Testing one, two…testing one, two…is this thing on?
¡Muy bien! Let’s dust off these cobwebs, shall we?
Welcome back, folks, to the Confessions.
And no, your GReader isn’t playing tricks on you.
For those of you who’ve had the distinct pleasure of talking to me, you are well aware that I will say anything. Well more like my mental filter is just very selective in how it wants to work. I will be the first one to get people to laugh in an awkward silence. Those of have ever talked to me on Skype, Google Video, the phone, or in person probably realized quickly that I am just a wee bit of a motor mouth.
Yet despite all my love of talking, I suck at meeting people.
Oh sure I can go up to someone and introduce myself but I always feel anxious. Like I always feel like I’m bothering people by talking to them. Maybe it is just the last shades of my inner shy child but it always happens whenever I meet someone new.
Even online, I do this. I’ll get on Gmail or Skype (if you haven’t added me yet, for shame) and see people who I would love to talk to are on but I just freeze up. Some time I will actually open the conversation box and just stare at it because I have no idea what to say or how to get a conversation started. It’s like in middle school when I was still at Big Bang Theory-levels of social awkwardness.
Then comes the actual starting a friendship and where 95% of my anxiety stems from. I was pretty much an outcast (very very much not by choice) until high school and even now at 23, I still sometimes wonder if people are actually my friends. Yeah, I know that’s a common fear but so far as I can tell, not many others have this thought immediately.
I generally follow a few steps: I meet someone. Whether at a store, train, in class, at work, and find myself in a conversation with them. This happens repeatedly. I start hanging out with them purposefully. But I still hear that voice in my head going “what if they are just humoring me to be polite?”
I hate being alone.
Abhor it. Loathe it. Despite it.
I thrive on having someone to talk to. It’s like giving a starving man a feast. Without the GI issues, of course. And I’d be lying if the thought of going back to that does not fill me with dread.
Is this fear unhealthy? As long as I’m not going to insane lengths to keep people in my life, I would think not. But I’ve never really been one for denial so might as well get it out there. Considering how many people in the past year alone, I’ve cut out of my life for various personal reasons I think I am OK on this front.
Or so I hope.
The people who are all ready my friends, and have proven so time and again, deserve better from me.
Time to give it to them.
Last time on The Confessions of an Odd Duck:
In the past few years, I have been able to track my pattern where women are concerned.
Boy meets Girl.
Boy and Girl become good friends over time.
Boy and Girl jokingly flirt.
Boy twigs that Girl may not be joking.
Boy freaks out, broods, waffles on whether to do something about it.
Girl informs Boy he is being an idiot. Kissing may be used.
Lather. Rinse. Repeat.
With the exception of Scarlett, this is how EVERY SINGLE ONE of my relationships has gone.
Boy Meets Girl.
Boy and Girl realize the other is their snarky match.
They antagonize each other for a few weeks like 1st graders.
Boy and Girl find out they both like Call of Duty.
Girl makes Boy her bitch.
Boy and Girl bond over video games.
Girl has her tires slashed and quite a bit is stolen. Boy is called to pick her up.
Boy stays with Girl as she has mild breakdown.
Girl officially declares Boy one of her best friends.
When Boy’s roommate disappears after they get into a fist fight, Girl and her roommate largely take him in.
When Boy discovers his girlfriend had been cheating on him, Girl is the first to try and help him through it.
Boy realizes he might have feelings for Girl. He fights it completely.
Boy and Girl rent a house together.
Boy plays matchmaker for Girl.
Boy and Girl feel like they have lived together for years come Christmas.
Boy and Girl go to New York where Girl’s old roommate cottons on to how Boy might feel.
Girl seems to be flirting with Boy. Boy is terribly confused.
During a spring break trip to Cancun, Girl and Boy own up to how they both feel.
And now here we are. Those of you who saw the post yesterday or cottoned on to what I was talking about on Twitter, your eyes were not deceiving you.
Am I young? Yes. Am I financially stable? Yes. Am I emotionally stable? Against all odds, yes. Do I see us being compatible enough to make this kind of commitment? Hell yes.
My entire life I have always wondered if I am going enough for things. Second-guessing myself has long been second nature here. But I am self-aware enough to acknowledge that I can and do make her happy. During a conversation over coffee with Pippi, I admitted out loud how close I was to at least buying the ring, she questioned why I hadn’t all ready.
This woman knows me better than 95% of the people in my life. Nine years of friendship probably helps. So to hear that from her shouldn’t have surprised me even if it did.
She pointed out how I’m less flighty with Scarlett. How her edges seem to soften with me. How fiercely we go to bat for each other. How we are utterly unafraid to piss the other off if we think they are wrong. How open we are with each other. How we like to just spend time together. She closed by saying that we act, and have for a long time, like any happily married couple she could think of.
And as I thought about that, I reviewed our relationship since those first days in Chapel Hill, and realized she was absolutely right.
