It seems as though on long journeys between distant points on this Earth I get restless and deeply introspective. I find it hard to communicate with people outside of this context and become more withdrawn and unable to be my truest self in this head-space. I’m not sure what to make of it or why it occurs in the first place, but it certainly isn’t a new experience.
I spent the better part of a few days this last week honestly contemplating what I am doing with my life and why I feel as though I have very little direction or none at all. I know for a fact that this isn’t true and that my life is moving along quite nicely, while at the same time I have a difficult time rationalizing the choices I have made in my life with regard to my decision to not pursue any relationships or even to engage in social outings centered around such things. I’ve spent the better part of the last two or three months trying to put the past behind me and to learn from the mistakes that were made in the relationship that I just exited. In my occasionally futile attempts to grow and to become more than I was, I had become afraid of engaging anyone at that level and so swore myself into a kind of exile, one that feels less a cage than simple weighted vest, dragging my core down.
In spite of all of this, there exists a strong desire to bond and to release myself into the embrace of another. I can’t deny the strong pull of another’s embrace, the ability to simply press my face into the neck or chest of another and to feel as if I am truly part of this world. I have long felt disconnected from this place and from the people in it, though I originally rationalized it as simply another heavy price paid for being unencumbered by the emotional and physical weight of others. In realizing the reality of the situation; that situation being that I was, am, and will be cut-off from others and the greater human experience for as long as I maintain this belief, I will remain in this state of constant ache and desire.
It is fairly probable that much of this originates in my early childhood, where I found myself cut off from the greater experiences that I was denied as part of my emotional and physical bondage as a primary student. I longed, much as I do in my impending middle-aged life, to have a best friend. One with which I could share my deepest secrets, one who I could easily and without judgement embrace as if they were my blood brother, and spend the hours learning and playing as it seems only young children truly can.
My therapist has stated that in the past, it is generally difficult to resolve this kind of mental wounding. Often it seems as if it comes down to a combination of forgiving one’s past circumstances as a whole and accepting that what happened is mostly immutable. The only exception to that statement being that at least in one’s memory of the events, a person can engage in mental exercises in which they embrace their wounded inner-child in that moment and have a frank conversation with them as to how they feel and why they feel that way. In this exercise, it is possible for a person to engage in the work of healing those psychic wounds and move beyond their original pain to a place where they can begin healing.
It is striking to me that even fifteen years removed from the situations that used to bring me depression and heartache, I still retain this hole in my heart that I find difficult to fill. I crave to be deeply-embraced, to be approved, to be loved and enjoyed as I wish I would have in my early youth. Whether that speaks more loudly about myself or simply the situational inability to find the approval and the warmth that I am seeking, I’m not sure. It could be argued that I simply have not made the necessary changes in my life or in my personal beliefs to be as capable of self-love as is probably healthy for someone like myself. I have been told on more than one occasion that I am a good person, that I have a few faults and idiosyncrasies, but on-the-whole I am desirable and loved. I often have a hard time believing this, and as an adjunct to the entire discussion above, it could also be argued that I am my own worst enemy.