Well, I’m not yet thirty. But it started a bit more than a year ago, when I was turning 27, with a hellishly vivid feeling of mortality. (No, not morbid thoughts, exactly. Feelings of mortality. I’m told that’s normal when one is approaching thirties.) Today, I’ve been crying a lot, you could say regretting past mistakes, but more regretting my current inability to move past them.
Professionally, I don’t have that much complaints. It could be better, but it could be a lot worse too.
My demons have always laid on my personal side. In the past 14 years, I’ve made choices. They haven’t always been informed choices, they have sometimes, quite often in fact, been reactions against my own perceptions of my own past actions. I suppose the gist is that I am terribly lonely. I have a couple of people I call friends. My relationship with my parents is in order. But…
When I was younger, I had eyes for women. I was friends with many women. I’m not positive, but there were several, along the years, who probably were even interested. But it never clicked. Perhaps I was just then making eyes at someone much further away and I didn’t see the one sitting beside me. Perhaps, had I, or she, not moved out of town, things might have been different. There was one that I probably almost stalked. I’m not proud of that, and in fact, the shame of that memory is probably one of the things that is holding me back now. In some cases, clearly one-sided ones, my inability to reign emotions properly caused quite a few awkward situations. I remember them, too, with shame.
So I’ve learned to grow a thick shell around myself. It helps in dealing with professionals in the proper manner, regardless of their plumbing. It is ia useful skill. But I notice that the thick shell repels those who clearly would like to know me better (there have been a few; I’m not saying it would’ve ever gone beyond friendship, but even that is out of the question when I’m unable to relate). And when I finally figure out how to get out of that damned shell, they’re long gone. In some cases, well enough gone that I don’t even know their names. In others, it’s just the window of opportunity that has gone. But it’s enough. And it doesn’t help that I have this huge barrel around me which I don’t seem to be able to rid myself of.
And so, I come back to this day. I read Weber & Ringo’s We Few (note that it’s book 4 in a series). Maybe I’m just a sucker for martial romances, I don’t know, but they often affect me. But none has affected me this much before.
I’ve been hurting like hell after I finished that book. The ending is so beautiful that it seems to have opened some old wounds, and I’ve been crying. And I curse my shell, the one that is so useful at the office, the one I took several years to build around me just so that I could do my job properly.
I don’t know. Writing this has helped a little. But I’m afraid I’m going to regret posting this in the morning. (And I wonder how this keeping awake is going to wreck havoc with my teaching tomorrow afternoon.)