Added a personal page to my blog to encourage myself to post more about, well, me… (also redesigned it again; check my homepage if you want and let me know what you think). This is coming about because I recently lost my immediate connection to a spiritual community that I will sorely miss, and because I am feeling bitter, resentful, and utterly alone right now.
So, here goes… I guess the thing that might be the most interesting and intriguing to my followers is that I should be dead, statistically speaking. May seem overdramatic to say, but it’s very true. If I were to tell you the story of my childhood, and really my life, a story that is simply not summarizable in one blog post (or maybe I’m also not ready to make that story public yet—if you message me I might share some of it offline, I’m not sure), you would understand why. Suffice it to say: I was abused in every way possible. A lot.
This is also a psychological fact, however. Based on what I suffered growing up, most people who have suffered the same commit suicide, or at least attempt to.
[Queue “Alive” by Pearl Jam ;-)] Why do I share this now? I don’t know. I suppose I’m seeking validation. Suffering what I suffered growing up… it’s not something anyone can understand who hasn’t suffered in the exact same way, I’m figuring out. The best recent reference to coming from a severely dysfunctional household such as mine is from The Dark Knight Rises, actually:
John Blake: Not a lot of people know what it feels like to be angry, in your bones. I mean, they understand, foster parents, everybody understands, for awhile. Then they want the angry little kid to do something he knows he can’t do, move on. So after awhile they stop understanding. They send the angry kid to a boys home. I figured it out too late. You gotta learn to hide the anger, practice smiling in the mirror. It’s like putting on a mask.
This quote resonates with me in a way that I can’t easily describe. It is, as they say, like someone else described the experience of my life exactly. Every day I wake up and I put on that mask. Maybe today I’m the college professor that I have to be to pay the bills. Maybe today I’m the fiance of a wonderful woman who I often think would be better off finding a more well-adjusted person to be with.
That’s not exactly right, though. It’s like wearing multiple masks at the same time and constantly having to shift between them. What does a Buddhist/college professor/poet do in this situation? What does a normal, loving fiance do in this other situation? I feel that I am always acting out a role, and none of it feels natural, or ever will.
What does feel natural, you might be wondering? Pain, mostly. I understand pain. Deep, black, soul-swallowing pain. The kind of pain that makes it difficult to function, the kind that wakes you up in the middle of the night like when you were a kid and you woke up cranky and sick with some virus and couldn’t get back to sleep. It’s always with me… my oldest companion and my first memory of feeling… well, of feeling anything at all, I guess…
Anyway, that about sums up what it’s like being me. Nice to finally meet all of you for the first time (wow, just started crying a bit writing that last sentence :). The last thing I will say is that, I truly appreciate all of you who follow me and who I in turn follow. You give me hope that I’m not alone, that there are other people struggling with their own personal brand of suffering.
I appreciate your honesty, courage, and willingness to reveal yourselves in ways that I’m not often able to.
Guiseppe aka dharmasimulation