My Art, My Mind

30 04 2011

Here are a few more drawings I have from years gone by.  I have debated whether or not to share them but I decided it’s a good idea.

You can click the images for larger views.

This one I did while living in Seattle in the spring of 1992.  I was a young man and somewhat of a rebel.  I’m much smarter, or maybe just wiser these days.

...it's a lie

This one is exactly as titled.  After going through my teens and getting into my mid twenties I was forced to confront a huge inferiority complex and admit to myself that I was insecure and scared of the world.  I was an actor playing a role of confidence and seeking thrills to mask the fear, seeking chills to mask the pain.

...get yours today!

just fine, thanks!

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The Frayed Ends of Sanity

16 04 2011

This drawing has a lot of meaning to me.  I posted a photo of part of it in my previous bloggage after tweaking it in Photoshop a little bit for effect; but this is the original.  I love it for several reasons.  I drew this in the early winter of 1993 while working at a mental hospital.  Yup, I worked at the loony bin.  Makes sense if you think about it.  I call it The Frayed Ends of Sanity. And I was completely and totally 100% sober, no mind or mood altering substances partaken of during this time.

(drawn with ball point pen on typing paper)





The Godfathers of Guitar

18 02 2011

There’s a progression in music, much like the generations that pass as we raise our children, pass on our values and go forward into the world, having influence on so much.  We might feel insignificant while we are bogged down in the drudgery and seemingly mundane detail of every effort it takes to produce what it is we are striving for.

But it’s all worth it!  It pays off, maybe not in the peak of our lives as we would like, but if we persist, endure and do it right our lives and what we create become a crescendo that builds a foundation for those who come after us.  What we do is not lost on the demands of daily life as long as we keep our eyes on the distant goal.

Before I get too far off course, I’ll reel my thoughts back in and start talking about a man named Robert Johnson. Robert Johnson was born in 1911 and only lived to the age of twenty seven, but what he did for music is something that cannot be measured.

This brings me to another point of irony; the great music artists who made a huge splash and shook up the status quo of music in their day, dying at the age of twenty seven.  Robert Johnson, Jim Morrison, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Kurt Cobain.  There I go again getting ahead of myself.  It’s all in my head, but I need to lay it out in some order for it to make any sense.

Everyone has heard the story of the guy who sold his soul at the crossroads for talent, fame and glory.  Charlie Daniels brought it to us and told the story well in his classic song, The Devil Went Down To Georgia.  Did you ever wonder where the story of Johnny and the Devil came from?  It wasn’t Johnny and it wasn’t a fiddle.  It was Robert Johnson with a guitar.

Robert Johnson was a good blues guitar player but he wanted more, he wanted to be the best.  He studied with one of the greats of the time, Son House and used to try to emulate his idol but was unable to play as well.  When Johnson was nineteen he disappeared from Robinsonville, Mississippi for several months and when he came back he had a new guitar technique that nobody had ever played before.

This is where the story gets told, that Robert Johnson, for his passion of wanting to play the guitar so well, took his guitar to a crossroad near the Dockery Plantation at midnight where a large black man appeared to him.  The man took the guitar from Johnson, tuned it, played a couple of songs, and gave the guitar back to him along with total mastery of the instrument.  He was given the gift he sought but in return for this gift Johnson exchanged his soul.

This story makes for great PR but there’s another story that is probably what really happened.  Another player of the time named Ike Zinnerman spent a lot of time with Robert Johnson playing in the local cemetery at midnight, reportedly because it was quiet and nobody was around to disturb them.  This is where Johnson honed his mastery of the instrument, and the cemetery isn’t a bad place to come up with a story about selling one’s soul to the devil in exchange for fame and glory.

With the fame and glory came a tragic end.  Robert Johnson had been playing a certain gig for a few weeks and was flirting with the juke joint owner’s wife.  The man offered Johnson an open bottle of whiskey (he had previously been warned to never accept an open bottle but replied to the man who told him that to never knock a bottle from his hand) and he drank from it.  Reports tell us that the bottle was laced with strychnine and over the next few days Robert Johnson fell ill and eventually died.

Robert Johnson did leave us with an incredible catalog of recorded music that artists of the future would learn from and grow with to produce greater and more influential musical creation for us to partake of.  One in particular, and the one who most all musicians would agree is the standard for rock and roll and blues guitar is James Marshall Hendrix aka Jimi Hendrix.

