pageturner

Is it time yet to start thinking about those things which I referenced a few posts ago only as daydreams? Perhaps it is. Not to say that I haven’t been getting by just fine here or that I can’t continue to do so. As I mentioned to someone earlier today, a part of me doesn’t even want to leave. A part of me just wants to continue quietly going about my business and not bothering or being bothered by anyone. In a way it will certainly be harder to return to any place that’s not a de facto deployed location; a place (both physical and mental/emotional) where I interact more frequently with more people, especially people outside of the day-in, day-out (or sometimes night-in, night-out) workplace crowd. But of course some things in life are hard. That’s part of why we do them, right JFK?

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Corrections

The disjointed and ungrammatical conclusion of the previous post can be credited to the less than stellar quality of the iPad version of the WordPress.com website! 

Forgiveness

it’s a subject that’s spent a lot of time rattling around my brain in the recent past, even before someone explicitly invoked it in (what else?) a Facebook message. Now is not the time for a full exploration, but I want to at least break the no-posts ice that has accumulated for what seems like a couple of months at least. in terms of shareable content, I definitely feel like I’ve been receiving/consuming.

much and producing/giving little. Time for some service before self? Ok, not super soon because I need to sleep, but 

To Be Forgetton

When the rest of the world goes away; when I find myself on nights like this wondering whether it’s fate, whether it’s chance, whether it’s a just desert or whether this is simply me coming to terms with who I really am. I can be more honest with myself now, which is good because I have little aptitude and even less affinity for lies. I can process all the things that happened during an ephemeral era when the exchanges of words and actions meant so much more than they do now; I can view them through a lens of sobriety and the far remove of both time and distance. I also feel the relief of not having to pick and choose exactly what I say and don’t say in order to initiate and then cement just the right impression of myself in someone’s mind. Of all the things I intermittently miss, the game is not one of them.

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Add 9

I’ve been working a bit on a new song. I think it started to come to me a few weeks ago in New Orleans when I randomly came across an art-gallery type area adjacent to my hotel that had a perfectly usable piano and no discernible reason why I couldn’t play it. At that point it was just the just the beginnings of a tune, and I think it totally slipped my mind for a while afterward, but lately I’ve started to mess around with it again and developed at least a good chuck of the first verse along with the instrumental intro. So far it seems to concern a similar theme as my previous post here: that of peace, quiet, and lack of any momentous happenings or emotional extremes (good or bad). I don’t feel any unbearable sense of discontent. I have a good life, all things considered. The only problem is that I know too much; my memory, despite my own efforts at times, is too good. I’d be fine with this if it were all I knew.

And really, I am fine with it. I generally project a positive demeanor to those around me rather than whining or taking a “woe is me” attitude. This journal and my previous one probably show a less happy version of me only because writing here is how I vent. I don’t really have a best friend or confidant, at least not in the sense of someone to whom I always turn when the going gets rough. Now there certainly exist people who would do, and in actuality have done, what they could to help me when I asked. I can think of a good few times when I did share a problem with someone, explicitly or implicitly, and truly appreciated the support I got. However, in general that’s not my style. For a combination of reasons, some likely intrinsic and some relating to specific experiences I’ve had, I don’t tend to lean on anyone else. When something is making me unhappy and I have no immediate or direct means of fixing the issue (yes, this usually means relationship or failed-relationship problems), I get myself through it. Partly by choice and partly by necessity, I continue on as if completely unaffected.

All that said, there’s currently no need for me to persevere through any such difficulties. I have a very simple life with few absolute responsibilities aside from doing my job and paying my bills. Though no one is perfect and I’m certainly not anywhere close, I think I’ve done a decent job trying to balance my primary commitments with spending time with my family (all of whom live over 1000 miles away) and doing things that I enjoy. As I wrote the other day, I could still do more in terms of helping others both locally and on a bigger scale, and I’m actively pursuing such ends. No one really criticizes the way I live, possibly because no one is “in my life” to an extent that he or she could offer informed criticism. That seems odd, and sometimes I wish it weren’t the case, but it’s the way things have worked out.

