If you keep asking questions you’ll keep getting answers

My therapist always warns me about asking “why”. I remember the first time he did it and even back then I knew why asking why was a bad idea. Why questions tend to lead to more why questions and rarely result in helpful answers.  My therapist just wants me to be happy, to be content, and asking why is not the way to get there. I know that, but I still say…

So What!

I’m not seeking contentment. I”m not seeking happiness. I’m seeking the truth.  For that I would rather follow the advice of Miss Frizzle from the Magic School Bus. She says is fond of saying, “Take chances, make mistakes, get messy.” These are words to live by. Yes, there is wisdom to be found even in children’s programming and Magic School Bus is one of my favorites. I watched it all the time with my kids when they were young and I’ve recently started watching it again with a three year old friend of mine.

He’s really into the episode about the Haunted House so I’ve watched it probably half a dozen times. In this episode, Carlos is trying to build a musical instrument.  Try as he might, his instrument still sounds loopy. He doesn’t know what he did wrong. He doesn’t know what he is going to do to fix it. The only advice Miss Frizzly has is, “Well, if you keep asking questions, Carlos, you’ll keep getting answers.”

I’ve been asking myself a lot of questions lately and I have been getting a lot of answers although most of them have not been that helpful. My biggest questions are, “Why is my best friend not talking to me?” and “Why is my daughter not talking to me?” These are difficult questions to answer when the person with the answer isn’t talking to me. Logic would suggest that I just give it up, let it go, get on with my life… but I don’t. I just keep asking more questions.

Why can’t I move on?

Why do I care?

Why do I believe what I believe?

Why do I like what I like?

Why do I do what I do?

Why can’t I stop asking questions?

This is the behaviour of someone who is searching. This is the behaviour of someone who is missing something. But what am I missing? I have everything I need, in fact I have more than I need so why do I still feel this hole in my soul?

Well, I think that I have finally found the answer… and no, it is not helpful but it is the truth.

It’s an answer for which I have been searching nearly forty-seven years. It’s an answer which has been there the whole time but one which I have never allowed myself to look at.  It’s an answer I haven’t been able to look at until now. It’s an answer I have probably been training my entire life to receive. It’s an answer which could not be found by asking. There is no way to find this answer. It had to come to me which is strange because it is not something that is out there. It is something that is in me. It is something so basic to who I am. It is what burns at the core of my being. It is something so primal that there is no language to explain it. It is not an answer that I could find by thinking. It is something that I needed to feel.

You see, I was put up for adoption at birth. That not really a big deal. It’s certainly no great revelation. I grew up knowing that I was adopted. I understand a lot of the implications of being adopted. Adopted people tend to have more problems than the general population and the reasons for this are pretty straight forward. There are always those questions about where we come from. There is an understanding that someone who is considering putting a child up for adoption is likely to have a stressful pregnancy. We know that stress can affect fetal development. Open adoption has worked to remedy some of these issues but there is still something more going on. There is still something that we don’t want to look at. We are still told that adoption is a beautiful wonderful thing. It takes a child who needs a home and places that child in a home that needs someone to love.

What could be more beautiful than that?

We could stop asking questions right now and just go along our merry way and if you want to be happy, I highly recommend doing just that. Stop reading right here because you don’t want to know what I am about to tell you.

What really happens to a child when that child is put up for adoption?

This is not a question which can be answered through observation. The adoption process is very personal. The child has no memory of the birth. Well… at least no explicit memory. But I was there. I did go through this experience and recently I became able to remember. But it’s not your typical memory. There are no details, there are no pictures, there are no words. It’s more like a psychic connection. This memory has been sitting inside of me all along without me being able to understand it. Somehow, through the course of everything that I have been through I am now able to decode it. I am now able to give it words.

This is what happened to me. This is how my life began and this is why I have spent my entire life searching. I remember life before I was born. I remember being in utero. That womb was my entire universe. My mother was the be all and end all of everything. Upon my birth my universe disappeared. Everything I ever knew, everything that made any sense, was gone. You might say that this experience is not unique. Every child goes through this at the point of birth and I would not refute that. We have all been through this trauma and it’s probably the greatest trauma we will ever experience until we die.  It is probably a good thing that we don’t remember it.

But my trauma was different. The trauma of birth for an adopted child is different. I never got to be held by my universe. I never got to connect with my world. I never got to experience all that my time in utero was preparing me for. I was born to a foreign world, surrounded by aliens.

Anyway, now I understand it and that is pretty fucking cool. Now I know the trauma that I have experienced and I can begin to heal… if I want to. I’m not sure I do. I now understand that I have this huge gaping wound but you know what? It has served me pretty well. Sure, it makes me more sensitive to pain but so what? At least it’s real… and it’s mine.

—–

I was given something else to think about yesterday. It was suggested that I could get more of what I want and cause a lot less trouble if I just kept my mouth shut. That is really good advice. I’m actually pretty good at keeping my mouth shut I would rather not. I would rather just share everything that is on my mind. I guess that is where this blog comes from. Still, along with my insistence on asking questions, speaking my mind has probably caused ninety-nine percent of my problems. I’m pretty sure that my best friend would still be talking to me if I had learned when to keep my mouth shut. Also, I might have to quit drinking if I want to practice keeping my mouth shut. Those two things don’t seem to go together very well.