Jimi Hendrix was born Johnny Allen Hendrix, November 27, 1942.  When Jimi’s dad came back from Europe after World War II he changed Jimi’s name to James Marshall, after his late brother, Leon Marshall.  I’m not sure where the James came from but I like it because we get Jimi spelled in that unique way.  Maybe it was just time to break from the chaos of the past and make things new.  Jimi always had a bright outlook on things and I think Al, his dad, was instrumental in teaching him correct principles.

On a side note, I had the honor of shaking hands with Al Hendrix in the fall of 1991 at a club in Seattle called the Rockandy.  It was a type of gig the Seattle bands put together to follow a theme of the godfathers of rock and roll and this night was Jimi Hendrix theme night.  Twelve Seattle bands came together to perform two Hendrix tunes of their choice and of their interpretation.  No, we didn’t have Nirvana or Soundgarden or Alice in Chains or Screaming Trees or Pearl Jam or Mudhoney or any of the huge list of big-shot Seattle bands you might wish were a part of this story; yeah, and I wish too!  How would that have been?  To meet Al Hendrix and watch Soundgarden knock out a couple Jimi covers for a six dollar entry?  But it wasn’t to be. Although we did get a dramatic performance from a band called The Sky Cries Mary, an obvious reference to Jimi’s song The Wind Cries Mary.  The Sky Cries Mary had some accolades and even made an appearance on the David Letterman show, but for some reason they didn’t receive the strong and wide spread recognition a lot of the projects coming out of Seattle did, which is a cryin’ shame because to be honest their expression through music was far more complex and layered than most everything else, especially at that time. They were never part of the ‘grunge’ scene, nor do I think they ever had any desire to be. They stood head and shoulders apart from the rest of the dank and dirty rock and roll genre that swept through Seattle at that time..

 
I sat with Roderick Romero, a member of The Sky Cries Mary, that night and we talked of musical expression, the layering of sound and the experiences obtained through the use of mind expanding particles introduced to the creative process. It is a conversation that has stayed with me through my life and throughout my creative endeavors. It was a great night, and I am grateful to have had that moment with him; he is an inspired and remarkable artistic visionary.

And there I go again, getting off track.  When it comes to music and the things I’ve seen, I can talk for hours and find myself down the goofiest tangents.

Jimi’s mom died when he was nine, from complications due to her alcohol abuse, and he moved up to Vancouver, BC for a while.  This is where he acquired his first acoustic guitar, from a pawn shop for five dollars.  His dad got it for him because Jimi had been air guitaring on an old broom stick and playing a broken ukulele his dad found while cleaning the garage.

Eventually Al rounded up enough dough to get Jimi his first electric guitar.  In 1958 he got a white Supro Ozark 1560 S, single pickup from Myer’s Music in Seattle, Washington.  He didn’t have an amplifier but Jimi did what he could with what he had and that’s why Jimi Hendrix is the legend he is today; because he felt it and what he felt, he was able to let out his arms and through his fingers, through his guitars and into our ears for the expansion of minds around the musical world.

Jimi took what the godfathers before him did, like Robert Johnson, Son House and Ike Zinnerman and added a new flavor to the mix.  It’s an evolution, and as society in Jimi’s day evolved in technology and industry, so did music in intellectuality.  Thank God Jimi Hendrix was there with his electric guitar to express this new knowledge given us from The Field in the form of music as the floodgates opened and the new energy rolled forward.  The minds who were paying attention and who would not immediately dismiss this new horizon as rebellion and sedition from normalcy opened to the influence of this musical microcosm that had previously existed only in science fiction and in the fantasies of artists.

He had the audacity to play The Star Spangled Banner at Woodstock, and regardless of what most white collar conservatives, flashing down the street, pointing their plastic fingers at Jimi believe, he did it as a tribute to this great nation, not as a desecration of something sacred as our national anthem.  Just because the squares of the day didn’t get it doesn’t mean his art form was nothing short of God’s grace shedding brilliant talent down on a generation of artists to shake up the status quo.  That’s not to say his lifestyle was anything to emulate; maybe something to be learned from, but the authorities of the day tried to dismiss what he was doing as a mockery when it was merely a new form of expression.  And to dismiss the art because of the artist is a shame.  If we were to do that then we might just as well throw out Mozart, Hemmingway and Van Gogh.

