Acting, Not Being

In my last post “Well Lit, Dark Place” I talked about being in a dark place, about being emotionally alone or socially disconnected.  Perhaps my comments and the title were a bit misleading as the intent of the comment was much more figurative than actual.  I’m not really in such as dark place as was interpreted, more a place that is dark in the sense that I wish I were not there, alone and feeling I’m without connection to others.

I refered to Dexter, the main character of television series about a disturbed man, his emotional pain being the result of witnessing his mother butchered (literally).  A quote from Wikipedia describes it like this:

 “Dexter believes that he has no emotions, and he has to work non-stop to appear normal and blend in with the other people around him”.

I must make it clear though, it’s only some of these similarities with Dexter I can relate to, I (in no possible way) feel like I need to go out and murder or hurt someone, including myself.  I just feel disconnected

I can play the part though, I can act happy when not, or put on a friendly face when I don’t feel it, and that is what concerns me.  People have no more of an idea of who I really am than I do.  I often feel numb, unable to connect with those near me, scared to reveal who I really am or what I truly feel. I’m in disguise. It’s like I have a secret identity, like a super hero, except I’m not ‘super’.

I sometimes lack true emotion yet at other times I have more emotion, more happiness or sadness than I can bear. Am I blocking the real, continous feeling to prevent myself from being hurt? Where does this come from? Why?  Where am I going?

Some time back I wrote a post about adapting, this is something my counselor Gloria informed me of.  Essentially adapting is putting on a front, or becoming like a chameleon and changing your stripes to fit the environment.  Adapting to the circumstances and putting on a front whether you truly feel it or not.  The trouble is that Adapting can be exhausting.  Perhaps this is partially why I often prefer being alone, no adapting required.

I’m think I’m hiding, hiding in plain site, unable to reach out.  That’s why I feel like I’m in the dark, but recognizing and accepting it provides illumination.

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On the Road again

source http://www.miss-thrifty.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2008/09/travelling-salesman.jpg

I’m soon to be on the road again and I feel like a traveling salesman, and to think at one point I aspired to a role like that. Now, maybe not so much.

I have been approached recently too, to see if I’d be interested in taking on a sales position since I’ve retired.  It would mean travel probably 2 or 3 days a week, living in hotels and eating restaurant food.  Boozing and schmoozing customers would be the norm, it would most likely tax my adapting skills to the max, and I’d probably be back into the stress mode. More here

Depression. Mine is……well, Depressed – pt.1

I’ve been feeling pretty good lately, not at all angry and as unhappy as I was before.  My depression, if that what it is, seems to have diminished or become depressed itself.  I was never 100% sure it was depression but as I understand there is a broad spectrum of symptoms and I had a number of them.  In some ways it’s hard to remember really what it was like during the bad times but I think some mental health issues are like that, in that when you start feeling good you forget a bit about what feeling bad was like.  I have a sense I didn’t like it much.  Being as I’m in a good space now I thought I could update things a bit.  Have a seat with me and let’s roll.

Intrigued? Read more

Can’t pull myself away

I’m sitting here, along with my wife, in front of the tv and wanting something different. Why can’t I pull myself away? I’m obviously not watching, but I am still hearing the dialogue and still taking in some of the goings on, enough that I know my focus is not on what I am doing. I am literally of two minds. One is listening (partially) to the tv and the other working on this blog.

In light of what I said in my last post about intensity I must be daft. It takes me back to school days where I would argue that I could watch tv and study at the same time. It is draining me on some level and much like watching a horror movie I can’t pull myself away.

I was talking to the Assisted Living Coordinator at Dads new home the other day and found her comments interesting regarding her work/home life balance. She was running pillar to post at work and I asked her if it was always like that, and what does she do to come down when she goes home?  She said she loves to read but when she gets home she’s too up, too wired to relax and take up a book. I can totally relate. Gloria thought perhaps in my case it’s because at work I adapt, essentially putting up a facade or front between me and work life. Unfortunately it requires energy to do so, much like a forcefield requires energy to maintain it’s shield. Then of course when I get home the forcefield comes down but my batteries are drained.

So here we are, full circle, at home with drained batteries and unable to pull myself away from the mindless sponge of television. Woe is me!

