Thursday, December 17, 2009

2000 miles (people I miss....)

I miss people. I get existentially lonely sometimes, and begin to ruminate about a person or persons who I miss because they're not in my life anymore, and I liked them. Illness does that to you; it takes people. Sometimes, it takes the best people. They don't know what the matter is, and they don't understand your behavior. They think you are insane, and they don't want to deal with your weird mood fluctuations, bizarre ideas, and dangerous actions. So they leave.

I've never been one who had tons of friends. I'm shy; that's just my personality. I also have incurably low self-esteem, so it's hard to make friends. But I did have some close friends who are all gone now due to the illness, and a couple of boyfriends who weren't around long at all, but might have been if things had been different.

Then there was the main person. My person, as Meredith Grey would call it, on Grey's Anatomy (I probably shouldn't admit to watching that, but oh well). Her "person" was her best friend, Christina, on the show. My person was this guy. I wrote about him here, a while ago, but I deleted most of those posts because they were embarrassing, and also, too personal for the blogosphere. To sum it up, this guy was my closest friend, but it was long-distance, and not much of a "normal" friendship. And I also was basically convinced that we were soul mates. It's not just that I fell for this guy, but that I developed this entire fantasy world about him and I having this romance, which we never had. My fantasy worlds started when I was a kid, and I suppose one could either say that they were normal exhibits of creativity, or that they were early signs of psychosis, depending on how one views mankind.

The fantasies go like this: There's the intelligent, somewhat attractive, friendly young woman (or girl, because I started these thoughts when I was a kid), and then there is a close best friend, and some other friends, and, most importantly, there is The Guy. I referred to the guy in previous posts here as Mr. Wonderful, but now I think that term sounds a bit to sarcastic. The guy, in my head, would be named something like Neil or Ethan. The girl was always Chloe (if I had a daughter, I'd name her Chloe). Well, at least those were the names in my young adult years. I think the names were different in childhood. So, anyway, this was all a fantasy world, a creative process that I used as an outlet. There was never any harm in it at all. Being really shy, this fantasy world helped me to not be as lonely as I would have been without it. I spent a lot of time alone, thinking up stories about my characters and their happy-yet-always-tragic lives. Very emo, and "Twilight" and all that - when I was young.

Then later, there came The Guy. I met this guy, and somehow, for whatever reasons I can't really explain in a blog post, he became the real, live "Neil" or "Ethan". His name was a different name, but he was the person who I believed was my soul mate. I thought that meeting him was destiny, that we were meant to be a couple. At first the guy said the same things, and then later, he made it really clear he wasn't interested in that kind of relationship, partly, probably, because he lived in another state.

Over the past 12 years, the guy was a major focus of my thoughts, my energy, my life direction....the guy meant a whole lot to me. He never realized how much he meant to me, and will never know, I guess. But there was also a secondary issue going on, which was a problem. Whilst I became psychotic and developed Schizophrenia, I began to believe that people could read my thoughts, that I had psychic connections with certain people (particularly The Guy), and that my emotions could be felt and understood by other people even though I did not outwardly express them. So I could be sitting around in Virginia, thinking about The Guy, who was living in Connecticut, and think that he knew what I was thinking. Later, I became convinced he was one of my Illuminati/Satanic Cult/Masonic "mind control" programmers. I thought he was my handler. I believed that for quite a while. I was not medicated, was totally psychotic, and did not know that I had Schizophrenia (and if anybody did bother to tell me, during one of my numerous hospital vacations, to this day I do not recall that).

So now, fast forward to 2009. I am not psychotic anymore. I have no contact with The Guy anymore. He ended that completely a year and a half ago, and I don't blame him for it. I haven't tried to contact him since then, because I'm not that much of a masochist, and because I really do care about The Guy, who is obviously perfectly happy without me being in his life in any way.

But then the ache comes. "Lonely" is a lame word. The feeling an isolated person gets when theuy're burning desire is to have a connection with another living human being, is more than "loneliness". It's angst. It's pain. It aches. So I have a hard time sometimes with my thoughts about The Guy. I miss my old friends, too. I miss the young women who I loved dearly as close friends, and who all disappeared after they couldn't deal with my mental illness anymore. I never lived near any of them, but we became close over the internet, and I met two of them in person. We corresponded all the time for years. Then that was over. I still miss them. I don't blame them for cutting me out of their lives. I was mentally ill, and I did not know what was wrong with me. I did weird, ridiculous, confusing things, and said things that were inappropriate and bizarre. I was needy and scared and sometimes absolutely terrified, and I reached out too many times to those friends for help.

