August 29, 2014 § Leave a comment
It’s become apparent to me that I need a hobby.
I need something to do with my free time. Something that I can look forward to during work or idle time or when life gets hard. I need something to take up that lonely space of time that gives our minds the opportunity to wander into the dark corners of our conscience and dwell on depressing realities.
In other words, I need a distraction from thoughts of my impending mortality.
I used to have a lot of hobbies and interests. I used be passionate about sports, reading, politics, and travel. Now it seems I’ve lost whatever passion I had for any of those things. I’ve become decreasingly interested in any sports and I find them increasingly jingoistic and juvenile. I’ve almost completely lost the urge to read anything. I’ve become terribly jaded by world politics (which almost anyone will if they pay close enough attention for long enough) and I find myself in a situation (both professionally and personally) where travel is no longer a reasonable possibility.
I’ve thought about hiking and the outdoors. North Carolina has a lot of beautiful places to hike, kayak, or otherwise explore. But it seems I’ve been so consumed with work all the time (working off shifts and rarely having weekends) that I never have the opportunity to do those things.
I just moved in with Katie and I’ve realized that I use projects around the house as a sort of distraction. The electrical outlets need replaced? I can handle that. The wallpaper needs removed? Got it. The new mirror needs put together? Got that too.
I’ve essentially been spending all of my days alone (while Katie works and I should be sleeping) doing stuff around the house. Part of it’s because I feel invested in this house. I’ve been here since she first moved in. I’ve been helping with a ton of things. Maybe this is taking things too far but I feel like this house is mine as well — perhaps not legally but at least emotionally. However I’ve begun to notice that my little projects around the house have taken on a new and perhaps unhealthy form. They have become a distraction in the same way a hobby might. Instead of just doing things because I want to get them done, I’ve been doing them to keep my mind from drifting off into unhealthy territory.
I’ve been thinking about these things for a while. And yes, it has occurred to me that a lot of what I’m saying sounds like the beginning signs of depression. Given my family history with this issue it has me a bit concerned. However I’m confident that this is just a phase and nothing serious will come of this. Once Katie and I are completely moved into the new house and I’m no longer in this weird limbo stage I’m sure things will start to get better.
It would also help if I could find a job that didn’t require me to stay up all night and gave me weekends off. I’d honestly be willing to take a $20K pay cut if I could find a job that gave me normal working hours. Please? Anyone?
Until next time..
August 28, 2014 § Leave a comment
I’d like to think that I’m a very caring person. Well at least I can be. When I reach the point of actually caring about someone I care for them deeply. As a rule, I always try to cater to those I care about. That is to say I do everything that I can to make that person happy. So far in my life I’ve met only two people who have evoked the level of trust, understanding, and love necessary for me to reach that point. Both were female and neither were family members. But I digress.
Anyway, in my search to find ways to make those that I care about happy I’ve come to realize that there’s something to be said about conversation. Yes, yes. I’ve heard all the cliches about communication being key to any healthy relationship (which it is) but there’s some aspects to that which deserve to be hashed out a bit. In fact, there’s a certain conversation tactic that I’ve found incredibly useful in bringing happiness to the people I care for. In fact, I find that it’s a useful conversation tactic even if you’re dealing with acquaintances, distant family members, or any other category of human who you don’t care much for. It’s a simple, straightforward and fool proof way to make your partner, friend, or co worker feel comfortable. So what is it?
Yup. Silence. Sometimes it’s best to just sit back, shut up, and let the other person talk. I’ve noticed that it brings great joy to people to just be able to vent. You can nod your head to signify that you’re listening. Sometimes it’s even okay to ask leading questions that you can tell the other person wants you to ask so that the conversation can go in the direction that they want. The basic rule is to just let go of control and give the other person carte blanche to discuss whatever it is that’s on their mind.
Some might suggest that this is a strictly male/female dynamic. That females prefer a man who simply shuts up and agrees with them. In fact, I’ve found that both sexes feed off silence. If there’s something someone wants to talk about, he or she cares more about that topic than whatever it is that’s on your mind. It has nothing to do with gender. It has everything to do with the self centered nature of the human mind.