I want this. I want my life to be with her. I want to wake up at 70, look over, and see her sleeping next to me.
Hence why Sunday afternoon saw me roping Marilyn into helping me pick out a ring. And why Monday had me calling her parents for That Talk.
But various heartbreaks have beaten caution into me. I remember how happy I was with both Tink and Eva. I remember how those both ended, even if Tink was entirely my fault. I am trying to let my mind rule for a bit over my heart and if you know me, you know how hard that is. Looking before I leap does NOT come naturally.
That is why I am waiting on popping the question. Really do not want to imagine how it would feel to get turned down on that one. It’s no longer a question of “if” but “when”.
But, like the optimist I somehow am, I see the silver lining here.
This delay gives me time to plot how to do this.
Because after this tweet from A Mom In Real Life, I feel like there may be a challenge here. I have a few bare-bones ideas but nothing remotely concrete. Over the next few months, I am probably going to be asking you all for advice on how to do things. Especially our tech savvy bloggers.
After all, anything worth doing is worth doing right.
*Half the title of this post is directly lifted from the lovely Jeney. Who if you hadn’t congratulated her on her engagement yet, you should. Now.
Or a group of them.
Free love and all that.
Your friends are the people who are celebrating with you at your highest. They are the ones who offer to shank those who hurt you. They are the ones who you can just hang out with in silence.
They burrow their way into your hearts and refuse to let go.
And you (eventually) realize that you like having them there.
They are the ones who show up every Sunday for dinner.
They are the ones who you stay up all night with playing video games.
They are the ones who you can go months without seeing and fall back into old routines like breathing.
They are the ones who stand with you at the end of the day.
They are the ones who you can talk to for hours and not run out of things to say.
They are the ones who let you know when you’re out of line.
They are your people. Your family. You may fight. You may hurt each other sometimes. You may split for a while. But the ones who stick it out are in for the long haul. They will be there for you to lean on. To cry with. To laugh yourself sick with.
And you are thankful for them, all of them.
Keep them close.
Be there when they need you.
Let them be there when you need them.
No one has to be lonely.
So whether it is your roommate, ex-turned-best-friend, co-worker, significant other, or the crazy wonderful people you meet through the Internet, do right by them.
They deserve nothing less.
It’s two days late but WordPress is finally letting me publish posts again.
Our friend Brandy is a brilliant writer, a wonderful teacher, and a generous friend. And she is in love with a man who has just been diagnosed with multiple myeloma.
We are raising money for the Multiple Myeloma Research Fund in his name. For the price of a cinnamon dolce latte, half-caf, hold the whip, you can be part of an effort to cure a disease that affects approximately 750,000 people worldwide.
Every dollar brings us a dollar closer to a cure. And every donation brings a sliver of hope to a girl who needs all the hope she can get.
What You Can Do
- Give. Be part of a worldwide effort to cure a disease that affects approximately 750,000 people worldwide. Every dollar helps.
- Pass it on. Forward this story to five people. Share this blog post. Become our fan on Facebook.
- Love harder. Life is short, love is unbending, and no one knows what could happen next. Tell someone you love them today.
Where Your Money Goes
- The American Institute of Philanthropy recently named The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation one of the best organizations to give to in terms of their accountability and use of resources.
- By working closely with researchers, clinicians and partners in the biotech and pharmaceutical industry, the MMRF has helped bring multiple myeloma patients four new treatments that are extending lives around the globe.
- The MMRF has advanced twenty Phase I and Phase II clinical trials. They need your support to advance these clinical research programs and accelerate the development of better, more effective treatments.
- The MMRF’s Multiple Myeloma Genomics Initiative recently became the first to sequence the multiple myeloma whole genome in its entirety.
- A whopping 98% of your donation to the MMRF will be used immediately to support high-priority multiple myeloma research.
- With diminishing funding for early stage drug development and the next myeloma treatments not expected to be approved until 2011, the MMRF desperately needs your help.
Update: Over $3,000 has been raised so far. tres mil. And who says the Internet is filled with a bunch of uncaring people? Also? The store went online today here
“Life hard. Love harder.”
Sunday evening, a few of you caught my outburst on Twitter, I apologize for that. For those curious, I am better now. Not a lot but I am no longer in danger of curling into a ball and sobbing or smashing something in anger.
Probably would have been both.
What could destroy every single shred of emotional stability I have like that, you ask?
If you have been reading this blog prior to last June or just read back through my archives, I make it pretty obvious that I adore children. We’re talking kid fever like woah. This is part of why I came to care for Daybreak as much and as fast as I did. If I’m in the supermarket and there is a baby around, I will make silly faces at them without fail. My paternal instincts have been turned up to 11 and have been since I hit puberty.
And in that lies the irony that played a big part in my hating God for almost 6 years.
Because of some damage to my testes, I have a very low sperm count. (Very simplified explanation.) As a result? Sterility.
