Sunday, September 27, 2009

of inner bag ladies and screwy humanity

lessons are learned when we hit our metaphorical heads against the obvious, which hitherto has been invisible to us.

I'm learning lots of lessons in this microcosm of time called a "Weekend".

Lessons about the art of practising loneliness without letting the human will rise up to scream that "It's not my fault!".

What one feels is always, at the human core, one's "fault". Not a fault that is bad mind you - just a thing we own; a conscious muddle of reactive and proactive, miniscule decisions based in part on our history and in part on our natural inclinations in the processing of thought. The mush of messages we interpret through the miasma of feelings decipher for us what these feelings might mean - though we often get it wrong.

Emotions are neither good nor bad. Emotions just are. They're the responsive tendency of our nature to life within and without. Much of what we emote we choose, even if we're unaware at the time of our actual decision. Much of what we emote is based in part on our sense of ourselves; the way we view ourselves in relationship to others.

Many human beings have a strong sense of unworthiness or fear of that. I do believe that many of us - myself most of all - are incapable of seeing ourselves exactly as we are in perfect balance to the world and other people around us. I for instance, teeter and totter between the attitudes of exclusive "Above-ness" over others and mortified "Below-ness" under others. My moral compass has thus far been mostly, skewed to the latter and I am apt to measure myself, relative to others as below them, albeit not to be humble but rather out of some vain hope they will elevate me over them in gratitude for my humility. Screwy humanity indeed!

Loneliness is one of those emotions we like to ignore for as long as possible. I have recognised its crumpled hang-dog face this weekend and have been a bit shocked at how unkempt and ragged my self esteem has become. I've done this - no one else. I've fought valiantly for a long time to be super independent and so on but now the shuffling feet of my inner bag-lady - so alone and crazed with lack of social engagement must be made over.

What I've yet to work out is just how to do that without frightening the poor thing completely into total isolation from the world.

More lessons to come I guess. The "how-to-overcome-loneliness" journey begins.

Thursday, September 24, 2009


It's been a strange thing not writing in this place of late.

The heart is definitely willing but the will has been left high and dry through the use - and misuse - of a multitude of other distractions. Right now, my life consists of the treadmill of work, family life and Second Life and little else.

But anyway... I have plenty...plenty...of people telling me that I need to "get out there" and "meet new people" but quite honestly, I just can't be bothered you know! I'm in recluse mode this year and quite frankly, I think that's perfectly fine. At least for now! I'm having fun being on my own actually, and not being beholden to anyone. Well, more or less, as I do miss the "man-I-can-cuddle" thing if I was really being honest about this. Still, I'm not sure what I genuinely want out of life yet. I'm still figuring it all out. I do know I am way too shy to even think about going out and meeting real life men in real life situations and places.

Solitude is apparently only good in small doses and if one takes on board all that stuff about no man (or woman) being an island etc. then solitude is something that most people expect a person to give up eventually. Some people are naturally more inclined towards solitude than others and I may well be one of these types. I'm not sure how long this extended bout of solitude - and real life isolation outside of work hours - will continue, but I suppose it will be for as long as it is necessary for me to make the internal shifts I probably need to make in order to desire a different kind of life. Who knows?

I will admit, that mine is a bizarre kind of solitude though. I am not given to solitude in isolation! *smirk* (gotta love that little conundrum of a sentence *wink*). I may well be 'alone' on weekends despite kids and cats, preferring to be relatively undisturbed by other flesh and blood personages; but my social calendar is full to brimming with personalities all vying for my personal attention with stories to tell and banter to ply and flirty fun to be had

Oh yes! I am very much partial to long distance relationships where the full bottle of human behaviours is nicely chilled in a bucket of virtual fantasy. Second Life is like a zoo where I can observe the social proclivities of my own species from a slightly detached perspective. I learn so much in there about people! It's a cornucopia of chemistry through, mostly, written language and its fascinating to engage with and indulge in.

My imagination can fill in the gaps in between words with an entire picture of the person I am talking to through the screen. I actually "see" the metaphysical "shape" of a person through a miry world of story pictures, created from the syntax and rhythms of their speech in text.

Whether this image is truth is barely relevant because it is most probable that I will never meet their real life self. Often, in my experience, the magical quality of mystery which surrounds a person, never met, but known intimately in an online context, is severely mitigated once the real life, in person, meet up has passed. Sadly, this seems to often mean almost zero re-connection when back online in the virtual world. It surprises me how the intensity of online intimacy changes into mere aquaintance territory after real life meetings. There is a sort of kinship yes, but it's definitely less intensive than before a real life meeting. I've never really figured out why that is but I suspect its something to do with disappointment. This is natural of course, given our tendency to imagine finer and more lovely pieces fitting into the mysterious jigsaw of a person's physical self than is warranted. Rare is the human that under imagines things!

The interesting thing is that I believe I am perfectly myself in Second Life. Even though in there, I am not fat, I do not have wrinkles, zits or tuck-shop-lady-arms, I am quintessentially the woman that I am in every day life! My persona is fully intact except that I can express vanity in much more attractive ways :) I do not have to wonder where my blind left eye is actually looking and I do not have to worry about body odor, smelly socks, gas or garlic breath! In Second Life, my avatar is my beautiful, shiny self that can instantly engage in conversational banter with strangers without all that nervous, jittery angst. I can be witty and confident, playful and intelligent in there.

I soooo don't feel like that out here! And, barely anyone in real life knows that I am these things anyway, because I rarely feel its possible to display these aspects of myself due to real life social conventions which constrain and restrain my quirky esprit. Besides, I speak better through the written word than I do in my voice so that makes it even harder to be what I want to be out here anyway!

I am also exceedingly scared to have to "perform" like a seal for prospective new friends and lovers in real life. There is too much at stake, from how I dress, to how much weight I've gained (or lost), to an almost limitless capacity for gaucheness and a paucity of actual practical intelligence on my part! I'm a ditz and a goldfish (as in 3 second memory) and so implausibly skittish around men it's a wonder I ever got married!

It's a freakishly more difficult concept to get my head around in being told to "put myself out there" in the real world to meet people, than explaining to my sceptical work colleagues how to shop for hair and feet in Second Life, I can tell you!

Meeting real life people requires from me an emotional investment in courage I'm not yet willing to explore. The process feels unnatural and contrived for me right now. I'm more inclined to feel comfortably at ease talking to men - and women - from the United States, the Ukraine, Greece, France, Holland, New Zealand, W. Australia or India in Second Life and for now, that's where I am... and shall be, happily ensconced in my solitude :)

For now Second Life and Solitude are my hand-in-glove partners in emotional healing. I have not abandoned real life - I just want to escape its vicissitudes for a little while. When the time is right I shall most likely change spots yet again, and do something completely different. It's what I do!