me and after the fact I liked him less and less the more I thought about it. It felt like there was some small measure of meanness inside him, buried under a façade of jollity.  And he kept interrupting me, like I don’t think I finished more than half the stories I told before he jumped in to tell something.  But it’s out of the way, it’s done, and I guess it’s a step in moving on.

And I think while talking about the date in advance I articulated where I am at with Hawthorn right now.  I think I won’t feel better until he tells me he made terrible, terrible mistake by leaving me and then we can shake hands and agree that it’s best this way anyhow.  I just want him to feel at least a little of the loss I feel.  And no, I don’t think he’ll ever say that.  I did point out recently to him that all the things I said about his choices and what he should be doing with his life and how we should have approached our relationship, things I said two years ago that all turned out to be true and I got very heartfelt, ‘you were right and I was wrong,’ so that was nice.  He’s apologized for essentially taking me down with him when he wasn’t being aware enough about what he needed in life to recover from his own divorce.  He’s apologized for not taking my counsel on that topic when I offered it.  But I’m still not sure he knows just how much he hurt me and I’m pretty sure I won’t completely forgive him until he says I was the best thing that ever happened to him and he shouldn’t have let me get away.  Which he will surely never do.

Today’s answer is to the question: What if I didn’t have to apologize?  What if I didn’t have to apologize for being so hurt, so vulnerable, so open to love and so lost without it.  What if I didn’t have to apologize for needing so much time to myself, so much time to recover, so much space to heal?  What if I didn’t have to apologize for taking so long to find my place in a world I never expected to be in?  What if I didn’t have to apologize for being who I am?

If I made a mistake in all of this it was being to open to the possibilities of this world, of being too caring, too willing to give and receive love.  I will not apologize for my mistakes here anymore.  I will try and try to learn and grow and to still be that person, to be open to the possibilities the world offers, the good possibilities, even if the end result means another mistake to not be apologized for.

Hawthorn and I are back to being best friends which is to say hanging out, talking more openly and having a much more clearly defined only friends boundary.  I’m still upset about it.  I’m really trying to let it go and move on.  I’m not even sure why I’m so upset.  I mean, honestly he would have driven me crazy eventually.  I can see clearly all the reasons it wouldn’t work out between us in the long run.  And yet, I’m still really grieving over that relationship.  I’m not sure if starting to date again will help or not.  I’m trying really hard not to just sit a dwell on my own sorrow over the whole thing.

I signed up for online dating (again) and have been futzing with it for about a week.  I have been actively trying to convince myself otherwise, but really, I find it more upsetting than useful, so probably I’ll shut it down again.  I’ve conversed with some seemingly interesting people, I guess.  But I can’t even really get excited about going out with any of them  And it feels more like unpleasant work to keep a conversation going than anything else.

I guess meeting someone else is the right step in getting past the Hawthorn thing? Even if it is only a rebound thing?  I don’t know.  I feel like I dealt with the whole situation alright for most the week but today I find myself really weepy and upset about it again.  I guess that I made it through more the 20 minutes with the online dating thing is progress, but I still burst into tears every time Hawthorn vaguely suggests that he might interested in casually seeing someone else in the future. Two steps forward, one step back, maybe?

The worst part is that I feel so frustrated and stonewalled by my own inability to deal with this.  I really don’t want to cry any more.  I don’t want to feel rejected and hurt.  I want to move on.  I really am trying to let go of it.  I mean it seems like seven months should be a fair amount of time to heal myself, at least of this little bit of my problems.  It seems no one has advice for me beyond being more active, going out and meeting people.  And I am exercising a lot more, but I feel like I have enough energy(mentally and emotionally) to go to work, to manage my interactions with my family and to barely maintain my close long standing friendships.  The idea of going out more, socializing more, just seems like a huge burden.  But I don’t want to be stuck here alone with my problems.  The idea of finding something else to focus on, to think about, to be involved in is great but I just can’t seem to get there.  I kind of wish someone else would just take responsibility and tell me what to do.  Give me a task to deal with each day and hold me accountable to moving forward.  Though truthfully that seems like so much pressure that I would just crumble under it.