But, I have gotten used to life without those friends. One of them is still a dear friend today, and I appreciate that more than I can express, because she was a witness to all of my bizarre behavior too, but it didn't scare here away.

I have never gotten used to life without The Guy, or thoughts of The Guy, or the basic fable that I've lived with about the omnipotence of romantic love and how it is the cure-all for everything. I've never quite gotten that out of my head. I've also never stopped thinking about the funny things they guy said, the interests he had which I liked, the intelligence he possessed, and my grandiose, delusional conviction that we are soulmates.

I don't know, honestly, how to express how much this has negatively affected my life. But it has. A lot. I have these times where I would give anyting just to get an email from the guy saying "hello". Anything. And that, I know, is simply pathetic. But, in some ways, I was addicted to this guy. I trusted him implicitly and didn't truest many other people. I still don't trust many people. I lived with my last boyfriend for nearly two years, and we were together for three years. After we broke up, I missed him for about a year. And then I was over it. I never really miss him at all now. But I still miss The Guy, most likely because the guy and I were never actually involved in person so we never got to see the nitty, gritty, ugly humanity of each other, and the flaws that might have made the other person seem less ideal. In my head, the guy was The Guy, though, and sometimes, more often than I'd like to admit, I feel that I was meant to be connected to him, and I wish we were at least still pen-pals, if nothing else.

I've dated numerous people over the years. I was, before I gained 100 pounds, relatively attractive, and didn't have a hard time meeting guys. I met a number of them, but none that I felt was a real "match", except for two I dated (one the ex I just mentioned), and none that I felt was a perfect match except The Guy.

I don't know if I'll ever get him out of my mind. I think about the people I miss more often, I guess, around holidays, and times when people spend more time together with friends and family. I see my family, and I care about them of course, but I do wish that I had more friends in my life. And I do hope that, before I die, I have some kind of life partner with whom I can exist.

("2000 Miles" is a song by the Pretenders.)


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  3. Lena,
    Thanks for your insightful comment. I don't always respond to comments. I know some bloggers do, but it's just not a habit I have. But I wanted to say, I totally agree about how we become more enchanted and obssess with someone when we have less actual contact with the person. It's so easy to develop this fantasy universe in your mind which is centered around some individual who you completely idealize to the Nth degree, until you think of them as a person who they really aren't at all. It's harder to do that with someone who you eat dinner with or sleep with or talk to regularly, even. I never would have gotten so obsessed with the guy I mentioned if I had ever actually lived near him and spent time with him. I'm certain of that. When you see people as they really are - as complete beings, flaws and all - you don't become as obsessed, in my experience. Of course there are a lot of stalkers and abusers of women who are obsessed with them and see them regularly too, but I think it is different when you're not an abuser or a violent person, or, frankly, a man. Women get more entranced by the stupid notion of romantic love because everything in our society tells women to do that. We are all products of society, I think, at least to some degree. I know that without my heinously low self-esteem, and my feeling that life would somehow be complete and perfect with the right partner - I wouldn't have gotten so bonkers over some guy I didn't really spend time with and I wouldn't have the habit of thinking of him twelve years after I met him, particularly after we stopped even being friends.

    Honestly, I think I could write a book about this subject. It has been a major aspect of my life, but because it's embarrassing, I never talk about it with anybody. Most people who know me do not know about that guy at all. It was my guilty secret for years. I guess, by talking about it here, I am trying to break that pattern. I talked about it here before, but then I was still too obsessed, so I had to delete what I had written, thinking that it was humiliating and made me look pathetic. Which it did. It really was pathetic. But it was also a real part of my life, so to delete it entirely from a blog where I discuss my life is rather dishonest and not true to who I actually am.

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  6. This was very good. I the emotions and situations that you are channeling here I feel and can relate to in my own life. My girl friend has been studying aboard for the past semester and this situation has been so difficult for our relationship and particularly on me. I am a very shy person and have been dealing with my depression and self injury scars that have left me very isolated and remote from most of the world. And while me and my girl friend both have our own emotional and mental problems, I feel that I grow more obessed with her every day that we are a part. Thankfully however, I feel that she is the one and cant wait to see her. It scares me how much I guess I love her, because she is my only friend and the only person who understands the pain I have seen and lived through and the struggle I deal with. Not many people understand whats it like to feel like a being from another planet because of your past, but she does I guess and it helps me get by. I feel that we are all products of society to some extent, and thats why I feel the way I feel,but I dont feel that we are products of society because many people are not willing to accept people who have problems and issues like me. Being African-American and a victim of self injury and suffering from depression has created me as a product of my very broken home, but not one that society understands or wishes to accept.


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