Jimi did live fast and died hard.  On September 18, 1970 at the age of twenty seven, Jimi Hendrix died.  It was that night that he had attended a party in London and was picked up by his then girlfriend, Monika Dannemann and driven to her place at the Samarkand Hotel at Notting Hill.  It was no secret that Jimi had an affection for amphetamines and this night he downed nine Vesperax, a German brand sleeping pill whose dosage was one half of a pill.  A few hours after midnight Jimi began to vomit from the overdose but was unconscious from the high dosage and asphyxiated on the red wine that was in his stomach.  Eeeew!

That’s a tragic end to a lifestyle lived.  God bless Jimi Hendrix and may he be forgiven for any trespasses upon the Natural Law.  He was a man of vision and an artist that many followed after.

And after Jimi came many, and there were other masters who deserve mention as Jimi’s peers.  Eric Clapton, Carlos Santana, George Harrison, Jimmy Page and in the years beyond the great sixties and early seventies we had mega freaks like Eddie Van Halen, Randy Rhodes, the Schenker brothers and Stevie Ray Vaughan and even some disgustingly, technically perfect, so perfect it’s not even enjoyable listening, like Joe Satriani and Steve Vai.  But then, thank the heavens; we were blessed in the late eighties with a new son of pure guitar art form who played only because it’s the only thing he could do.  Not for the glory, not for the fame, not for the money; he played from the heart and he gave it everything.

On June 25, 1988 Hillel Slovak, guitarist for the Red Hot Chili Peppers succumbed to the horrors of heroin addiction and left a gaping hole in the world of music.  One of their fans, John Anthony Frusciante had been playing guitar since age nine when he became infatuated with The Germs and learned to play along with their record, GI.  Shortly after that, one of his instructors turned him on to the Red Hot Chili Peppers and John proceeded to emulate Hillel Slovak’s guitar style.  John went on to master the blues scales at then discovered Frank Zappa.  At the age of sixteen, with the permission of his parents, he dropped out of high school after taking a proficiency test and enrolled at the Guitar Institute of Technology.  At one point Frusciante was set on trying out for Frank Zappa’s band but heard that Frank wasn’t too keen on chemical refreshment so John decided, as he knew he was going to indulge in the hedonism of rock stardom, not to even give it a shot.

Frusciante had become friends of the Chili Peppers as their shows were more intimate in the early days when the fans would go gangbusters slam dancing (before it was called moshing) and rarely experience the show visually.  There was a band in LA at the time called Thelonious Monster who was auditioning guitar players.  Anthony Keidis was friends with Bob Forrester of Thelonious Monster and arranged an audition for John.  After seeing the audition, Anthony offered Frusciante a position in the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

John Frusciante was eighteen years old and they called him Greenie.  He fell in quick with the band and followed in Hillel’s footsteps without missing a beat.  It was almost as though he had channeled Hillel’s spirit he played the Chili Peppers’ material so well.  As Slovak was greatly influenced by Jimi Hendrix, so was John Frusciante, and like Hillel, John approached the guitar from a minimalist angle, which likely came from his punk and new wave roots.  And I say God bless you John for not being another over playing virtuoso and laying it down cleanly and simply and beautifully as you have for the years.

The music that John has created with The Red Hot Chili Peppers has given me insight into things that I knew were going on within my own life, but I was unable to touch upon them in any coherent manner.  But when I listened to Californication in February of 2000 while driving from Vancouver, Washington to Salt Lake City to look for a new career, and move my family back home as the wife requested, I heard Anthony telling me about parallel universes and that was something of a catalyst to my thinking toward my belief that this band has in fact, paralleled my entire life with their songs, the stories they tell within the songs and all the drama and in fighting, with Dave Navarro coming into the band during that time I was adopting my two daughters, Tayslie and Ali and I did  not treat them right.  I didn’t have the tools or the skills to be a tender and nurturing parent.  But as time has passed I have grown in knowledge and wisdom and I pray that those beautiful young women forgive me some day of the faults of a young man who was trying his best to do what he was told by those around him and echoing the environment in which he was raised.

