an excerpt from email i wrote this morning:
sometimes it’s funny how alone i feel, in a good way, day after day. especially when i commute into the city. everyone has such different lives, such different experiences. i look for frank chiu and his crazy signs every day because i feel “here, this is someone who is alone too, but happy” and i feel that connection with him.
i guess “alone” is not the right word because i am well-liked and much-loved, so there should be a word for it, when you can sense the whole of yourself outside of the experience of others. this is a really good place for me to be in. i did not exist without other people before. i was not a discrete being, always flowing into and out of how others thought of me, which is funny because if you ask people who have known me a long time they see me always as an independent and willful creature. it was as if all that time i saw they wanted me to be that and so i was that. but i wasn’t.
this all sounds sad, and in response to your original “tell me why it makes me sad” i guess it always comes down to “because it’s true”. when i know something for true my eyes always tear up, i feel that inimitable lump in my throat, and it’s sad, yes, because it’s tangible, an expression of mortality or maybe just humanity.
every single hour of every day i think about why we are here, what am i doing, and i am concerned that i won’t ever figure it out. (i should have become a philosopher because i hear this is what they do all day long.) in some ways i am your exact opposite: where there is peacefulness and wholeness in you, i am constantly meandering from paranoid thought to morbid thought, never resting on any one belief or code for long, yearning to be filled by whatever is supposed to be my own soul. but i can’t find it. i don’t know where it is. i’ve tried several different metaphors in the forms of religions and i can’t convince myself that they’re real. i am terrified of wasting my time searching for someone god who does not really exist after all. and yet i am not satisfied leaving the god-thoughts to other, more spiritual people.
aren’t we all looking for some sense to it all? i wonder about this a lot too. i wonder if my friends spend a lot of time thinking about where they will go when the party’s over, or about nothingness and what implications that void has. sometimes i feel alone and not in the good way, the alone that curls me in upon myself like a waterbug, and i’m just rolling, just rolling with it. aren’t we all?
sometimes i miss being afraid. at least fear is something to cling to, something to blame and something to need.
but if i knew what it was all about, if i really knew, and didn’t like it? at least in not knowing there is the possibility of … anything. it’s the idea that keeps crushes secret, and inventions unpatented. if there is no definition then it can be anything you want it to be.
what i want at the end: to know i loved people. that i really loved them, which means that i really knew them, understood them, took the time to learn even a little of what it meant to be them. i think that knowledge would be enough reward, no matter what comes immediately after that. if i can get there, it’s not all just coincidence or chaos.
but if that’s it, why do i sabotage myself?