But Take Your Time, Think A Lot

I made that phone call and will be meeting with that person later this week. I’m terrified, but I feel a lot better after talking it over with Uncle. He really put me at ease and made me laugh.  Said he’d even write me a recommendation letter so that maybe my meeting will go easier.

 

… I’m gonna miss him. I have spent a year talking with him and learning how to be honest with others. We spent a lot of time together talking, just talking. It wasn’t me doing all the talking either. We kept things in a give and take sort of flow. Both of us learned how to be more honest and genuine. It’s been interesting thinking about all the different ways we have gotten to know one another. Thinking about it and just listening to how he talked about them made me feel just, special and privileged. Great ego stroke for me. No, it just really made me feel good because I helped him as much as he helped me. If I came up on Fridays, when I could get out of work early, he would make sure to make me feel welcomed to join the game they would play every Friday. I wouldn’t feel like an outsider and I was able to laugh and exist. Watching him and the others on those days was uplifting. I think that’s when he would smile the most because he liked to get competitive and stoke the fires of some people who are even more competitive.

 

One of the biggest things Uncle did for me was validate me and my identity every chance he could. He always made sure, once I told him, to make sure my pronouns were right and he openly used them. If he didn’t use masculine, which was rare, he would not use femme ones. I was so proud that he worked so hard to make sure he got everything right. Not just with me, but with others. He wanted to be considerate and making sure he wasn’t making someone uncomfortable. I’m just another fella to him and that he sees me that way, does more for me than anything else.  I am able to feel comfortable in my skin around him. I don’t police everything I do around him. I exist.

 

I hadn’t thought about it, but I’ve kind of been using him as one of my male role models as I try to learn how exist within that masculine sphere. Like when crossing streets, just stand tall and walk like a man; don’t run, just walk. Which is something he’s told me in just a random conversation.  He’s one of the few male role models that I can be honest with my identity about. Others, they can be great influences, but I can’t let them know that. I could with Uncle. Welp, those were feelings I didn’t need to have today.

 

I was able to be honest. I was able to be genuine and raw. It’s not something I do a lot of, but I worked very hard to do it. He joked that at the beginning of our talks I was much more of a  grumpy guy and trying to put some form of a mask on. However,  that mellowed out and we both stopped putting up the masks we had on for others.

 

I do feel better about talking to the person I’ve been terrified of for a month now. I’m still scared and anxious, but I feel a little better. I swear if they have gotten a ‘recommendation letter’ from Uncle I’m just going to laugh for days. I could see it happening. Which is what makes it more ridiculous and makes me wish he’d do it.  I am worried about actually being the adult and working on a repair of the breach that exists. It’s very unknown territory for me and I am unsure if my map is correct for navigating it.

 

I am not allowed to take any of my anxiety meds before that meeting either, so when I see old white dude following it and I’m losing my mind, it’s his fault. But the timing is great since that is supposed to be at 2PM and I see the crazy man at 4PM.

 

I am currently trying to get my head wrapped around my bullet points for this talk, which was my assignment for the week beyond making my phone call. I’m just not allowed to attempt to plan the last part because I can’t know how the other side will respond.
..it isn’t going to be an easy week.

It’s Hard, But It’s Harder to Ignore It

I’ve written this over the past week, so it’s fragmented and messy.. And I don’t feel like really fixing it up to make a lot more sense.

 

I got to see Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 last week when it opened. I rarely go on opening night, but I had the chance so I went. I love Marvel movies. And these in particular, Vol 1 and 2 have amazing soundtracks. I know the majority of the songs because that’s what I heard growing up. That’s all my parents of origin listened to. I used to be very good at knowing songs and artists within the first couple bars of a song. I’m not as good now, but I’m getting better again.

 

So, the Cat Stevens song “Father and Son” is on this soundtrack. So, I’ve been fighting with various songs from the film getting very much stuck in my head (looking at you ‘Brandy’) so I’ve been trying to get them out. I listened to “Father and Son” and that’s dropped me into a rabbit hole I forgot existed.

