i need to dance. yes. I will go home, tidy my room and dance.
So.. what has *actually* been happening in the last few days?
(there is a lot in here, but it’s a proper entry about ME)
IBM has lost its grip on me. I’m out of here next thursday. The day after I have my pilgramage up north to visit a rather interesting osteopath/psychologist. He is having a birthday party with lots of live music. Should be good.
Winchester and Mary
I took my bonus half-day off on wednesday. This was the result of my own efforts to stand up for myself on monday – and I used it for a mini-adventure to Winchester with Jon. Talking to a girl working on an out door noodle stand, I discovered a few good places to go. First we explored the Cathedral again (very old, very big, very impressive, very catholic) This time I found the Virgin Mary chapel, and was once again struck by her similarity with Kuan Yin, a chinese/buddhist figure of compassion. I always liked Mary, I think it’s a shame she was taken away from the rest of the denominations. The best part was the renditions of some original wall hangings, showing about 20 frames of images I can onlty describe as “Virgin-Mary-Action-Hero” basically Mary rescuing various bad and wayward people/priests at the last minute because they asked for help or had followed her. For example “wayward and corrupt priest falls off bridge and drowns in river, and a demon arrives to take away his soul, but mary turned up and saved him.” although they also had one where Mary instructs some builders how to use a ‘capstan’ and thereby improve their building skill for the cathedral.(!!) It was good fun, essentially she is the last vestige of any overt feminine aspects as far as I can make out, one of creaitvity and a figure of motherly compassion. I never quite got the same with Jesus during my catholic days, perhaps because he always felt a bit like the older brother who was better at everything than you are or could be. Mary doesn’t care if you pick your nose.
paddling in rivers and holding snails
We then went and walked for a while through very old, historical houses, and out into some “water meadows” to see fish jumping our of rivers as we walked under new-green trees. I paddled in a stream till my feet went too numb, climbed some trees, generally danced about a bit, and pondered aloud over this comment bylaochbran :
Buddhism is the path to the cessation of suffering. Taoism is the path to happiness. The Taoist accepts a certain degree of suffering, thereby enabling happiness.The cessation of suffering is not the only goal that has validity. Of course, if your experience is dominated by suffering, it is a sensible one.
The thing that is nice about Jon is that he is one of those very passive people that is just relaxing to spend time round. He doesn’t moan or complain or stress about anything really, which is refreshing. He also listens in exactly the right way that allows my thoughts to come out and expand like balloons, or bubbles, and it’s amazing that even though he probably doesn’t ‘get’ what I’m going on about or give me any kind of profound comment back, I’ve learnt a lot from just trying to express my views aloud. I love walking and musing aloud.
People don’t always want to be given answers, sometimes they just want the chance to talk their own answers into existance.
I was sitting on a stile right on the rivers edge when I picked up a couple of snails and put them on my hand. One was dark brown with creamy white spiral, and the other white with a brown spiral – they looked a lot like those chocolate sea-shells you can get. The last time I put snails on my hand I must have been about 10. After while they come out of their shell, eyes on those funny stalks, and start sliming about. Certain places really tickle.
At exactly this moment Josie called me. So I sat their with snails sliming rapidly down my arm with a phone in the other hand. Josie told me she had reserved tickets for a flight to Japan (July the 7th, because that feels like a good day) and all we had to do is pay for them the next day. wow!!
Japan and Gossip
So yes. Tickets now paid and I’m going to Japan. I am so incredibly scared and yet determined on this one. It is going to change me but I will survive it. Talk about setting myself up for a huge out-of-comfort-zone experience! I am really glad to be doing this trip with Josie.
Something else struck home recently was gossip, and what a horribly twisted thing it is. Also making up your opinion on someone. I’ve noticed how once people make up their mind on a person, everything that person subsequently does is filtered and distorted to match that image. So the worst thing you can do is to make up your mind on someone based upon comments given by someone else! Another part of this is being careful to base your opinion of who YOU are on how other people see you, or what role it is you are in their lives. I’ve realised that i need to bear these things in mind, and try not to implicitly accept descriptions of someone, especially when it comes to their personality and motives.
I have spent far too much of my life basing my opinions of myself and world around me on what other people say. Yes, it’s good to listen to other people but you do need to be careful. (and careful of your own judgements as well… I’ve reasoned myself into some very strange and incorrect theories on people.). The main thing is to forget your previous experience and convictions and try to simply observe what is infront of you *now*. It’s all about empathy again.
back to front boyfriend experience
With that in mind, here are some truths about Jon. You see despite everything that has been said and understood logically, a relationship of sorts has been developing and growing between us. When I, or anyone else looks at this from the outside, it is so very quick and easy to stick judgemental and cliche labels. “affair” “two-timing” “rebound” “thoughtless lust” “desirous attachment”. If only people were that simple.