And here we are today, loving Stadium Arcadium, again following the patterns of my life.  Every song on that recording speaks profoundly to me at some level of my life at the time it was recorded, from my relationships with younger women and She’s Only 18 (and it actually tells the story of my relationships with Jayne Pederson exactly as it happened, and with another girl named Raquel; it just blows me away how precise the words are to us) to Warlocks when I spent my time in Portland with the hedge witch, Tami to the soul touching song Hey, the last track on the first disc, Mars of the Stadium Arcadium masterpiece; that song, Hey tells the story of the communication between me and my ex wife to the T.  And the song, Charlie is totally Marlene, my angel and my healer. And not to mention their unreleased b-sides recordings that speak directly to me with profound exactness every time I stumble upon them.

I could go on and write volumes.  This means nothing to many and it’s just silliness to some, but for me it’s profound and this is my life.  All things happen for a reason.  There is no such thing as coincidence.  All things have purpose, if you have faith enough to believe on things greater than yourself.

So, from Robert Johnson to Jimi Hendrix and on down through the cacophony of glammed up rock star virtuoso guitar players we are blessed with the tenderness of John Frusciante who expresses the truth right through his instrument and into my ears to resonate with me and validate my existence.

I love you John.  Thank you for everything you’ve been through, everything you’ve given us and everything that is to come.  John Frusciante is a master beyond recognition.





You coulda fooled me!

31 01 2011

I need to preface this post by saying I don’t 100% agree with the sentiment expressed within.  I do, however like the way I expressed it and think there’s some food for thought here.  It’s easy to be hyper-sensitive at times and perceive things that are not actually taking place.

********

“He who takes offense when no offense is intended is a fool, and he who takes offense when offense is intended is a greater fool.”
— Brigham Young

Tonight I went to a dance.  It was weird, but I was there.  It was a dance in downtown SLC at a Masonic lodge put on by some people who throw parties and dances for single people over the age of thirty five.  So I went with a friend for something to do, to hang out, dance a little, mingle, munch on some snacks, say hi to some friends and call it a night.

It was good for the most part, but I do have one big complaint.  And I hate to complain.  I used to like to complain a lot.  I used to have a good old time blogging and criticizing people, complaining about all sorts of crazy and unimportant things I found irritating in my life.  That was back when I was basically miserable inside; happy on the outside but tormented on the inside.  Now I’m what you see is what you get.

So I wandered down to the area where all the people I know are dancing and they’re laughing, having a good time and dancing.  Now, the deal here is that all the guys want the women to like them and they’re all trying to impress all the women.  And all the women want to look good enough to be accepted by the other women and to be liked by all the guys.  So there’s this dynamic going on of human mating rituals, showing off, trying to impress each other and all sorts of one-upsmanship and I’m just there to hang out.  I could give two shits about impressing anyone or making a love connection.

what's your perspective?These are people I know, I’ve associated with in the past; not people I’d put on my Christmas list or to whose funerals I would be invited, but they are people I’ve shared the social spotlight with and we have common friends.  When I go to these dances I don’t get all excited and immediately run out on the dance floor and start cutting a groove to China.  I like to stand back for a while, watch everyone, see who is around, watch what’s happening, have some snacks, meet a person or two and then maybe dance a little bit.  I think because I approach it this way that some people think I’m being a snob or anti-social.  It’s not that at all; I just like to soak things in.  I’m different from most people and I don’t feel like I have to jump into the fray to avoid missing some critical moment in social evolution.  OK, that was a snobbish comment; maybe I should take it back.  It doesn’t apply to everyone but I know it applies to some.

When I finally got down to the group I started dancing with my friend and I said hello to a few of the people there from across the room; talked to one or two of them a little bit.  There were some casual hellos given with a little courteous wave of the hand but it was mostly insincere, formal gesturing.

When the whole shebang was through the house lights came up and all the glad handing and hugging commenced and people started saying their goodbyes.  This is where it was really apparent that I was not part of the pack.  Eye contact was avoided with me by people I’ve had lengthy intimate conversations with in the past and except for a few of them who are genuinely cool people, nobody had any time or interest in my being there.  I only bring this up because I know why it happened like this.  It’s because of my past; because I spent some time in jail and that I have a reputation for associating with more rough-around-the-edges sorts of crowds.  In short, it’s a result of the choices I’ve made in the past.