The guy who wants kids so much so that it hurts? Can’t have them.
While I had known for years that I would have trouble fathering a child, going to a doctor and finding out that it would actually be a damn near impossibility outside of in vitro or adoption for me to have kids…there were tears. I eventually accepted this fact (as much as you can accept something like that) and had decided that when I was fully ready I would just adopt. Have to admit thought that it was easier to hide when I was a teenager and only two or three people I knew were having kids as opposed to now where seven couples are expecting, one just had a baby girl last week, and two others are actively trying.
Every single time I see a baby, I kind of melt into a puddle of goo. And even though it does hurt, I still love to make them smile or laugh. Seeing those eyes light up and hearing a loud giggle as they kick around leaves me with a huge smile on my face.
I am OK with that.
Then this happened.
Said video was also accompanied by a message saying I needed to learn to deal with the issue.
You, as my friend, think you are doing me a favour by shoving that in my face? Bet you were surprised by how pissed I was at you during that phone conversation huh?
Would you send someone who had a permanent limp a video of a man running a marathon and tell them to deal with it?
Then why the fuck would you send me something like that?!
I don’t get why taking a small moment to think before doing something is so hard for people. We aren’t that lazy, are we? It’s called compassion folks, practice a little.
The events of yesterday cost me a friend of 2 years. And as apparently I should be able to deal with this (in her own words, “keep how it affected me to myself and deal with it as a man ” and that I should not be angry for her “doing her duty as my friend”) I was told that she would better off without me.
Feeling’s entirely mutual, bitch.
Not letting it show how much things affect me led to me almost putting a gun in my mouth. I’m never going back to that. I refuse to.
So I’m going to bandage the new bruises on my heart. I’m going to find my happy place. And I’m gonna move on with my life.
Last night was not in the least pleasant. So after I hung up the phone and was trying to bottle the emotions until I could control them, I decided not to. I let it out and then I tried to find something that made me happy. Just one thing.
There really was no contest there.
And with tears still falling, I danced.
Even when my heart was clattering against the floor, I still found it in me to smile. That, dear friends, is dealing with it. The best way I know how.
*Thanks to everyone who sent me good wishes and checked up on me last night. You all win at life. Seriously.
**Super oh-my-god-I-would-hug-you-if-I-could thanks go to BelleRenee who having never heard of me nor knowing what my situation was not only sent her own good thoughts to me and asked how she could help but did not hesitate (there was seriously like a 2 or 3 minute wait) to agree to give me permission to use her famous vlog for this post.
***Comments are open on this post. Please don’t make me regret that.
This idea comes from PQ who you should all start reading now if you aren’t all ready. Because she is seven different flavours of awesome.
I LOVE…that this frigid weather is an excuse for me to wear the toboggan I got for Christmas. Because being able to wear one of my hats to work is ALWAYS a great way to start the day. Yes, I do have a hat fetish.
I LOVE…that so many people have commented, tweeted, texted, and/or e-mailed me about writing a review of the Pocket Gal for next week’s TMI Thursday. Done.
I LOVE…that the fabulously badass Liz from It’s Unbeweavable, in a spur of the moment Gchat conversation, gave me the e-mail for Dave at Eden Fantasys to talk about the possibility of being a reviewer for male sex toys. Being paid to write? Awesome. Being paid to write about fun things that I can get off to? Crazy. Being paid to write about things that get me off and that are sent to me for free? Crazy awesome indeed.
I LOVE…that my flu has finally calmed the fuck down and I feel human again. Being able to eat stuffed french toast from IHOP? It gives me a happy. In my mouth.
I LOVE…that there was a 2 hour delay which means that I was able to spend time with The Girl at IHOP for said french toast. The Girl who I have only seen twice since Monday. And who I may have spun around and made out with in the parking lot for a tick.
I LOVE…that at about 5:20, me and Scarlett will be boarding a plane to New York City to see Wicked tomorrow. On BROADWAY. And going BACKSTAGE! Stupidly excited about this people. Like may just pee myself a little. That’s forgiveable in this instance, right?
I LOVE..that I’ve managed to clean my house from top to bottom while home sick. It helped beat the boredom and keep my mind off cramps. We’re talking sweeping, mopping, dusting, organizing, and general pick-up.
I LOVE…that I am now guaranteed to graduate cum laude and if I can get A+ in my last two classes this semester, magna cum laude.
I LOVE…that while I had so much time at home, I made a bunch of new friends on the Internets and especially around 20SB. You guys are absolutely fantastic. To everyone who sent me get well wishes, suggestions on books, tech help, and just generally made me smile or laugh, you rock.
I LOVE…that my seniors made me a huge welcome back card when they heard I would likely be back to work today. Considering how much work I’ve had them do since August, this made me grin like an idiot.
Dear Friday, if I could I would totally motorboat you. That is just how awesome today is.
Keep up the good work.