One thing I will not say is that this has been wrong. It may have dissapointed Zak hideously. It may have lost respect of others. But the effect it has had on me has been one of profound healing and learning, and if anything it has allowed me to feel closer to zak than I’ve done before. Zak is still the only guy I’ve slept with, and the only person who I’ve ever totally lost boundary between, had a glimpse of pure empathy with, and fallen in love with against all rhyme or reason.
My time with Jon has helped me realise
– about the fantasy-lies and games of desire
– about how much work has to go into relationships and how actually i really couldn’t be bothered to start all over again. And how much I value what I have with Zak.
– to admitt out loud that love scares the shit out of me and that’s partly why I’ve been running from zak
– how to break out of a destructive behaviour pattern.
– about wearing masks, playing out games and generating false impressions.
– that there are many different kinds of love, probably as many as combinations of people. no one-and-only love just as no one-and-only answer.
– to discover that I should admitt damage when damage happens. Admitt it and let it go. I was damaged about 7 years ago now : not unexpected given my naiviety, curiousity and lack of self-value, but I denied it and pushed it down very far where it’s been festering ever since, till the last couple of years when piece by piece i’ve been extracting it. Jon, without even meaning to, has helped me to remove some of that rotteness.
Because you see, all my experience with guys has consisted of, them doing stuff to me that I didn’t want. Or falling into a difficult love with Zak and a challenging relationship that has had problems of some kind since the word go. What I’ve had with Jon has been nice. Not amazing, not even lasting, but just nice. With Jon I was always in control, it has been a lovely game, something to add sparkle and a bit of human contact, some time to relax, and I think we both know that’s all it ever was going to be. It’s been the short-term low-key boyfriend experience I always imagined – flirting, going out on dates, kissing in the car, no commitment, nothing very major, very teenage-movie. I love what I have with Zak, and how things started with him, but I was oh-so damaged then, and messed up, and also what I found with Zak is something I didn’t WANT to find till I was 25, or 30, or old enough to deal with it properly.
This probably sounds really awful, or selfish, or something. maybe it is. But, in Jon, I found what I always thought a boyfriend would/should be like, before my opinion was crunched up and broken and mangled. Boyfriends are not about lying there in terrified fear, pinned down to a bed and being played with like some kind of sex toy. Boyfriends are not about leaving yourself open to be invaded and trampled and then left for nothing. Boyfriends are not about lies to get you naked in a bed. I have seen that maybe my original view, that boyfriends are men, that should be respectful and not pushy, that care for you without being possesive, was not so far fetched; that this kind of person does really exist. My world view has changed for the better; or perhaps just reset to normal.
It has been good for me, and challenging for me, to experience all this. I think… I have had enough of relationship messing about now. I now have a better idea of what it’s all about.
It is time to focus back on myself , and my life. I’m also ready to give what I have with Zak the chance it deserves…paradoxically the fact I know its not the only love, the ” one true love”, because there is no such thing, takes off some pressure and helps me see for what is really there, and value what we have rather than looking for something more. First though, it’s 3 or 4 months of no real contact at all while I’m in Japan. I expect to find this a bit refreshing but mostly very difficult. But: I need to know that I don’t need him to be able to love him (if that makes sense at all).
(that is not quite the dodgy rationalisation it sounds. I can see the other truths here. Like, this whole Jon thing only started because one day I was drunk,horny, in a self-destruct mood and very lonely. But he contained a whole pile of unexpectedness. I can remember joking with Josie, about ‘unravelling the introvert’ to find nothing there, but rather, there is a lot of tenderness and wonder-at-the-world in Jon.
And also, there was one moment which was the first time ever I really thought there was a good chance zak would give up on me. That scared me in a big way. I was (still am) treading a fine line here and should be careful i suppose.
I know I’ve been less than ideal.)
I’ve been connecting with various long distant friends, and drawing more lately, and all these things make me happy. Mostly I am feeling full of a nervous energy over the realitiy of the Japan trip. Relationship with parents has been improving as I have learnt how to untangle myself slowly from their expectations and prejudices. I have remembered the value in my academic skills but also the need to balance them out with fun and outdoors. I’ve realised how far I’ve come and how much I have to learn still. Particulalry, it’s getting to a time where I need to start working on focus, and commitment, and not being scared of long term plans.
I also want to stop using the past or imagine neuroses as ‘excuses’ for behaviour. Take some responsibility. I want to develop some personal integrity, I just hope its not too late.
As of next week, after a year of procrastination and over indulgance on LJ, of flapping about indecisevly and being flakey, it will be time to start getting focused. And finally, I have realised that I am not doing this for praise, or for love, or profit, or even because I have to. I’m doing it because I can, and I want to see what happens.
And that is my “now”.
“There’s so many things that we miss in our everyday lives
We’re so busy hustling, bustling chasing far away dreams
We forget the little things
Like blue skies, green eyes and our babies growing
Like rainbows, fresh snow and the smell of summer
We forget to live
Give us eyes like children so we live each day as others
We’re so sure we know so much that we forget to listen
Then we wander freckle faced
Like cheep thrills bad spill and constant consumption
Like TV, CDs and cars that speak our names
We forget to live”
– “Little things” by Lamb