Monday, April 4, 2011

to be enough

Let That Be Enough  
New Way To Be Human  

I had a dream last night. I was in a lot of white space. The whiteness was blinding and in the middle of it all, I was falling in sweet slow motion. You could see the fear in my face. My eyes were wide in panic, my arms flailing for something to hold on to. But then I realized what was happening. I realized I was free. There was nothing keeping me, no one watching me and it felt really nice.

I started to laugh. It was quiet at first but then it grew in volume until I filled the entire white space in shameless, high-pitched laughter. I was still falling. I still didn’t know what was below me. I just didn’t care. For once, I was alone and it felt so good.

Nothing like falling to make you feel so free. But was I really falling or did I somehow learn to float? Was I even floating or did I learn to fly?


I have this friend who lived with a man for three years. Together, they found a unique happiness most of us call love. They talked about families, of houses, of lives being spent together. They were so in love with each other until one day, it all stopped.

He found someone else. She was in pieces for a long time. It was hard to talk to her without her breaking into tears every now and then. One day, she wiped her tears and told me it didn’t hurt anymore. She says it felt like her heart was broken into too many pieces and there was nothing, just a ringing sound like a bomb had just exploded. She couldn’t hear anything. She couldn’t feel anything. She was numb.

She had every right in the world to feel that way, that much I understood. When someone is happy for so long and then suddenly, the thing that makes them happy is taken away from them, the body finds ways to protect itself. Perhaps it goes into a little cocoon, hence the numbness.

I knew exactly what she meant even though we were on opposite sides of the pole. For years, I’ve cultivated my sadness. For years, I’ve written about every failure, every bruise and every tear. Late last year, it seemed like the universe suddenly shifted. I got promoted*, I fell in love*, this blog won an award*. It seemed like everything was supposedly falling into place. In the chaos of it all, I dared to call myself happy. But when all the pieces settled and the dust was shaken off, I realized I wasn’t. I wasn’t sad anymore but I wasn’t happy either. I was numb.

I was always just waiting for that day that everything would be reclaimed. I was waiting for a fuck-up at work big enough to get me fired. I was waiting for A to leave. I was always waiting for the other shoe to drop. I’m still waiting, I suppose, even though my verb tenses seem to say otherwise. One day, the feeling became too big and too heavy to handle by myself. I decided to talk to an old friend.

I talked to my mirror. He always understood when my own mind can’t process things. I told him about my ambivalence, the constant ringing sound in my ear, the dream I had, my friend who became numb. And after everything he said, it seems I finally understood.

For years, you’ve wanted nothing but for people to love you. You worked hard for your boss to love you enough to promote you. You’ve played the good son so your family can stop treating you like a stranger. You waited patiently for the one who you imagined would love you. But you never really understood what all that meant.

Could it be I was stuck in a movie? Did I think I would get a Hollywood ending?

You wanted everyone to love you. Maybe on some level, you hoped that when they finally do, you’d finally start to love yourself. Surprise, surprise. Everyone loves you now. Why can’t you do the same? Why do you cry when no one is watching? Why do you dream of white space? Why do you secretly wish to disappear?

Maybe I don’t think I deserve any of it. Maybe it’s just not possible to get it all. Or maybe, just maybe, some people do not know how to be happy. Maybe I’m one of them.

For years, you thought you needed to be enough for all the people in your life. Now that you are, perhaps it’s time to be enough for yourself.

Last night, I confided in A’s arms. I tried to tell him everything. I told him about my unhappiness. I told him how it wasn’t his fault and that there are just some ghosts who are a part of me and cannot be expelled. I told him how I felt defeated even though when I was younger, I wanted nothing but to be where I am now. I told him about how I didn’t feel I deserved to be his. I told him about my thoughts of flight and how my mind and my heart are in constant battle. I told him how I was afraid I was clinically depressed and how when I finally became honest to myself, I only realized that nothing can make me happy; not when I’m not happy with who I am.

He listened patiently, without judgment or prejudice. I knew it hurt him too but he did his best to understand his crazy boyfriend. When he fell asleep, I put my hand on his chest. I wanted to count the beats and to know how many of them were for me. As he lay there sleeping, I whispered a simple wish.

Let me know that you hear me.
Let me know your touch.
Let me know that you love me.
Let that be enough.

B4N. As I look at my archives, I realize I haven’t written anything real in a long time. It feels like I’ve lost my purpose, my reason for logging into Blogger week after week. I started this blog because I wanted a means to express myself. Why then does it feel like I’ve stifled my own voice?

My life’s a little fucked up right now. There are things I need to discover, feelings and ghosts I need to deal with and so I’m taking a little break from blogging. It’s a decision I made with a heavy heart but one I know I need if I hope to return to some semblance of normalcy. I’ll be back faster than you can say not-another-blog-hiatus or didn’t-he-do-this-last-year? Hopefully, by that time, I’ll have found the real reason for my unhappiness. To friends, followers, lurkers old and new, wish me luck as I venture into a new quest of self-discovery.