 

“If You Want to Sing Out, Sing Out” is a song I forgot existed. I wish I hadn’t, because it makes me feel a little better inside. I can do whatever I want. I can be me, I can say yes, I can say no. Which is what I need to focus on a little more. I am not held by strings to my family of origin, who have imposed upon me their thoughts and feelings for years. I am able to be who I am, just as I am. Even though I’ve been having issues with that and will continue to do so while I learn and heal.

 

As I work my way through the Cat Stevens songs I know, I’m trying to build up courage.

 

“Wild World,” “Peace Train,” and “Morning has Broken.” All songs I know. All songs I have heard before. They drop me into a different kind of mindscape. Music has always done that for me. I can do anything within music. I can find you music for whatever you so desire. I like obscure, I like mainstream, I like old, and I like new. I like what touches me. I like what makes me think. I like what makes me get lost.


And courage I did build. I somehow, still not sure how, I did manage to send off a bid via email Tuesday afternoon. I asked if we could talk. Course, following that, anytime my email notification would go off, I would practically jump out of my skin.

 

…but I did get a response.

 

I got one in under two hours. It told me to get in touch with them in a couple days and we shall see what the possibilities are.

 

I knew the Old White Dude was going to have a field day with me Thursday. Because  I need to figure out how I would even talk to them. Part of me is glad to get a positive response, but another part of me wanted a negative response because then I wouldn’t have to do this next portion. I wouldn’t have to talk to them, but now I do. I have no idea how to do this. Which causes more panic.  And so I just went into my appointment [after a really, really stressful day] and it was… rough. It was difficult and made me a little more anxious. However, I do feel a little better because I can somewhat see the bullet points I want to make. The ones I need to make.

 

I’m terrified. I honestly am. I hate admitting that.

 

I need to do this. This has fucked me up for a month. It’s been taking one hell of a toll on my mental health and it keeps bleeding into things. To make it worse, I’ve been keeping it so hidden. I keep dancing around the subject. I don’t get into it. I deflect, I sidestep, and then distract.

 

I was supposed to meet up with someone after my old white dude appointment last night. Went to where we were going to meet and there was a note saying we’d need to reschedule. I totally get it and that’s honestly not a problem with me at all. There’s a lot of stuff going on for a lot of people right now, this is never an easy time of year. I will admit though, I may have just sat right the hell down and practically cried because it had been that kind of day. It was just, so very overwhelming and I couldn’t get it to stop. Made me feel like something was wrong with me, but I know it was just everything crashing at once. I had taken one of my anxiety meds earlier in the day, but I didn’t take another later so just the entire day crashed at once.

 

….so I went off to the pub because I worked out in my brain all the different things I could do and once the ‘good’ things didn’t work I knew I needed to list the ‘bad’ things. Beer and Pie fixes a lot of things as long as I don’t overdo the first part.

 

It let me calm down and settle for a bit. Thankfully I am usually able to cut myself off when I need to and before I go way too far. Which, I was able to do last night. I needed to slow my brain down and it worked. I try not to do it that way too often and I am getting better at other options. I also always love that particular drinking hole because I know I get to be me there, no matter what. It’s safe. Because it’s safe, I’m better at being responsible with myself.
I need to go make a phone call. I need to do it sober like the old white dude said. This is what I get for joking about being not sober in some way, I get legit told that I have to be sober because that makes it honest.

 

Damnit.

Wake Up; Check Damage Report

Each day is becoming more and more of waking up and looking for a damage report. Like, it is so hard some days to get dressed and go to work and try to make the world, or at least the community, a better place. This isn’t the kind of world I wanted to live in, but it’s the one I’m stuck in. Little by little I suppose is the only way to make it nowadays.


So I get up. I go to work. I do my job and work to improve people’s lives.

 

While there I also work to challenge people’s perceptions of various “groups” that I’m part of. I’m just like everyone else, but I do belong to various minority groups. I’m queer. I’m trans. I’ve got mental health issues. I’m not the face most people think of for any of those groups, though I “look” queerer and queerer each and every day. I’m just being myself. My nerdy self that I’ve always been.

