Monday, January 16, 2012

Yet Again.

I feel like every post I write is the same. And it's been like this for ever.

Yet, every time, it seems new as I the first.

It's always been this. My hatred of myself, my desperate need for someone else to love me. I've been journaling for seven years, and it's always been this.

At church today, someone I was sitting with at lunch mentioned how one of his friends had been stabbed 16 times in "The Fort" (the mostly student housing area where I live, adjacent to some lower SES areas). I've known friends to be shot at, raped, mugged, and so on just walking through it back to their homes.

So I went home this evening and I thought about it. Because, see, I walk home alone in the middle of the night in The Fort. It's one of the self-harms I allow myself, the risk without actually having to hurt myself. I've fantasized about being attacked a fair amount. But today was something new. I wondered "What would make me finally feel like I've atoned?" A scare definitely wouldn't do it. Sexual assault would probably just make me hate myself worse. I settled on paralysis below the waist; above it I'd probably just prefer to die anyway. My mind drifted to being deaf, blind, mute. And I think I could do one, but if I was deaf and blind I think I'd feel as if I trapped in some kind of tomb. It would be terrifying. And I sat with that a few moments, idly wondering if perhaps I'd be in the process of being mugged when somehow I'd manage to either run into or get pushed into an oncoming car.

These fantasies mostly make me feel better (although the blind/deaf/mute combination just left me terrified). I either want to die or be significantly damaged while not being a burden on others. Because I need to keep working, keep trying to make my existence worthwhile to *someone*.

This, of course, is nothing new. What is new, though, is how increasingly I seem to have it together externally. I'm a smooth-motherfucker when I want to be. There's an elegance, an empathy, a light joy and positive regard to me that just seems *good*. I'm the person that people with trust issues talk to. I'm the person who listens not in a "passively absorb what 'other' says" but "actively engage in communicating self."

And I could be this person constantly if I had a consistent source of validation. But I am fucking hard to reach. You have to make a conscious effort to burrow, to fling yourself at my walls and keep trying til you make it in (you will make it in, though). But, of course, that's rare. I've met two people who can do it consistently and a handful more who can do it if they try.

And that makes everything really lonely. Fuck, I just want to talk to someone who cares about me. Like, reaches out for me to get to the place where things actually hurt. I don't need my problems solved; I know how to do that. I want *love*.

But because I hate myself, I can't get it. I'm stuck as an ancillary companion, a third, a fifth wheel. And, increasingly, I'm realizing that until the hate changes, the lack of love won't either.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

NeoAnnual Progress Report

Three years ago, I was staring down my final semester of undergrad. Staying in bed all day, my girlfriend would sometimes come over at 3:00p or 3:30p and crawl in with me because attempting to get me up was largely futile. I was preparing to teach high school, a career I had more trepidation than passion about, but it was safe and I was anything if not safe.

Two years ago, I was working my part-time job over winter break. I could not sleep late, and that was wonderful. I had been single for a bit more than two months, and it still stung poignantly (although not nearly as bad as it had). And, the last week or two, I had decided to finally transition genders. I came out to my immediate family around this time. And although I dreaded returning to teaching high school, I felt significant hope for the first time in my life.

One year ago, all of my applications had been sent in for graduate school. I was staying in bed until 4p or 5p, going to bed at 7:00a as the sun came up. I had just driven to Memphis to see the young woman who I loved more than I thought love was possible, and a few days before the last day of the year, I had three hours with her that encompassed the happiest I've ever been. I had been on hormones for eight months, had my chosen name legally and been full time for two months, and there were moments where I felt overjoyed simply to be alive. [And moments where I felt I was haunted by a stain of self that would never truly leave]

Today, I find myself in graduate school. Based upon one client, I love my chosen career. Based upon one semester, I adore my cohort and I appreciate most of my classes. I look in the mirror and see Juliet. I have increasingly closer friends who I really believe truly care about me.

I'm still single. I still find myself staying in bed for too, too long. I still don't eat well, don't take care of my environment, don't regard myself particularly highly. The notes from one year ago aside, last year contained some of the absolute most painful and stressful times in my lifetime. And they ended in a way that will deny me closure until I can figure out how to conjure it for myself. I have motivation problems. I have significant anxiety. I have monstrous fears of and intense desires for intimacy. I have a lot of work to do.

But, overall, considering where I've been, I'm in a decent place. All I have to fear and dread are research deadlines. And, truly, that's a lesser concern that I hope I can figure out. I have a lot of things to look forward to this year. And, if I keep on progressing, I think I might find a bit of contentment along the way.