To adapt, or not to adapt, That is the question.

I’m looking forward to the weekend, and it’s only hours away now.  We are camping about 20 min. away and I’ve been commuting to/from work.  It’s not as bad as I thought, the drive is quite relaxing and doesn’t take long.  I should be using the time to think deep thoughts but not much of that has come to me lately.  I must be slightly “out of sync” with the cosmic forces.

We will stay until Sunday or Monday being that Monday is a stat, and if the weather holds.  Family has been invited out on Saturday for a bar-b-que, hopefully a low key event.  I”m not much for get-togethers, my non-social side wins out in that regard.  I say non-social because I’m not against the socializing, it’s just something that I don’t often want to get involved with.  Little of the conversations stimulate or interest me and if I try to put on much of a happy face I find it very draining.  Gloria said it may be because in circumstances like that I am adapting to the situation, and it’s the effort to adapt that tires me out.  As a result I’ll often have some alcohol to chill me out, perhaps not the most appropriate response but effective.

Honesty

So if honesty is important to my posts I’d have to say I’m often bored in conversations with others.  It just seems like so much of what we say to each other is mundane, I don’t have the knack for small talk, don’t necessarily want to either.  I think it comes back around to the whole “adapting” philosophy Gloria and I talked about. I can adapt and chat with others but unfortunately I don’t often enjoy it, the small talk I mean.  I feel as if I’m forcing myself to say something noteworthy, something germaine to the conversation.  It seldom feels real.  I also have to say that this isn’t necessarily a frequent occurence, it’s not every conversation I have, but when I try to bond with some people I think I come across as being phoney.  Perhaps I am, I don’t want to be though, I want to genuinely connect.  I sometimes watch others relate, to monitor their body language and how/what they say in hopes of picking up clues as to how to improve my skills.  So far no epiphany, and that makes me sad.

G’s visit- Word for the day is Adapting, I do it all the time

It appears that keeping up the posts is a bigger challenge than I’ve anticipated, maintaining a schedule should not be too hard even though I can’t seem to achieve it.

I’m just waiting now for my appt with Gloria, don’t really know what we’ll chat about and I hope it will be fruitful.

One of my frustrations is continual procrastination, and I have a book on the topic and inevitably I continue putting off reading it.  There’s something in that statement I think.  I’ll have to resurrect it I think, and in fact at one point I thought I threw it out.

We could talk more about family issues too, either the mother/daughter dynamics, my annoyance with Mo’s sister, or perhaps my Dad and the issues around him.  Likely that will come up. I think my most relative emotion there will be guilt, for not being there for him and also for not wanting to be.  That’s likely the kicker.
~~~
After visit with Gloria:

Much of the above was discussed. And….

  • possible visit with Tracy
  • visiting/socializing with others, and likely work itself, require I “adapt”.  Hearing it expressed that way opened my eyes.
  • I shouldn’t feel guilty about my taking time away from Dad care, and asking for help
  • I’m doing well in setting boundaries when it comes to socializing, in camping and at home.  Ties in with the adapting theme.
  • we talked about what gifted means, about seeing connections between things that others don’t see, or seeing them sooner.  How I/we see or perceive more things around us, are sensitive to more sensory input (my words).
  • I talked of how I feel as if I’m seen as a good listener, a trusted confidant, a wise soul, and how that can drain me, taking in others troubles with no one to talk to myself.  I now talk to Gloria of course but ultimately a peer or someone of like mind, someone I can relate to on the same level, would be preferable.  She suggests hat will likely come.
  • we talked of this blog and the direction it has, and perhaps should, take. How I want to open up but at the same time are afraid of sharing too much.

I enjoy the chats when we do get into it, the nugget this week was my “adapting” to certain circumstances, a strength but something to be aware of so as not to overdo it.  I adapt when in social circumstances, I adapt in my job, I adapt in areas which are somewhat outside my comfort zone.  The act of adapting requires the expending of energy, putting up a “persona” of sorts, possibly a forcefield on occasion.

What I want to know is why can’t I come up with this shit on my own?  I’m supposed to be a bright guy. Go figure.

And as an aside, is it (that I feel) constant validation I think Ma is looking for, judging by my take on various comments and the context she makes them in?  Draining.