i am caught in what seems to be an eternal question, one addressed by religion and philosophy and poetry and psychology and the thoughts of probably half the world's polulation at any one time.
i was reading though chuck's new and improved pages, surveying the changes he is going thru, trying to come to understand an enigmatic friend. he had written up thoughts, and an essay on our drive across the country this summer, in which i am mentioned because, well, i was there. hearing someone else's thoughts on who you are, what is going on inside your head, can be disturbing. "is that really what i seem like to people?", "do they understand me better than i do myself?"
this is not simple neurosis, overthought, paranoia. it is a question of confidence, memory, satisfaction with your path in life.
(to be clear, it is not chuck's opinion that i am concerned about, but rather how i reacted, how my gut did a little flip.)
recently i have, with an understated joy, been more confident in myself. ya, it sounds like some sort of pyschological confession, and i'm sure there's some better way to express it, but i am simple in this. here comes the confession of the past... i have always searched for the approval of others (who hasn't), for respect. a wish to be taken seriously. if people cared enough about me to take the time to understand my life philosophy, i wouldn't have to defend it all the time. i could stop fighting, and find my own tranquility. there can be no fault found in the desire for tranquility.
to make this concrete, my recent confidence had come from a social epiphany of sorts... i have been able to give to my friends, and they have taken and enjoyed. that is no self-righteous pleasure, it is as true to the form of friendship as one can get.
then today i realize that the old fears are still there... am i not expressing myself the right way? do i still search for respect? (by writting this do i seem too analytical?)
i'm also not used to people actually describing me... i've tried to be so low key that i would remain somehow un-catagorized, un-quantifiable, perhaps enigmatic myself. so rarely am i a character in other people's stories. i was there, but was i really? and i can't decide whether this is something i want to do, or just do.
so at lunch i realize, i must respect myself. in this i can find grace. and not need to fight.
so now you've seen the inside of my brain... i don't even know why i write it. some kinda catharsis or something. i think i'm breaking free, but i'm still censoring myself since i know my friends read this, some of them at least. i contemplated stopping today, not linking this to my main page... no longer publicizing my angst and worries... but then, i wouldn't get to publicize the happy stuff either... write to me, if you're out there, if you care at least a little bit... (man, what am i asking for... am i crazy?)
i was walking to my car today and saw some kids, maybe third graders, in their trendy jackets and oversized pants, chasing each other around a small tree. as i got closer, i could here them saying, "shit. shit."
sometimes it just don't make sense. or else it makes all too much sense.