Monday, February 6, 2012

Mah Brain

I had a conversation with a friend this weekend about the state of my consciousness, and how I need to work on bridging the gap between what's going on with my physical self (like, eating pizza and talking with a friend) and my nonphysical mental processes (like, my brain kind of sitting twenty feet behind me, assessing the situation and making observations similar to a vindictive narrator). I've mostly maintained that living in the present tense and enjoying situations as they unfold takes a certain talent for shutting off one's thoughts, which was why I believe I've never enjoyed small moments as much as other people might. The remedy for this, of course, has always been drinking. But sometimes I just don't wanna!

Then the friend suggested that the only way for a person like me to truly live in the moment, and not constantly worry and project and assess and panic, is to commit myself to really coming to terms with who I am as a person, and to find comfort and a sense of strong identity in all the quirks and unsavory bits of character that are themselves the very motivations for my frequent moments of self loathing. Now, I'd heard the first chunk of that piece of advice several times before, but the section on viewing a lot of the things I *don't* like and want to change as simply unchangeable aspects of myself that should be embraced for their role in defining my character was staggering. This friend is several years older than myself, and hugely intelligent, and also majored in philosophy before law school, so I think listening to what he has to say and really trying to apply it might be worthwhile. He put it this way: "you're here and you're going to live your life, and one day you'll be dead, and you're all you're ever going to truly have in between, so why would you put yourself through unnecessary grief if you could love yourself completely and be that much more fulfilled?"

But hold on! Isn't this exactly what happened when I came out to everyone three years ago? If so, why is it still just as relevant today? How did I learn so valuable a lesson the first time around and then *not* continue to apply it?

If, in the past, I was able to proclaim something as then-difficult as my homosexuality and stick with its consequences, I'd like to think myself capable of similar feats in the present. Personal growth is tricky, and I get restless when I don't know from which angle I should approach it, but this weekend's conversation was a much-needed kick in the pants. So I suppose the purpose of this whole post is to have it in writing somewhere that I'm going to work hard to stop doing anything that remotely resembles apologizing for any actions/words/behaviors that emanate from my being unless an apology is truly in order. And maybe if I stop doing that then I'll stop feeling the need to analyze every situation for reasons to apologize. And then maybe if I analyze less then I'll be more capable of enjoying the present as the person I am. And then this whole post will be irrelevant! And I'll be happy. Or at least happier. Either way, I'm counting it a win.

And I should also be clear that I'm not sitting around everyday moaning and groaning and wishing for everything to be different. On the contrary, I'm usually whistling. I also realize this isn't the most exciting shit to write about in a blog setting, but I feel these are questions and (pseudo) answers that a lot of people can make use of, even if they've been asked and answered before. Sometimes we just need people to remind us that doing nothing but spinning our wheels is a surefire way to get nowhere. And I would much rather end up somewhere. Starting today.

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