Insomnia Log 6

Readers,

I owe you some more blog posts about my spring road trip but you aren’t going to get them right away. Soon enough. I’ve at least been thinking about writing them recently as opposed to not thinking about them recently. Patience.

I wish I had patience. I think at my core is rage that I try to prevent from feeling. I nod and say, “Mm,” when I really want to say, “No, that’s not correct,” or, “That’s terrible.” My good friend P and I talked on the phone last night and agreed we need to stop more pointless conversation in its tracks. Simply halt the speaker and say, “OK. We can talk more about that after you change your shirt. Why are you wearing that shirt? Why did you think that was a good idea?” Flip something pointless on its head with something equally irrelevant. If they actually change their shirt they care enough to deserve your attention.

I haven’t felt so angry in probably months, which might be what is causing this sleeplessness and stream of unedited words. Dawna Markova says, “Rage is passion without choice.” It feels like a spit of gasoline into the engine. If Color Theory (more on this another time) is to be trusted, and I think it is, rage is composed of the colors black and red, where black represents one’s own ambition and power and red represents one’s emotions. We use words like “ardent” to describe someone’s passion, and the feel is fiery, which is also very red. Red is about creativity and emotion; I just worry about its pairing with my own ego and power, manifesting in anger. It’s a potent fuel, no doubt.

I’ve continued with my mostly daily haiku on my Twitter. I missed up to five days at a time, but I keep coming back to it. I like the challenge. For my grandpa, for whom we just this weekend held a memorial service, I dedicate every day of the remaining half of the year that I will write a haiku, a poetic (thus red, but controlled, with choice) expression to help channel the anger I have that he’s gone. I felt that this weekend. I clutched my magic egg (a lucky charm, more on this another time) as “Taps” played, my throat tight with strained tracheal cartilage and my face a frown canyon. I looked at some of the treasure maps my grandpa and I made year after year for a forest that no longer stands where now rest pole barns and snowmobiles. I miss him so much. I want to live a life as great as his and often worry I won’t. I want to walk in the woods again with him, him pointing out the morning dew beading on old spider webs below ferns, white light and long shadows abundant. It can’t happen. I remember collapsing in front of an angel statue the last time I saw him, fingernails piercing palms, so angry that anything could take someone so great away. I want to keep channeling this rage in a creative way.

There’s another reason I started writing these haiku. One that I’m now ashamed to admit but think I must admit at this point. Most longer term projects of mine kick off because I’m upset that someone doesn’t reciprocate my feelings for them. I created Behold The Cheese as a way to cope with longing for someone. I learned Graph Theory and developed Color Theory from it as a way to take my mind off someone else. And I took on the poetic challenge as a way to deal with rage about my grandpa and rage about someone who left me with feelings of withdrawal. I directed so much of the latter anger toward myself for months after I stopped seeing her, after conversation previously held everyday abruptly stopped. I believed that there were things wrong with me that were keeping me all alone, that I wasn’t funny enough or strong enough or that I was too obsessive. I compulsively ate and drank without realizing I was over my limit. I sighed, so much. I created such a narrative about this person in my head that thoughts continued on far longer than I expected them to. I felt haunted. I kept thinking of reasons why this person was justified and I needed fixing.

I don’t need fixing. I’m not broken. (I sense my own power in writing that.) I don’t want to diminish myself anymore. I don’t want one person’s rejection of me to bring down my esteem and affect relationships that matter far more. I deserve love.

P asked me if this person liked me for the reasons he likes me (that is, for my real self). I didn’t have a good answer back then. The answer is probably no. The people who really like me say, “Never change.” They tell me they miss me and wish I were there.

I am also angry about some comments I’ve received on my appearance and beliefs. I received both from a teenager who probably doesn’t know any better, but that doesn’t defuse my immediate emotional response. I don’t like being called “Jesus” mockingly, especially because Jesus probably didn’t look anything like my mostly Nordic self. I don’t like being called “Sasquatch” while I’m staring at my grandfather’s urn about to be buried, the last time I would ever see his physical form, though dust. He said, “Whoa, it’s Saquatch! Let me get your picture!” pulling out his phone while I was sobbing and sullen about my fallen hero. I’m sorry, that’s disgusting. That’s asocial. I don’t ever like hearing gay jokes, but especially not from a punk teenager as I’m celebrating marriage equality with my Facebook profile picture. I hope this person reads this when he grows up and realizes what a shit he was.

I have a tendency to get carried away. “Matting out” is the present participle coined for this excited behavior. I can be vocal and loud about things. Some people like it, some people cover their ears. I think it’s one of my greatest strengths and a simultaneous weakness (but I believe strengths and weaknesses are intricately tied). It sometimes leads me to think more about another person than can be reasonably reciprocated, which leads to me being alone. But it sometimes also leads to one hundred something haiku produced so far this year, or over 5,000 miles traveled across these United States in two weeks. Sometimes it leads to twenty mile walks which result in deep insights to my brain and brewing of lavish life philosophies. Sometimes it leads me to inexplicable sobbing, or at least looking out windows for hours wistfully. Sometimes it leads to lengthy rants like this one.

The more I use up this anger rocket fuel in creative projects, the better.

Black and red all over,

Art

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