Everything that I have been through recently, all of the things I have experienced, it points to one thing.
I do care deeply about Leo, but he is not as significant for my life as I used to imagine.
When I was with Sam in San Francisco, I recognized how important it was for me to be with someone who was transparent and not that artificial. I was craving something more, something that I could only describe as a connection.
When I was with Donnie, I felt that same way- but he wasn’t as artificial. We weren’t connecting, though. Even though we talked about incredibly deep topics, and opened up to one another. We shared our stories of suicide attempts, our fucked up families, and emotionally unstable relationships. We talked late into the night about our deepest fears and desires. But, something major was missing for me. Something that I strive to give to other people.
When I was with Alfred, I neither connected with him or thought he was genuine. He masqueraded his expensive artwork and google home setup, but was so far gone from himself that I don’t think he was capable of emotionally opening up at that moment. I was missing it there, too.
When I was with T, we connected on a surface level, but I always felt misunderstood by him. I felt like he didn’t bother trying to understand who I was, and maybe it’s my own artificial bullshit, but I do believe that there is a lot to understand about me if someone tried. Both good and bad, I am a deep and flourishing river of things to be dissected and cherished. When I am in love with someone, that is what I do- I try to understand who they are. I try to understand what makes them tick, the in’s and out’s of what they desire, value, and their experiences. I care. That is how I care.
Last night with Leo, I was really drunk for a while. I forget everything that happened, but I know I opened up. I was really honest. I wasn’t thinking about what I was doing, my motivations were purely instinctual.
I realize now, I value being understood. Leo doesn’t understand me, he assumes a lot about me that I don’t believe is true. He has a really cynical world-view about everyone being selfish, and I don’t believe that is entirely true. I believe that we can become selfless. That is what I am trying to do.
I invited him to tell me all of the hurtful things that he assumed and believed about me, and he did. There was a lot. He called me naive, and I am. He said that I was manipulative, and I have been, but I work on that (with T, I wasn’t manipulative, which told me that I can be morally strong.) He started to tell me about Riley, and I had to stop him. At which point he said that it proved why people didn’t want to say hurtful things. He also called me emotional and said that he rolled his eyes internally because it seemed like I was trying too hard to prove my cynical worldview. Like I was just following the script of what I should be doing, aka being unoriginal in my efforts. He said he never felt what I felt for him, but that he cared. He cared and he was nice to me to help mask the fact that I was hurt, to try and make things better because that’s his nature.
There’s truth in what he said.
I wanted to be understood by someone else, the way I understood him. I wanted things to magically fall into place, for us to equally understand one another and all that la-di-da bullshit. That’s the naivety. The very real naivety. The part of me that would linger by Box Office after I got off work and giddily stare into his eyes before I would head home. I don’t hate that part of me, it hasn’t gotten me in trouble, it has just hurt me. I think that pain I have felt was an important part of the human experience.
Just like there’s truth in the manipulation- that’s a part of me that I actively extinguish now. She’s bitter. She’s angry. She’s mad at the world for always bringing injustice, where of course I am the Just and those who get everything are the Injust. It’s wrong. I do wrong. I am often much worse than I should be. And that part of me, she rips the photos of Vanessa in the breakroom. She gossips and weasels her way into drama. She is stern. She is a bitch. She thinks that being uptight will somehow achieve her end goals, that being cold and snarky will somehow garner respect. It doesn’t. Ripping up photos of other girls, gossiping, being cold, none of those things are respectable.
But Leo is right that it exists within me.
He’s right that I am emotional, but I want to understand it instead of getting rid of it. Too many people wander through life ignoring how they feel, and I won’t be one of them. I don’t want to be an explosion of emotions though. I want my emotions to be reasonable and in control. Perhaps that’s the next journey I will go on, emotional maturity.
He’s right that the world can be selfish and will consistently hurt you, and maybe this is just my naivety coming out to play, but I hold myself to a higher standard. I will work toward being morally in-tune with myself and my actions. Maybe I should adopt the whole notion that what I don’t know can’t hurt me. Maybe just for the time being.
I need to stop emotionally exhausting myself in situations that aren’t important.
What is important?
The moment? Family? Having a sense of purpose? Success, however it is that you define it? Love? Is love important? Are the mementos important?
I gauge what is important through my heart, what I am called to and called to do- that’s important. But I’m completely questioning it now because I thought my heart was calling for me to love Leo, I thought that it was important. I thought it was some version of destiny or fate calling to me to do what was supposed to be done.
I don’t regret listening to my heart. It’s never directed me in a path that ended up being wrong for me-
So what about Leo, then? Your heart called you there. Maybe not because you two were destined to fall in love with each other, but because he could teach you something important.
I know that I have improved who I am incredible amounts since I’ve had feelings for him. I have learned the truest parts of who I am, and the negative attributes that I have acquired through pain. I have become a more genuine me. The me I have always known I was- and I’m not done, I’m nowhere near finished on my path toward being a more sincere person. But I have made progress.
Maybe that’s why my heart was drawn to Leo. His influence in my life not only helped me grow, but it has helped me work on my biggest flaws. I could be the most giving person in the world, but if I continued to rip up the pictures of other girls and gossip and be nasty inside, I would never be genuine. If I continued to be concerned with what everyone thought about me, I would never be satisfied as I am.
I can admit when I am wrong, I am judgemental and insecure. My self-esteem takes it’s highs and lows seriously. When I am confident, nothing can tear me down. When I am insecure, it could take a slight breeze to push me over the edge.
I deal with depression, anxiety, suicidal tendencies, and I’m showing signs of an addictive personality. Those are my big ones, the things I haven’t really been able to tackle yet because I’m stuck on the manipulation and insecurity and loneliness. I know they are intertwined. I know my problems don’t exist separately in different realms. They are one and the same. One larger picture, one big issue that I couldn’t take on right now.
So instead of dealing with it, I indulge. Another guy, another night, another unidentified pill, another glass, another emotionally charged writing session, another breakdown. What it comes down to is that I’m unsure what the bigger problem is, I don’t know how to help myself because I can’t say what’s wrong. I just know that I want to be understood, I want company, I want stimulation, I want to love and be loved.
My bed smells like him. His presence is still in this room, shadows have been cast into a timeless place that does not forget who has been here. His voice reverberates in the walls, it dances with the wind of the passing storm. You have been in this place. For me, love resounds.
There is beauty, even in this.