“I am lucky to have all the experiences in my life, especially the horrible ones, because I would be a shapeless person without them.”
From where I stand, I can account everything that is fucked up about myself to 3 defining moments. Every time I ask myself “What went wrong?” these 3 moments stick out more than anything.
Chronologically, the first would be when I was 13 and I got drunk. And I mean properly drunk. For want of a better word, I was slaughtered. Ironically, I can’t remember much of this fundamental moment in my life. I remember the blur, I remember letting go. I remember thinking “This is who I want to be, this is how it feels to be confident, and this is immeasurable fun.”For me, being inebriated was some kind of sick initiation into a world of the teenagers who were 3 or 4 years older than me. I don’t think it happened the next morning, but gradually I adopted the demeanor of someone much older and wiser than myself. The superiority I held was nothing more than a façade – a twisted way to hide my crippling insecurity, which I still carry with me even to this day.
The second moment would be when my first love told me he had been cheating on me with his ex-girlfriend. The ensuing bout of depression would be my worst so far. For some indescribable reason, I had chosen to place my hope and trust into this generally unremarkable 17 year old boy. Why him? I still couldn’t tell you. I definitely knew better looking boys who acted much more interested in me. And while still a virgin at the time, I was definitely not in short supply of sexual experience, so those first weeks of physical attraction were nothing new. I didn’t know that I loved him and I didn’t know why I couldn’t let him go, all I can remember is the utter sense of worthlessness. How idiotic I felt. There were signs. To be honest, he didn’t even conceal it that well. But I was 15 and I wanted to be optimistic and I wanted to have my rock ‘n’ roll romance. The worst part was that I was never angry, I was just let down. And from that moment I came to expect disappointment from people. In another hilarious twist of the universe, the same 17 year old boy became the love of my life for the next 3 years and gave me some of the most positively defining moments of my life.
The third moment that sticks out is the day I told my mum I wanted to run out on to the street and jump in front of a car and, stony faced, she told me to “Just do it, then.” That was the moment I realized that no one ever really knows how you feel. And no one ever really cares. The hopelessness persisted. And I would resent my mother for a very long time after that. I think deep down I still do. Long story short, that moment led to the hell of my teenage years living at my parents place and being kicked out of/leaving home.
I’m not writing this for sympathy or empathy or anything. I am writing this because my analytical nature has taught me that no matter how much we may or may not “understand” how one another feels, we are all fucked up for different reasons. It’s so easy to look at the person next to you and think “they have never had this and that happen to them, what would they know?” It’s so easy to find enemies in those who are defensive and hateful, because nobody can be bothered to find out “Why are they the way they are?” Maybe if you learned to listen a little more, you would find that we are all just treading through the same dark and treacherous forest, but everyone just has their own path. We live in a world where we are encouraged to talk about our problems, let them all out. And while I’m not encouraging people to oppress their angst, I am hoping that maybe people can balance out all that talking with a bit of listening. Open your eyes and ears to the beauty of pain, and not just your own. I hope you find it as refreshing and liberating as I do.