Now, it does bother me on some level but I really want to say it doesn’t bother me at all, and tomorrow it isn’t going to bother me one bit and I’m going to feel like I shouldn’t have made this blog post at all; but like I said in the preface, I think there’s some food for thought in here.

Truly, it doesn’t really bother me other than just on the surface.  I mean I could take them or leave them, except that they’re my brothers and sisters and I do care for them and love them, but they’re just people, regular people who have regular lives.  They come and go; they’re not a critical part of my life.

But this sort of thing has never happened to me before although I have witnessed it happening to others in this very same circle.  I have seen people come and go from this social circle because they become offended and feel ostracized by the indifference of others.

I like to talk to people.  I like to say hello to strangers and make conversation with people I don’t know.  I like to make someone I don’t know laugh and try to make an impression on them to help them feel like there’s somebody out there who found them interesting enough to give their attention to.  That’s what uplifting our brothers and sisters is about.  And it’s not about doing it just to get it done, it’s about being sincerely interested in another person.

This sort of snubbing I see going on with people of this age only happens in Utah and in the LDS social circles.  It’s sad but true.  I certainly hate to be critical of my people; and they are my people because of my ancestry, my culture and the group I primarily identify myself with.

The core of our religious beliefs is Jesus Christ and love, compassion and service.  The purpose of our very lives is to help up build the kingdom of God on the earth and welcome all of our brothers and sisters into the fold; especially those who have been lost and wandering; not to shun them because they have habits or tendencies toward things that go against the teachings of our gospel.  Because to be completely honest, all of us are guilty of that very thing.  If that were not true none of us would need repentance.  It’s just that many people have bad habits that are easy to hide, that don’t outwardly offend others or make others out-rightly uncomfortable.

don't do it!Say there’s one guy who shows up reeking of cigarette smoke, wearing a Headbanger’s Ball t-shirt and another guy shows up who has just spent the past three hours watching hard-core pornography in the privacy of his own home.  How easy is it to pass judgment in a case like that?  The outward appearance is important, but the truth is more important.

Sometimes I wonder if the feeling is that if they associate with me they will somehow be categorized by their peers as being sympathetic to whatever behavior or experience in my past opposes their values.  I have a checkered past and it surely rubs some people the wrong way.  And there are others who look right past it and know me as the person I am; not for the light that shines on me but for the light that shines from me.

Often times, people close themselves off and huddle together in their social groups like Jr. High School kids.  I know they don’t do this on purpose and I know they have bigger hearts than I’m making it sound like, but their actions certainly mean something.  I know they do good things and give service, are good parents, good friends and good, honest citizens.  I tried to socialize with them, I tried to be a part of the crowd, tried to be friendly, tried to open up but there’s something going on, something about me that threatens or otherwise makes them feel uneasy.

Somebody is going to read this blog post and word is going to spread and then they’ll know how I feel, then they will feel justified in ignoring me because they can point to the attitude expressed in this blog post and say it’s because of my own behavior I feel this way.  But I didn’t feel this way until tonight.

Look up!So I got this off my chest, it’s just a rant and it’s probably an overblown misunderstanding but the essence of what I’m saying is surely going to resonate with some people who understand exactly where I’m coming from.  Then there will be the defensive group who won’t have a clue what I’m talking about and think I’m just being a jerk.  Then there might be a couple who are exceptions, who were actually very cool to me and who don’t belong as part of this rant, but who mistakenly think I still mean them too.

You can’t make everyone happy all of the time.  There’s no use in trying, so I just tell the truth, call it like I see it, speak my mind, say what I’m feeling and let the cards fall where they may.  This makes some people uncomfortable but I live life with a clean conscious knowing that I’m honest and truthful.  People don’t have to guess what I’m thinking or wonder how I feel.  Despite all of this ranting, I have nothing against any of these good people and I admire all of them in many different ways.

It’s just unfortunate that some of them feel uncomfortable.  Is it my fault or is it their problem? I don’t know.  I don’t think it really matters anyway.  I think what matters is that the future holds good things and that everything is going to be just fine and that I have no reason to bitch about anything.





