Thursday, July 7, 2016

Don't Settle Because You're Scared of Being Alone

Not so long ago, somebody commented on my blog about how transparent I've been through my whole divorce process. It made me feel good, but it also made me think: Am I really transparent? Do I depict things as they truly are? Make things seem better? Or maybe worse (we all know I have a tendency to veer toward the melodramatic)? The answers, respectively, are yes; at the moment of writing; I don't try to; and I don't think so. Still, thinking about past posts, I can't help but think there's a lot I've left out.

Two days ago was the Fourth of July. Independence Day. Sitting on my couch alone that night, watching Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, I couldn't help but think about the symbolism of the holiday in relation to my life. I have my independence now, all right, I thought to myself, and I'm honestly glad to have it, but along with that independence comes a lot of things for which I didn't plan: isolation, loneliness, and depression among them.

What I've realized since being alone is that I absolutely hate being alone. I've had discussions with people who have said, and read articles in a similar vein,that people have to truly like themselves and if they do, they'll like spending time alone, and to that, I have to say, bull. Maybe not for everybody, of course, but certainly for me, and if for me, then surely for others as well.

Here's the thing. I like myself just fine. I think I'm smart and funny and pretty and fun; I admire the originality of my thoughts; I have damn good musical taste; I go places and do things and finally live, live, live my life. If I weren't me, I'd totally be in love (and kind of have a hard time understanding how everybody is not). But I am me, and as much as I'm sitting here patting myself on the back for who I am, I'm not my friend. Spending time with myself is exactly that. It's spending time alone.

As I spent time alone on the Fourth of July--which is really no different from how I spend most of my time--I thought about my life circumstances and how I got here. I thought about having a husband for almost twenty years, very good friends who have moved away, a very good friend who drifted away, people I valued as my friends who didn't value me, lovers I've had since my divorce who I didn't care about at all, and I realized that despite how happy I am to have this new life, I'm also really sad.

But then, as I was watching Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, I thought about something my mom said to me either earlier that night or the day before regarding C.

Don't you wish you could just turn your feelings off? she asked, which now that I think about it may actually have been what led me to watch Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.

No, I said. I don't.

Why? You like liking him? she asked.

I don't remember what I said, but I can answer that now with a resounding no. Of course I don't like liking someone who it makes me miserable to like. Despite that, though, I would never turn my feelings off, and I certainly never would, like in the movie, opt to forget they existed in the first place.

And that doesn't go for just C.

That goes for everything I've ever felt, good or bad, even this horrible bout of sadness in which I'm currently immersed. These things are what make me the me I'm so smitten with (albeit not entertained by), and I'm not interested in being anyone else. Plus, according to the movie, we're all going to just end up where we were anyway, memories or not. Some things are just meant to be.

At the moment, it just so happens I'm not sure exactly of my specific meant to be, but sure or not, I know that it's something.