Which brings me to my last point. If you’re reading this blog then it’s probably safe to assume that you’re an adult human being. Unfortunately, none of us are perfect (except you, of course). We all like to have the spot like on us and we all feel that our own issues are the most important. That’s why it can be such a challenge to be the listener. But fuck it, try it anyway. Your relationships will be much healthier if you just sit back and shut up every once in a while. God knows we all wish you would anyhow.
August 27, 2014 § Leave a comment
I feel more at ease with my thoughts and my mind than I ever have before.
This is due entirely to finding someone who loves me for me. She understands who I am and not only accepts that, she embraces it and loves me more because of it. The moment I met her I knew she was different. Very different. She made me feel in a way which no one had ever made me feel.
The more I’ve gotten to know her, the more I realize that she was that missing piece to the puzzle that kept me up at night. She was the reason I always felt “off”. She was the reason I felt the need to travel the world. She was the reason I was never content with staying in one place. She was the reason I left home. I was looking for something. I thought it was a place. Or maybe a feeling. Or maybe even a state of mind. I was wrong. It was a person I was searching for all along. It was her. She’ll never know how much I truly love her or how much she means to me. She will likely never read this. But if she ever does, whatever state of mind she finds herself in she should be at peace knowing that she single handedly changed someone else’s life for the better.
Well she’s on her way home from work now so I’m going to go. More on this great change in my life soon.
August 18, 2014 § Leave a comment
I’ve had the sneaking suspicion that my life was about to go through some serious changes for quite some time now. I didn’t know what form these changes would manifest themselves as but somewhere deep in my soul I could feel the ripples of an impending tidal wave of change headed toward my corner of the cosmic pool.
To make a long story short, those changes have occurred over the course of this summer and while all of them were unexpected, the bulk of them were my own doing. Whether you choose to believe in destiny or free will (your guess is as good as mine if either exists) you have to take a step back and appreciate those (seemingly) tumultuous stages of your life like this one. From the age of 16 to 23 I was pretty damn sure about certain aspects of my life. I thought that I had decided on at least one facet of my life and that my decision was final. Silly me. Never doubt the human mind’s ability to change direction. There is no such thing as “thought/feeling inertia”. Just because you’ve kept an aspect of your life constant for a prolonged period of time doesn’t mean it has enough momentum to survive the inevitable changes of heart that life casually stirs up — especially in that confusing decade of life that takes place between the ages of 19 and 30.
So here I am. 24 years old and wondering where the hell I’ll be at age 30. Will I be married? Will I have children? Where will I live? Will I be alone?
I’d like to think that I know the answer to those questions. I’d like to believe that if the feelings I’ve experienced over the past few months were strong enough for me to demolish everything I’d previously known and rebuild then they must be strong enough to weather the storms that lie ahead. The truth is that if I’ve learned anything from this summer it’s that nothing is for certain. You can’t control what others will do to you. Every decision you make in life is in some way shaped by the actions of others. In short, the decisions we make (and thus our future) are affected by the actions of those around us (especially those closest to us).
However, I’ve learned something else that helps me cope with this somewhat sobering realization: you can’t be motivated by fear. You must make decisions because it’s what you want and nothing else. True, we are ultimately at the mercy of those around us — you can be hurt, misled, lied to, cheated on, etc. And there is no question that some of these things will happen to you in varying degrees. But it’s best to just accept this and enjoy life for what it is.The sooner I come to terms with this reality the better. I’ll be honest, sometimes it’s hard. I’m not a jealous person, but trust can be fickle thing when past experiences left a bad taste in your mouth.
My mentality moving forward is simple: embrace the change, and be true to yourself. I’m at this awkward stage in my life where I’m technically an adult but I’m not exactly sure who I am or what I want out of life. Luckily, I’ve found someone who understands me (often better than I understand myself..) and they love me enough to be patient while I figure myself out. I love this person deeply and I’ve put every ounce of trust that I have into them. I’ve never felt about anyone the way I feel about this person. Could they break my heart? Sure, anything is possible. And I’d be the first to admit that it would tear me apart if that happened. Regardless, I can not live in fear of the unknown.
Because I’ve really put myself out on a limb and made myself about as vulnerable as one could be after being in a relationship for less than three months, let me leave a simple note to my future self which may come in handy on a rainy day(which hopefully never comes):
No one is worth ending your life over.