That old familiar unknown demon

21 12 2010

Keep in mind as you read this that I wrote it at the lowest of lows in my life, but it was honest at the time I wrote it.  Life is not this gloomy for me, but there is much truth to how I express myself in this post.

I have spent the better part of my life succeeding at mediocrity. There have been times when I have been a part of something great but never anything I’ve done on my own. I’m not sure why that is. I see other people going for their dreams and making things work, I’m missing something, that’s for sure.

I’m one of the most self-sabotaging people to have ever walked the face of this earth. I have great ideas, wonderful plans, a great big giant heart full of love, and I just wind up pulling the trigger while I’m staring down the barrel of the gun. I have some sort of character flaw, a defect, a loose screw or something wrong somewhere inside me because I am so prone to order turning to chaos around me. It’s like I attract it. Wherever I go, it’s like a bomb gets dropped and I’m standing there waving to everyone, wondering why they’re pissed off that a bomb just exploded, disrupting their otherwise orderly lives.

Therapy! That’s what I need, I need some professional mind bender to sit and listen to me carry on and on about all the things that plague me about my life. I’m not sure what that will do but I certainly could use an objective ear to lay out everything that’s on my mind, it’s swirling around in my head like a storm with waves crashing down on my thoughts and sinking my ability to progress.

Words used to flow from my mind clearly and smoothly like a river running down a mountain canyon, but now I feel like I can hardly put two thoughts together before I forget where I’m going and get stuck. All I can do is keep moving forward one step at a time, even if it’s just literally walking one step at a time. Something has got to give some time. The people in my life have an impossible time understanding what makes me tick or what motivates me, they’re at their wit’s end with me and don’t have the energy to even invite me into their lives anymore. I’m sure they miss the old me, and so do I.

The downward spiral all started when my marriage fell apart. I really haven’t been able to put myself back together since that happened. I surely could have done things differently, but I took the path of least resistance because I am someone who tries to stay away from conflict. That might sound very contrary to some who have lived with me in the past because I used to be very confrontational at times, but that’s another part of my mental disorder. I like to keep things peaceful, but I would point out everything that I felt was out of order around me. I don’t do that any more, I used to be that way. Maybe that’s why I feel like I’m so lost is because I have let go of the control I used to require to keep myself feeling right about life.

Being so controlling is tiresome work, and it hurts the ones you love. I learned the hard way to let things be as they are. I’m learning still every day and I’m full of flaws but the one thing that plagued me, that just ate me up inside at those times of quiet when it was just me and my thoughts, was my quick temper, my quick reaction, the intimidating sound of my voice that I would use to keep the kids in check, I’m so embarrassed and ashamed of ever being that person.

I learned that in my home growing up, but I knew better. For some reason I carried it on right into my marriage. It is the very reason I screwed up so many relationships and why I was single until I was close to 30 years old. Then my poor wife had all of my pent up frustration and anger to deal with, and I laid it right on her. Everything she did that I thought was odd or quirky or weird I pointed out. And she wasn’t just some regular woman either. She had come from a big family with an abusive father and a passive mother in a relatively small town where everyone put on the facade of perfection and kept the troubles bubbling just below the surface so she had one mode in public, then at home it was fear and intimidation and sneaking around, keeping secrets so you didn’t get yelled at or made the target.

Then once we got married that’s exactly how I made her feel all over again. I didn’t know I was doing it, she didn’t know I was going to do it, I didn’t know what I was doing, I was just going through life trying to be a husband and a father to two young girls, earn a living and I just went from day to day trying to survive. I had better times but for the most part my frustration was always boiling over in some way or another. My wife and the two girls basically feared me because they never knew when I was going to be angry. If I could have just been patient and been nice, things would have been fine. That’s all, just patient, allowing things to take place as they do, think through before reacting, being kind, the things I’ve learned the hard way since the divorce. Now I can’t go back and apply them because I’ve fallen so far backwards into whatever my life has become that I’m stuck here floundering and wondering if this is punishment or just opposition to something I’m supposed to learn from.

It’s easy to say I’m confused, I’ve always been confused about things. I’ve always had conflicting thought patterns running through my head, always, all my life. When I talk about how things were in my childhood my parents cringe and they don’t react well to me expressing the unpleasant memories I hold inside me. I want them to be happy with me but the truth is that they really just want me not to be any trouble. They don’t really feel a sense of pride in anything I do or who I am, they just want me not to be a screw up. That’s the funny thing, being told all my life I’m so full of potential and talent and being treated like everything I’m doing is wrong. It gives a person a huge inferiority complex and that is what I deal with every day.