I need to remind myself that I have good days and bad days.  The bad days seem farther apart and less frequent.  I am progressing.  Today’s positivityWhat if I didn’t have to punish myself to get the lesson? I mean I’m pretty sure there’s enough sadness and suffering int he world without me making more for myself, right?  I will try and treat myself as kindly as I treat my friends when they are hurting.  I am not going to ask what is wrong with me, because nothing is wrong with me.  I cannot berate myself into feeling better.  I will not bring myself down more by being angry with myself for feeling hurt.  I will try to break the cycle of being hurt by things I can not control.

I feel yucky today.  It’s been a Monday for sure, already, even this early, and it’s hot here.  Like severe weather warning hot.  Ugh.  I have what feels like a blechy, blechy hangover.  I suspect it’s from crying so much in the last few days in the yucko heat.  Last Thursday morning Hawthorn told me he was in agreement with me that we should just be a friends (in regards to my boundary setting of the past few weeks) and that he was going to start seeing other people, cue me falling into a wretched puddle. It felt like, well it felt like when we first broke up.  I spent most of the weekend  crying, meditating, talking to a few friends and having some fairly intense exchanges with Hawthorn.  It’s all wound down now, or worn itself out, or I’ve worn myself out about it.  We seem to be basically where were before, good friends, no possibility of getting back together.  I’ve gotten maybe 3 of the 5 apologies I think he owes me.

I feel better about the level open communication we have.  I feel glad to have him as my friend.  I honestly do think us getting back together would be a terrible idea. And still the thought of him finding someone else knots my stomach and makes me want to choke on my own sadness.  I recognize that a lot that comes from my own issues and my perception of the situation: if he wants to be with someone else that means he broke up with me because I’m not good enough, not because he wasn’t ready for a relationship.   I’m trying really hard to let that go and make the space for both of us to move on.  It sucks still.

To that end this week I’m going to work as much as I can on these questions.  I was reaching the point that I felt like I needed to figure out what was behind my jealousy and what was making hold on to all the hurt from that relationship then the universe just slapped me in the face with it.  I guess maybe I need to speed up my emotional transformation or something.  So today is question 1:  I am enough, worthy and good.  I do not need to be fixed.  I am strong enough and smart enough for everything that faces me.  I will continue to work to heal my own wounds, but I am not those wounds, not defined by them and I did not get them because I deserved them.  They were an accident that I can recover from because I am worthy of feeling whole and healthy and good.

Work has become intense and hard and certainly stressful.  But it isn’t boring and it’s been really nice to have stress directed at problems that seem solvable.  I mean, it’s work, it’s not like any of it is surmountable there, even if I make a mistake it gets repaired and the task completed.  Much better than my personal life.

It does leave me exhausted.  I”m pretty sure I’ve watched more TV in the last couple weeks than in the last six months put together. I don’t feel guilty about it.  I was thinking yesterday that maybe it’s a year for me to heal myself from where I started.  So I’m six months in and maybe the rate of recovery has slowed, but it’s still steady.  And I’m getting better about forgiving myself.  About not pressing myself.  About giving myself time. And right now everything I have to give goes into work.  Which is good because I don’t have much else to think about.  Which is bad because I should probably have something additional to focus on.

I think I’m doing as good a job as I can of working, albeit slowly, through my problems.  Where I’m stuck right now is Hawthorn. I’ve made it clear to him that there is no future for us outside of friendship.  I think I’ve convinced myself of that as well. However, I’m still struggling with this sense of being abandoned.  I can’t seem to get past this jealousy that just eats at me when he seems to be making new friends and moving on with his life.  With this sense that I just wasn’t good enough.  Or that there’s something wrong with me that caused to me to make the decisions that led me to get so hurt.  And I feel like if I can just get past this, then I can really move on.  But even as I recognize, more clearly, what my current problem is, I’m not sure exactly what to do.  Let go of it.  Just let it go.  Still as always I know that’s the answer, but I never know how or what exactly that means.

Also I cried my eyes out watching a movie a couple days ago and realized about halfway through that I was just crying.  Just crying at the movie because it was sad.  Not so filled with my own misery.  I guess it’s been a month or more since I was crying almost every day.  Which means I feel better. I mean I still feel a vast internal emptiness, and a lack of sense of place in the world.  Like I haven’t yet found all the pieces of myself.  But the shell outside is definitely thinker and harder.  Becoming strong enough to keep all the pieces in once I locate them.

I feel like this journal has been a description of the path that’s gotten me here.  I actually sat down to read some back entries, but I can’t.  It’s like the path only goes forward and I can’t yet pause and look to see how far I’ve come.  I’ve just got to keep going.