I’m going to start this post by linking a really heavy video (be warned). Some will find this video to be beautiful while others may find it depressing. (I am in most definitely in the former category).
This past weekend I was fortunate enough to get to go to my co-worker and friend Shay’s wedding reception. They rented a beautiful house on the outskirts of the Castro and the reception wasn’t the typical “traditional” type (whatever that means) -it was more like a food and mingle sort of reception rather than the “toss the bouquet + dance the funky chicken” type (Lucky for everyone because I do a mean funky chicken!). There were lots of therapist type people around (Shay is a therapist) -plenty of people for me to talk to. There were also lots of toddlers around (in part, I’m guessing, because Shay and Luke have a 2 year old daughter, Sophia.) Sophia is easily one of the most precious kids that I have ever seen in my life. It was a total joy to watcher her wander around and be a character -and then to watch Shay and Luke interact and respond to her. As one of our fellow co-workers put it -Shay and I are “cut from the same cloth” (i.e., we “click” in a certain way that is hard to describe.) It felt as though watching Shay and Sophia gave me a window into the joys that I have ahead of me to look forward to. For those of you that recall my previous posts -one of my favorite places to be is to be standing before the start of a beautiful thing. The height of my joy happens when I have an entire beautiful experience waiting ahead of me -about to arrive, but just out of reach… kind of like the night before Christmas when you’re a kid. Anything is possible and the world feels like it is made of magic.
There was a moment during Shay’s wedding reception when Shay, me, and one of Shay’s friends were talking. Getting airtime with the bride at her own reception feels like you’re talking to a celebrity -it was great. I recall Shay’s friend saying “oh yeah, in college ALL of the guys wanted to date you. Everyone thought you were the best” -this does not surprise me that this was the case. What did surprise me, though, was Shay’s response: “Really? I wish I had known that. I was kind of in my own thing -I didn’t really realize that people felt that way.” Perhaps Shay was just being modest -but I don’t think that was the case entirely. I believe that she may have been so wrapped up in her world and experience of being a fallible human being that maybe she wasn’t aware (or totally aware, anyway) that people were swooning her left and right. This was an experience similar to one described by the girl I had my first and longest lasting crush with: “I don’t remember ever viewing myself as a hip awesome Patty-type of kid in those days. I had a hard time with self esteem for a very long time growing up. Nothing abnormal, but really common for young women I think.” Well surprise surprise. We’re all human…. wait a minute! We’re all human?! So that means, like, I shouldn’t count myself out about having a shoot with a woman who appears to have it all? I should go for it?! Wow! How excellent!
Several years ago a friend of mine (not a particularly close friend, but definitely a friend) inadvertently said something which, even though I’m sure it wasn’t her intention, hurt me and left me with the perpetual feeling of self doubt. I was talking about someone that I had a crush on and then my friend rolled her eyes and said “Seth, that girl would be more than you could handle.” … More than I could handle? What does that mean? I’m pretty sure she didn’t mean that I wasn’t good enough for her -but that was kind of how it felt. Heh. It’s funny how we carry these things around. I think I’m ready to let that hurt go. I’ve had enough positive and contrary experiences now that I feel like I may be ready to let that go. I started dating someone that I think is pretty remarkable, recently. I am overjoyed to rediscover that forgotten feeling of butterflies that you get at the sound of a new text message. This new girl has many fine qualities that I admire and I’m enjoying learning more about her -she has pleasantly surprised me several times now. All is well and good, however, it may be unclear how things will or will not continue forward. Namely, we have come to realize and agree that we are not each other’s “types” and we’re still sorting out if that may come to be a game changing factor. I know that I feel pretty clear that if things don’t end up romantic we both would enjoy a friendship (a conversion experience which, thankfully, I feel quite good at familiar with.) My recent experiences both with Shay and “Patty” have me feeling happy and relieved about people that I really admire not being out of my league. I feel great that I genuinely would be okay if I experience getting romantically turned away. The trick that I have learned is to just put yourself out there (don’t sell yourself short) and treat whatever does or doesn’t come back with fascination and gratitude. Accepting reality will only bring you to a path that will get you more quickly to what you want.
So basically right now I’m pretty in love with the universe right now. I’ve got another trick figured out which is to really honor and value spending time with the connections to people that you really love and appreciate. The past few years I have made this an increased priority and the results continue to make me grow and feel more satisfied with my life. I’ve got my core group of friends and I love them very much. It makes me so happy that at any time I can pick up my phone and send them a text and then get a response. I value my friends deeply -even the ones that I don’t see as often as I used to. Thank you guys.
For mothers day Bonnie and I went to see a movie called “Island City.” This was a surprisingly excellent comedy and I would urge you all to see it. It was very well constructed and very funny. It tells the story of a dysfunctional family that keeps all these secrets (some outrageous) from one another. The main character, the father of the family is a working class prison guard who secretly is taking an acting class for fear of his wife finding out and scoffing at his pitiful, unrealistic, and silly dream of wanting to be an actor. Through the course of the movie the father gets paired with an incredibly insightful and intriguing scene partner who pushes the father to challenge the family’s need for secrecy as well as the father’s self-doubt. Later in the film it is revealed that the scene partner is, actually, incredibly haunted and damaged from her own past -in a way she, herself, is living a life filled with lies. Through her witnessing of the father’s journey of having the family ultimately reveal all of it’s secrets the scene partner fades away like a ghost (either into annihilation, or perhaps to make right her own wrongs -it is delectably unclear.) I would urge you all to see this film -particularly if you are an actor or psychologist.