Sat, 18 Oct 2003

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Like the author of Incidental Findings, I am often seized by doom and gloom, by full-blown major depressive disorder, by neurovegetative signs. Polyphagia, insomnia, hypersomnia, emotional incontinence, fatigue, anxiety. You name it, I get it.

So I am getting help. But that is neither here nor there.

While I often pine for companionship, I have slowly come to grips with the finite probability that I will be alone for the rest of my life (read: single). While this causes some untold amount of trepidation, like I said, if a human being has to endure anything long enough, he or she will get used to it. Or die from it. But, in the end, everything is endurable.

One of the more problematic moments is when one of my relatives asks me about my (non-existent) love life. While I hem and haw and try to make excuses for why I haven't met anyone (And this is not entirely not true. I have met women. They just aren't interested in me. At least not in that way. But that is another story entirely), it kind of focuses my grief.

It makes me ponder the fact that, despite all the platitudes in the world that I can heap upon my singular existence, the fact of the matter is that it x-es me out of the great Circle of Life. To put it scientifically, my genes are being selected against by Darwin's inexorable forces.

I am not fit, evolutionarily speaking. (I am not fit, just plain medically speaking as well, but we'll defer that discussion as well.)

For those of you who have had the luck to never experience such existentially angstful moments, let me tell you, it is very depressing.

I am proud to say that I bounced back from it rather quickly. It may have taken about an hour of brooding and sulking, but in due time I had recovered to my typical emotional haze.

Yep. This days, usually, I don't feel a thing.

I'd like to coin a term: limbic neuropathy. My cortex has lost touch with my limbic system, and I can no longer emote properly.

Although I must say, haze is much preferrable to suicidal depression.

I'll take what I can get.

But back to my point: what I realize is that it is impossible to better yourself by adhering to negative standards. You have to have a positive plan. In other words, it's counterproductive to set rules based on "DON'T." It is, instead, important to establish rules based on "DO."

Case in point: the most success with smoking cessation I've seen is not when people force themselves NOT to smoke. This is a self-defeating proposition. The successful ones instead make plans for what they want to do. Mostly, this means increased physical fitness: working out more, eating healthier, etc., etc. Invariably, this causes people to want to stop smoking. After all, if you're trying to get into shape, smoking really makes it hard to work out. It becomes sheer expediency at this point, because you are aiming for something. To get what you want, you have to know what you want. It's almost worthless to only know what you don't want.

So, at least at this stage in my life, I know that I don't need to be not-single. I'm not saying that I wouldn't jump at the opportunity if it came my way, but, really, what are the chances of that happening? So I know what I don't want, at least right now.

But, as I've said, the problem is I kind of don't know what I do want. Yes, there is family. Yes, there are friendships. But to obtain that sense of home. Of belonging somewhere. Well, I don't know how to get from Point A to Point B, especially since Point B is so ill-defined.

Even thinking back to my first memories as a child, I really can't remember anytime that I felt safe and protected. The real world was always intruding. I do remember feeling alone a lot. There is no idyllic place in the back of my mind where I can retreat when the world is threatening to swallow me whole.

Honestly, it took me a while to figure out times I've been happy besides the time God Himself pimp-slapped me and I felt like I had almost died out in the ocean. (It was exhilariting though. Again, however, this is surely another sign of depression.) But then it comes to me in gasps and spurts. The random moments that accumulate that make me think of home. The times that my brother and my sister have come to visit me in Chicago. (Whenever I pass the gas station where Clark St. and La Salle meet, I think of that tail end of March 2001.) Just random moments, really.

Or that trip to Seattle with B, A, and J. And the time they came to visit me for my birthday and we went down to San Diego to watch a play adaptation of Jessica Hagedorn's Dogeaters.

And then my trip to NYC when J graduated.

Then that long and lazy summer when B came to visit me in Chicago and all we did was drink beer and smoke cigarettes. (And I still remember that dance with the pretty girl at the hick bar, even though it didn't mean anything at all.)

It's bittersweet, though, isn't it? I feel like I don't really appreciate these moments until all they are are memories.

Once again, it reaffirms my resolution to think of the here and now.

No day but today.

10:29:59 18 Oct 2003 > /soul > permalink > 2 comments

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