I have a real problem with my self worth, self esteem. I know I have a bunch of talents but there are people out there who can do things better than me, so why am I even necessary? That’s the sort of twisted thought process that goes on in my head. When I want something I can make it happen, but when it comes to fitting in, that’s not something I’ve ever done very well. I don’t fit in, I stand out. And that’s something I don’t understand. I try to blend, but I stand out, I always have.

So here I sit at age 45 feeling like a child, full of guilt and second guessing everything I have ever done, wallowing in the failures that I have endured throughout my life, but still wanting something better. Why do people think I have anything to offer, why do people think I have something great or anything of any significance? I guess I’ve just run myself down, maybe this is what they call a nervous breakdown. The truth is that there is this nucleus burning hot at the core of my soul that is made of the pure essence of loss. Maybe I’m just weak, maybe I don’t have the backbone to survive what life throws my way, but I just can not get past the divorce.

It’s not losing my wife that has me feeling so sad, it’s the failure of the family that kills me. The one thing that is central to this life, most important above anything else, I wanted to be a protector and provider for my family and when it fell apart I didn’t know how to go on, I didn’t know how to play my role anymore. I didn’t have a purpose anymore. The single man that I once was had evolved and could not go back, but when I did I didn’t know how to do it, and I did what I remembered doing at the age I was when I was single before. And I made the same choices, as if I were in my twenties again. I just can’t get over the fact that I’m not living under the same roof with my children. Sure, I could have made time, made the sacrifices and done the regular split-family thing and taken them when it was my time, back and forth, and I did that for years but it just was not the same. The poor children had a broken family, a broken home, it wasn’t fair to them to have to live this way, I just felt it was so wrong deep to my core, it’s so wrong and just does not sit well with me.

I think that is my main problem, I just feel like my family is so screwed up and I’m responsible for it but it’s out of my control and I have let it get out of control and because I let it go it crushed my heart and all I could do to survive day to day was to numb the pain with medicine.

People have a broken bone, they get medication to ease the pain. It’s obvious, it’s right there in front of them, you can see it in an x-ray. I suppose I could just go through life with the pain bothering me every day, gnawing at me and distracting me, but I was so overwhelmed by it that I had to do something to ease the pain. People don’t understand, it’s not something that can be measured, it’s not something that can be found in an MRI, or x-ray, but it’s as real as a tooth ache or torn ligament. But because I have this handsome appearance and I have a physically strong body and I can be charming and intelligent when I have to, people have expectations for me, and I have set expectations of myself. But on the inside I’m broken, twisted and hurting, confusion is my middle name and I feel like maybe I should be put in an institution for a mental reboot. The people in my life have no idea how to help me, nor do I have any idea how they could help me because I don’t know what I need. I do know what I want but my life is in such disarray that going for the things I want just seem to be out of focus, obscured by clouds.

I kept it together for years as a corporate IT slave, well I say slave but the truth is that I am very grateful for the years I had working and earning that money to support my family. But they let me go because my life is too complicated for me to fit in the way I need to to make the corporate ship sail on calm seas. My life became completely out of control and everyone around me could see it happening. Of course I tried hard to keep it together, to make it seem like I was just going through a mid-life crisis, excusing my immature behavior or indulgence with younger women by joking and saying I was following in my father’s footsteps as he had divorced my mother and married a woman my age.

I want to be left alone to do as I please, sure that’s every man’s dream. But at the same time I want the approval and admiration of those I admire and love. I want to do something to make the world a better place. I don’t want to be noticed for doing it, but I want to give the world something great, that’s what’s boiling inside of me and has been since I was a kid. I guess sifting through all this confusion, writing all of this has brought me back to the place I once found myself a couple of months ago, where I am free to do as I please, to create my world and make things happen as I desire them.

I need to change some things, but those things that need to change are things I’m not sure of. That’s why I need the therapy. So I’m going to keep on writing, blogging, maybe I’ll write a book, I need to do something productive with my life if I can’t keep it together enough to hold down a job until my head gets fixed








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