I suppose now is the best time to say this from the heart. Above anything else, I am a very real person. I have thoughts and ideas. I have dreams and desires. I have aches and pains, both emotionally, and sometimes physically. I have doubts, fears, worries and concerns. I have all the above that would come with living a normal, everyday crazy life.
I am real. I have flesh and bone. I have the vital organs that keep me alive. I have a thought process that has been growing since birth. I learn as I go. I think and I feel. I find myself in both good times and bad.
I am like you.
In fact, I am exactly like you or anyone else in the world.
I have seen beautiful things and tragic things. I have cried and wept myself to sleep. I have loved and lost. I have lost friends, loved ones, and sadly watched people say goodbye to me for the last time; only, neither of us knew it, which is why it was so sad.
I have flaws. I have character defects. I have disorders or dysphoria or whatever the mental health world chooses to categorize me with. Whatever it is, this is me and whatever I have, I have it nonetheless. And that’s fine. I am imperfect. I am sick, if you want to say it that way. I have something doctors call medically resistant.
This is fine too. I have other things too. I have talents. I have jokes to tell. I have a laugh and a smile and a heart, which beats repeatedly.
And sometimes . . .
Sometimes I look round. I wonder if there’s a joke somewhere. I wonder if this is all just a test and at any moment, someone is going to come around and tell me, “You made it!”
Suddenly everything will be revealed. And the studio audience will applaud me. And I’ll get some nice parting gifts too. Maybe I’ll get some fancy cookware or something like that. Who knows?
Any minute now, I’m hoping.
I’m hoping something comes through. I’m hoping something or someone reveals itself and both the pain and the strain will all make sense.
I have been me for a very long time. In fact, I have been me for 48 years, five months, and 21 days. This means I have been me for 581 months, 2,529 weeks, 17,706 days, and approximately 424,926 hours at the time of this reporting.
Throughout this time, I have had broken bones. I have my share of scars. I’ve been stitched up a few times. I’ve been in hospitals. I was in a motorcycle accident once. I have been in car accidents. I was around when The Trade Center was bombed on February 26, 1993. I was alive and well during the car chase that took place on television with the police chasing O.J Simpson back in 1995.
I remember when the world began to change. I remember when friends began to move away. I remember when the weddings began. I remember the changes in my nightlife and the wonder that comes about the next chapters. I remember thinking, “What about me?”
When is it my turn?
There were times when I felt lost. There were times when I wondered if I would ever make it. I spent time with the wrong people at the right times. This is true. There were also moments when I was with the right people at the wrong ones. There were times when I lived without love or safe to say, perhaps I was loveless. There were times when I played pretend to act as if and hoped that perhaps somehow, the story would all work out in the end.
Did I ever tell you . . .
The first real girlfriend of mine left me because she said if she stayed with me that she would have to work. And she didn’t want to work. She wanted to stay home and have someone take care of her.
And me, she said that if she stayed, she would have to work too. She said that I didn’t have enough money to take care of her. She said I would never make much of myself and because of this, she would have to work.
I remember being crushed – not just my heart but my ego as well. I thought about this for a long time. I remember thinking “I’ll never get over this.” Perhaps I meant this until I realized that “Never” is a really long time.
I remember a Tuesday morning at work. I remember the phone call. I remember when the Towers were hit by two planes. I saw my City run in fear. I saw what “They” did to my City. I was there when the Trade Center fell. I saw it.
I also saw my City pull together and learn to rebuild. There’s a building downtown, which we call The Freedom Tower. This building holds the souls of some of my friends that died that September 11, 2001.
I never thought we would rebuild but then again, I forgot that never is a really long time.
Know what I mean?
I don’t know if I will ever see a shooting star. I don’t think I’ve ever seen one. I don’t know if I’ll ever see the sun come up in places like Italy or maybe St Tropez. In fact, some days, I hardly know which way the world turns. I find myself in traffic, listening to music, and I am on autopilot. I don’t know which way the wind blows or why it changes. All I know is it is up to me to act accordingly,
I have a past. I have secrets. I have sins that I have tried to let go of (or keep buried) and I have a list of regrets. I have moments in my life that I wish I could change. There are times I wish I could go back to and unsay the things I’ve said. I have memories of times and places in which, I wish I said more and did more. I wish I could undo things. I wish I had an eraser. I wish I could change the memory of a little girl. But I can’t.
I have met people in my life that I wish I could have been different for them. I wish I was able to process things when I was younger.
I wish I wasn’t so afraid. Or while I’m at it, I wish that I had the guts to say what I thought or felt. More than anything, there are so many times I wished I stood up and walked away while I still had the chance. That takes balls!
There is no going back. I can say there is no reason to look back, which I get. I get it because dwelling in the unchangeable only leads to uncontrollableness and unmanageability.
I’ve had enough of that, thank you.
I have the need to jump in my car and drive. I say this with no destination in mind. I also say this with no slight or insult towards anyone. No, it’s not like that at all.
Instead, this is me feeling a need to break free. I have a need to stop the clock, so-to-speak. I say this because there is no quick breath or relief valve.
Sometimes, life can be a pressure cooker about to blow. In which case, I need a relief valve. Otherwise, I’m doomed.
I need to let off some steam, which is this here, which is you, which are these words and the empty hemispheres and the unknown universe that I send this too.
I want to drive as far as my gas tank will allow and find somewhere to get a bowl of soup. I want to thank the waitress with a kind tip, not to be too splurgey, but because I want my experience to be this perfect.
I have the need to drive and get away. I have the desire to scream as loud as I can from a rooftop of a tall building in Midtown, Manhattan.
I am very real. I have a heart. I have scars that I can see, which perhaps, no one else would notice. But either way, I see them. I know where they are. I know about them like a road map to my old former self.
There is a world out there. I know there is.
There are people, places, and things to live with, contend with, and coincide with. I am unsure sometimes and confident in others. I am a progress in motion, which is absolutely and perfectly fine.
I see no reason to disallow myself the right to be honest about my thoughts or feelings. I see no reason to pretend or partake in the bullshit charades we play.
It’s okay to be honest. It’s okay not to be okay.
And me, I’d rather be myself than try and fit into a world that doesn’t fit. I say this because I have been the square peg. I’ve tried to mold and adapt and force myself in places where I do not belong.
To be clear, that type of life doesn’t work for me anymore.
And dig it, it’s a scary thing to stand on your own. I say this both loudly and proudly. I say that yes, I am awkward and uncomfortable. I am frightened. I have a history that follows me wherever I go. I have a stigma placed on my back, which can almost seem like a target, which is fine because the target on my back and the knives that pierce it are only as sharp as I allow them to be.
The dilemma is in my mind. It always was, always has been, and if I allow it, the dilemma will always remain there; in my mind, which means I can heal as soon as I allow myself the permission to do so.
Life is not a cage.
The mind is not intended to be a prison and we are not built to live in fight or flight mode at all times. We have to find a way to create peace. This has to come from within. Otherwise, the solutions are only temporary. And me, I need something permanent.
See, I realized something: If I am to find my dream and build my farm. If I want to have that glass of lemonade in one of the fields at twilight when the fireflies come out; I have to find my way.
No matter what.
If I want to build that little pond that exists nowhere else but in my soul, and if I want to create the farm that I’ve dreamed of; if I want to build a place where I can sit in one of my lawn chairs to enjoy the summer’s sunset; if I want to see this place come to fruition; if I want to build a farm that I plan to call The Second Family, then I have to find my way.
No matter what . . .
By the way, have you ever seen the fireflies at dusk?
You need to see this before you die