I haven't said a word on here in months. I was having a conversation last night with Shay, telecart about honesty online, and I think that we both (and most of my friends) were lucky to come of age after technology made connecting with others possible, but before EVERYONE was on the internet including parents, younger cousins, and employers, before the act of blocking a website had political ramifications.
Shay has said, rightly that the internet is "no longer cosa nostra". And it's true. This sense of home, and displacement, of being a stranger everywhere, have been recurring themes in our discussions of late. Actually our relationship (we've been together over a half year now, I believe) feels like a forum thread, a movie, and a novel simultaneously, but moreover like one long freewheeling discussion with breaks to work and sleep and dick off on the Actual Internet. Theres a sense of natural interweaving between topics, technology, politics, philosophy, gender to be very broad, and although its frustrating to see these great discussions leave no residue (as they would online), it's exciting to see how they evolve, and I find the evidence lived, and internalized instead of documented. It feels reflective, not in the least bit forced... So it would seem I've found someone decent to be dragged kicking and screaming into the 21st Century with. The constant online presence, and being highly visible at the periphery of my friends (Livejournal, Subkultures and IRL) gives the whole enterprise this sense of deep familiarity juxtaposed with strangeness, that feels like rediscovery or deja-vu. It's hard to describe.
The safety I'm extended, and the sheer magnitude of his good-naturedness is very humbling. I struggle with a sense of worthiness, especially given the dark legacy of my family and my own spotty and drama-filled history. And the carnage I come dragging with me from previous lives, which in terms of "baggage" feels like asking if an entire mangled 747 jet is OK as "carry-on". I'm a little nervous and frankly uncomfortable, but I'm crossing my fingers that it's the good kind of discomfort, where you (as the 'courage wolf' meme would put it...) "Bite off more than you can chew... THEN CHEW IT.
It's funny, I came to try and reconnect with my lost-self, but I end up talking about my relationship instead. As important as he is to me (and always has been, for years, though at a safer distance).. There's a lot of stuff I need to look backwards, and face head-on, and I hope maybe recovering my sense of authenticity through writing, through sharing, through my good old transparent self, can be recovered.
I feel like the past years, the past 5 years really, have been a big wound, a huge chasm, each rip deeper and darker than the others, but that it's a chasm that wants to heal itself.
So many wonderful things have happened this year. Starting with the most recent -
I watched Steve and Sara get married... it was so beautiful!
I saw Travisz and Yanick and Eric and Mark and .. the list just goes on... and there was so much positive energy there, it was like he'd brought us all together the way he brough Steven and Sara, and the grief turned into a bond, and a sense that we were all bound by our good fortune more than our bad. It was a wonderful night, we were very honored to be part of watching two beautiful people who absolutely get it right share some of the "good stuff" of life with their friends, that we could celebrate in it with them, just .. wow! There are no words.
I went to Kinetik, in Montreal. I saw Paul, he squished me so hard I thought I would die! and Brad, and Bea and met new friends and old, musicians I admired already and would come to admire by the end, the list goes on! And after posting my pictures, I made my peace with Facebook, as everyone got tagged, even famous people :P And Shay and I went to meet my cousin Jonathan who is flourishing so well in Montreal after finishing his engineering degree at McGill.
So much live music lately. We've seen Massive Attack, we've seen Covenant, and Pearl Jam. On top of stuff around Kinetik.
We have tickets to Atari Teenage Riot at the end of the summer.. CRAZY!
I paid off all my Credit Card debt.
I plugged in all my debts, student loans and otherwise, to Mint, and got a real birds-eye view of my financial picture.
Its really the sense of panic and closing in about that which prompted me to come here and try and focus on something more positive.. And for the time being I will try and keep it positive.
Biggest of all: I WENT TO ISRAEL. Words can't express what it was like, I did not go for religious reasons but the trip had a depth of importance that defies everyday explanation. I loved every minute, and honestly it felt like the only thing missing was work, and on a deeper level, time, as I wished I'd been there sooner. I wish I could have shared my younger self with Shay, all the enthusiasm and imagination that is feeling challenged with all the responsibilities of the now, and cleaning up the mess that bad relationships and death and school and financial struggle has left. I'm glad that we knew each other as friends back then, even in an algorithmic sense, which is to say, guessing between the bits and bytes. I went to Israel because I've owed it to Shay for almost as many years as I've known him and certainly since 2006 when he visited. Honestly I wish I'd just have packed myself in his suitcase back then and been done with it.
I started taking pictures. Andres helped me get started, and it gave my soul a voice, it brought light into a dark place, gave me the chance to know myself again, to know myself obliquely, refracted via single lens reflex mirror, a reason to engage with the world, to turn unfamiliar corners, and to re-envision the familiar itself.
My 'work', if you want to call it that - is here.
There's more history here, so much, beneath the surface, much of it dark and complex and scary. I'll get to it in due time, and when I win the internal struggle against its having been, I hope I will have some of my honesty back.
I think the current theme of my life is going to be reaching backwards through the chasm of years, and gaps and through the horror, pulling what was good, and bringing it forward. It's scary, I forgot what it was like to try and make and keep friends, having been trapped and isolated in a violent, impoverishing relationship, with so much unresolved grief and sadness. And I'm a goth for christs sake, this shit was always pretty hard.
Anyway I think it's good to leave with a quote of Lebbeus Woods. I kept thinking of the reaching-back I want to do, to take all of Lorraine, the imperfect grades, pick back up the missed opportunities, the dusty but patient friendships waiting on the shelf for hands to pick them up, the music, the words, the art, all of it and hold it without shame, up to the light for what it is. Not to write off, as I'd initially thought, the past decade like a totalled car. It's reaching into the past, and the future, and trying to make something more contiguous out of it, more harmonic. "Healing" sounds so new agey, and I don't think I'll get it right anyway, I think it'll be an imperfect effort at an imperfect process, but I'm willing to stand up and give it a shot, as many shots as it takes. It's not really a conscious effort, it's happening and its slow but it feels deep, and like it carries an inertial momentum.
I leave whatever is left of you, my valued readership, with a quote from Lebbeus Woods:
"The scar is a deeper level of reconstruction that fuses the new and the old, reconciling, coalescing them, without compromising either one in the name of some contextual form of unity. The scar is a mark of pride and of honor, both for what has been lost and what has been gained. It cannot be erased, except by the most cosmetic means. It cannot be elevated beyond what it is, a mutant tissue, the precursor of unpredictable regenerations. To accept the scar is to accept existence. Healing is not an illusory, cosmetic process, but something that -by articulating differences- both deeply divides and joins together."
— Lebbeus Woods