They say introverts are better and enjoy writing more than talking. Well I guess that’s reason #76 for why I am an introvert. None less than when it comes to matters that rest heavy on my heart, Emotions are one of the most difficult things to put into words.
Right now on my heart is my friends and my family and particularly how hard it seems to maintain a strong and healthy relationship with them. I feel like I’ve spent my whole adult life pursuing this. Dreaming of this. It all started when I was 17 and while being abused heavily from my mother, I felt that it was best that I leave my house (even better hopefully it would discourage my mom from being so brutal with my younger siblings!). I remember being kicked out that sunny day, not long after school was out, and riding the bus with my garbage bag full of clothes and cds. I had so much deep seated hate within me then, primarily hate towards myself. Hated that lead to depression and feelings of no self-worth. Music and cigarettes, its all I had. Survival tools I had picked up in middle school. Why can I not relate to my family more? Why does it seem so difficult for them to see the real me? And even more difficult for me to express it? Why am I the black sheep? Why does my mom beat me so angrily? Why can’t she stop?
I believed I was the cause for all of this. Over the years I went in and out of homelessness, met thousands of people and explored the bigger world around me in ways I had always dreamed of and many in which I didn’t. Throughout it all I tried my best to keep in touch with my family. Whether I had one dollar or $300 (normally just one dollar) I would travel by bike and bus and visit all of them in hopes of bettering things. Reconnecting in ways that were seemingly cutoff so long ago…
There are many heavy emotions one can feel through self-loathing and destitution. It is a completely unique feeling though to swallow the reality that this might be “as good as it gets”, as Jack Nicolson suggested.
Throughout it all, if nothing else, I learned one thing. It is difficult. Difficult to maintain relations with family and friends as an adult. Difficult to try and rekindle a flame that you can’t remember what made it start burning to begin with. Difficult to try and maintain an abundance of emotions to give others, when living for so long without even enough for yourself.
But despite it all, I am glad that I maintained my integrity to the best of my ability through the whole process. Though often walking in fog and darkness I have always held on tightly to what I believed was right. In the final analysis I can be seen as cold, distant, uncaring of others, or any other negative and dismissive thing that might honestly be felt by someone. But I won’t even grow to be like Boston George, who in his later years regretted how he treated others, or is incessant selflessness that he constantly fed throughout the prime of his life. I won’t be like Wesley Snipes in New Jack City where somehow he convinced his brothers to ride for him in a life of crime, only to become so enamored with power to where he turned his back on everyone. I understand that in the bigger scheme of things, I would never forgive myself for doing something like that. I think spending the rest of my life learning how to love myself again is much more worthy and rewarding of a pursuit.
And still, my family is my heart and my friends are too. So however painful it may be, I will continue to try and have healthy and happy and strong relationships with the only people in my life that have ever met anything to me.