 

I made a deal with myself that I was going to be more open in general this year. Especially with the fallout of how the election went in 2016. We need people to stand up and speak out. We need to be able to show people ourselves in a way that could challenge the bias they had. We need to create a world where it is safe to be who we really are. That might mean starting small. Looking at local spaces in a community where it is okay to just be. To just exist. That might mean that we need to look at our local library, because most of them don’t get a lot of money, and see how we can help. Ask what they want, what they need, what they wish they could do. I read all the time, so I am buying cheap books in good condition, reading them, and donating them. Others need knowledge too. Others need entertainment. Kids need to find things that can help them find their passions.

 

We need to help one another. Only as one can we survive.

 

But that’s scary too.

 

This whole being honest and open really, really sucks. I want to be able to be myself. But, as it keeps being at the moment… that’s not really a possibility in some of the spaces I exist in.

 

But I have to keep trying. It’s not like I can cease to exist, though there are days when I would still like to cease. I’m here and that’s where I’m at. I wake up, I take my meds, I go to therapy every week and I am trying my damnedest to be who I am without fear.
…and then I look at the current state of the country, and I fear for what the next day may bring.

A Dark World Aches for a Splash of the Sun

It has been a bit of time since I sat down and attempted to put words on a page about what I think and feel. It’s not been an easy time. I am still exceptionally hurt and sadly I think it’s going to fall to me to give a bid to the other party. I don’t want this breach to continue. I need to know if it can be fixed or if I should work on making the hurt inside me less painful.

 

I was at an event with the other half of this whole thing and I attempted to pretend things were fine. I was hoping they would be the one to put forth the bid, the whole “We need to talk” conversation. Just the bid. I did my best to just, exist and keep it from everyone else. I don’t know how well I did with most of the group, but I know I felt the ice. I felt it creeping in and around me. No conversation, no real eye contact.

 

So, with that in mind I have new homework this week from my old white dude. In this relationship with the breach, I am not the one who holds the majority of the power because it’s not a relationship between equals.  It never has been. I’m the more vulnerable one here and now I have to be even more and I have to put forth the bid. I have to find this courage to ask this person, “Can we talk?” I don’t want to, because it scares me and I’m super uncomfortable. I don’t know how to do relationship repair. I have figured it out with my spouse, but I do not have the tools to do it with others. I’m terrified. I’m afraid on so many levels, because what if it goes horribly wrong? What if this relationship is only important to one side? It’s been such a formative relationship for me, that the idea of it being broken and gone is crushing. I am so lost.

 

Something that kind of compounds all of this hurt, is that when I had the last conversation with this person, I am unsure and could be wrong… but I felt misgendered. It could be just how my brain was reacting and hearing as it completely shut down. My brain keeps circling back and trying to focus on that which isn’t helping me at all.

 

I haven’t actually told many people about the breach at all. It’s not something that needs to be mentioned. I told my old white dude because I tell him everything and this is really fucking me up. I ended up telling, let’s call him Uncle to give him a name, because he noticed that something wasn’t right one of the times I saw him. I’ve been making an effort this past year to be more honest and when I could tell he wasn’t letting me get away with it… I told him. I think it was a lot harder to tell Uncle rather than Old White Dude because he’s seen a lot and knows a lot, more than he lets on usually. I’ve allowed myself to be very vulnerable with him and I am very glad I have. Our relationship isn’t one of peers per say, but it’s a lot closer to a more even keel. We both give and take. I cherish the talks I’ve had with him and I do know for a fact that he’s enjoyed them as well. I know because he told me and I’m not used to knowing that sort of thing.

 

It’s been a very, very hard couple weeks in some ways and that’s not even taking on what’s going on in the world. This is just what’s in my own bubble. I am mentally stable at the moment, but I am not “better” and I might never be entirely “okay,” but currently I am stable. I am trying to be more and more open about various parts because if not me, then who? It’s okay to have mental health issues. It happens to more than we think, but we always hide it in the shadows. That’s not helpful. Until I started talking, it made me feel so much more alone than I already felt.

So I guess I’m going to try and find this courage I supposedly have and I’m going to attempt a bid. I’m afraid of what the answer might be, but I am at least going to try and put the bid out there. What the other half does with it is beyond me, but I need to put it out there. 

I will not lie. I am afraid. I am being honest and I am afraid that if it goes bad, I won’t be very good at all. It’s scary to me and I hate to admit I am afraid or scared or anything like that. But I am. I am very scared.