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Restful, restful

After a relatively busy but enjoyable last couple of months filled with lots of travel (Dallas, Nashville, Montgomery, Atlanta, Tifton, Destin, New Orleans, Chicago) and many welcome opportunities to spend time with friends and family, I’ve returned to Clovis. Life will be a lot quieter in the coming months and, potentially, years. I don’t think of that as an unbearably bad thing. As a natural introvert, I’m fine spending a lot of time alone and keeping myself occupied by reading, running, cleaning up the house, watching TV or Netflix, (shortly) doing work for Master’s classes, etc. There are also plenty of ways, either as yet unexplored (math tutoring, building houses with Habitat) or not fully realized (volunteering with the local tennis teams) that I can spend my time and use my resources in order to help others. I don’t expect anything terribly exciting to be going on. I’ll just be here, doing my job, acting responsibly and not becoming a problem for anyone. The daydreams and idle imaginings about living somewhere else, doing something else, being with someone else, and so forth will continue, but I can deal with them and keep going about my business.

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Funk soul brother

The desire, and the difficulty, of creating something new and original–expressing myself with my own unique strings of words and phrases rather than simply regurgitating a few lines that I probably first heard on my 3-in-1 boom box in one of the years leading up to Y2K…
Everything has a connotation. One thing makes me think of something else. I said in the last post that I don’t feel old, but when any momentary and insignificant sight or sound can release a torrent of memories from any number of years past, it forces me to accept that I’ve experienced a lot more (good and bad) than many “young” people have.

outlier

I’m currently spending a good deal of time, both professionally and personally, with a group of 13 peers. Most are about my age and have several other attributes (gender, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, line of work) in common with me. One dissimilarity I noted is that each of the other 13 is married, with many also having children.

I don’t consider this fact in a hugely positive or negative light–in terms of my interactions with them, it has its advantages and its drawbacks. One point which has really stood out in my mind is that, in comparison to anyone with a similar work commitment and a family, I have more time to myself. I have a wider range of places to go and things to do during the hours when I’m not working or sleeping. I feel a lot of freedom, possibility and potential, though I’ll be the first to admit I don’t always excel at seizing and making notable use of all that independence.

My 31st birthday isn’t far away, but I don’t “feel old” and have honestly never empathized much with anyone who expresses such sentiments. I do understand how transitioning from college to the working world and, perhaps more significantly, marriage and parenthood can psychologically spell the end of youth for some. I’ve experienced one of those life events, and hopefully my maturity and responsibility levels have increased since age 21. On the other hand, I (by most accounts) both look and act younger than my age, and I have no heartburn about that.

I’ve written more than once here about the last several years of my life presenting some unexpected and unwelcome situations and making me learn some very hard lessons. That said, I’ve made it through everything so far, and I have every intention of making the best of my present reality. Granted, I can sometimes sense a widening gulf between myself and many of those whose past commonalities I share–but I’m not fearful of mapping my own course.

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well then

And in lighter news, the fun of being an Atlanta sports fan continues! Umm…go Hawks?

I’m also on a quixotic quest to get people here interested in a little 2-on-2 game called Spikeball. I absolutely love the game, It seems to be exploding in popularity across many cities and regions, and almost everyone I’ve met seems to enjoy playing. Unfortunately, most colleagues here on base fall into the small category of “not almost everyone”. Oh well, I’ll keep trying.

For a final note, I attended a local Parks and Rec committee meeting. The committee members were a good bit older and somewhat more plain of speech than Leslie Knope, Mark Brandanowitz or whatever that intern girl’s name is (haven’t watched the show in a while).

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Pageturning

I don’t generally like or enjoy change–I’ve probably made that clear here and in first-hand conversations. I certainly didn’t like getting orders to Clovis. After spending some time and effort looking into various alternative opportunities and possibilities, I didn’t like hearing the news that I won’t be leaving here anytime soon. I should not, however, lose sight of the fact that, in a way, life (outside of my job) is less stressful here. My parents and almost all other family are at least half a continent away. I have no second job, no night school (at the moment), no major debts other than my mortgage, no kids, no wife, no girlfriend, no one with whom it’s complicated, no BFFs, really nothing except work which has a constant, significant, non-negotiable hold on where I go and what I do. Yes, as previously noted, things have not quite gone the way I’d expected either professionally or personally. Originally spoken by a student leader during OTS, “It only gets harder” is a mantra I’ve repeated again and again as a way of getting me through many stretches of the past several years. Still, I should certainly not shut my mind to the reality that it’s easier than it could be. Sometimes I feel angry, and sometimes I feel sad, and sometimes I just wish there were somebody around. I’m human. I accept those feelings and don’t try to bury them or drown them out anymore. But I can get through it. Perhaps it only gets easier.

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