Advertisements

The truth hurts

“Some people see things that are and ask, Why? Some people dream of things that never were and ask, Why not? Some people have to go to work and don’t have time for all that.” – George Carlin

At my core I want nothing more than to be happy and for those around me to find happiness as well. So why do I ask “why” knowing that it is a sure fire way to destroy happiness? To have a job, to have work to do, to find purpose in one’s occupation is a far better path to happiness.

So why do I do what I do? The simple answer is because I can’t not do it. Perhaps it is a form of insanity. All I know is that I have an insatiable thirst for the truth. I am on a quest and I refuse to give up regardless of how difficult or painful it may be. This is my path and I have chosen to accept it.

What troubles me is why I am inflicting it on you. It doesn’t seem fair or kind.  People have asked if I think that I am driven to do this out of ego. I’m sure that there is some of that but I don’t think it’s the driving force. I don’t think this blog is terrible self aggrandizing. I haven’t put that much work into promoting myself or building readership. I’m really just giving what I have to give but am I kidding myself by thinking that this is somehow a gift? I like to look at everything as a gift but that is not a philosophy everybody subscribes to. It’s a philosophy that is pretty difficult for me at times.

Last nights post did not feel like much of a gift. It was actually quite painful. After writing it I felt broken and completely alone.  I never want to read it again and am feeling guilty for having subjected you to it. It was a devastating realization, the realization that my happiest days are over. They lasted two weeks and I’m grateful for that but that may be it.

Today I am done feeling sorry for myself. Today I am just thinking about you. Knowing how painful some of my posts are for me I can’t help but wonder if they are causing harm to others as well. Ideas are dangerous and I don’t want to be so callous about sharing mine. I’m not really. I have plenty of radical ideas that I haven’t dared share but some still slip out.

The temptation is to delete the whole blog but that doesn’t seem right. Legally it’s my blog and I can do whatever I want with it but since I have put it out there I don’t consider it mine alone. This is art and art is meant to be shared. These are shared words. Taking it down would not be an act of healing but an act of destruction.

So I’m going to keep writing because I can’t not write. I’m going to keep posting because I believe it is meant to be shared. If you keep reading, that’s on you. Just know that you may very well be reading the ramblings of a madman. If you take it seriously that’s not my fault.

“If you want to tell people the truth, make them laugh, otherwise they’ll kill you.” ― Oscar Wilde, The Nightingale and the Rose

I don’t want to save the planet, I’m sure it will be fine, I just want to make a better world

I laugh at myself. I should have known that I couldn’t condense my thoughts into a few small posts and accurately reflect my past week. Sometimes I wish that I was a comic and could put everything that I want to say in 14 words. Luckily there are some brilliant people like Joel Pett who can:

What-If-Its-A-Hoax

Not used by permission (sosueme)

For more on this subject check this out:

http://www.ted.com/talks/chris_bliss_comedy_is_translation.html

Mixed emotions

I’m still high on hippie love from Project Earth at Harmony Park. It was an incredible weekend. I worked hard and I played hard. I interacted will all sorts of amazing and beautiful people but what just blows my mind is how much I felt appreciated for just being me. I was asked to participate in this event. I was wanted. I just showed up and did what I do. I helped set up and tear down the Kiddie Village and I played some of my own songs on the Kiddie Village stage. It really wasn’t that much but I was made to feel like I had contributed something meaningful. I mean, people actually really liked my songs which still kind of freaks me out. Other than that I just dressed in my usual crazy clothes and pranced around enjoying the music and talking to random people at the festival.  This is just what I do but everywhere I went I was met with hugs and smiles. It’s empowering and makes you feel like you could change the world.

But then I returned home to message containing  this quote by Danielle Koepke:

“You don’t ever have to feel guilty about removing toxic people from your life. It doesn’t matter whether someone is a relative, romantic interest, employer, childhood friend or new acquaintance- You don’t have to make room for people who cause you pain or make you feel small. It’s one thing if a person owns up to their behaviour and makes an effort to change. But if a person disregards your feelings, ignores your boundaries, and “continues” to treat you in a harmful way, they have to go.”

I really like this quote; I even wrote her to let her know. I don’t like it so much when someone uses it to refer to me as a toxic person who has to go. That really hurts.

So today has been spent doing a lot of soul searching. How is it that all of these people who barely know me at all can show me so much love and then someone who knows me as well as anyone thinks that I’m toxic? Logic would suggest that I really am a toxic person. Logic would suggest that if I want people to like me I probably shouldn’t let them get to know me that well. Logic would suggest that writing this “tell all” blog is probably the worst idea in the world.

But logic does have it’s limitations. There is something deeper than logic and that is the truth. The truth is not always logical, nor is it always pleasant, desirable or even practical. My quest is for the truth, even when it is not pretty, even when it doesn’t benefit my self interest and without regard for whether it makes any fucking sense at all.

I actually don’t believe that there are toxic people. I believe that people can be in toxic relationships and that the relationship has to go but I don’t believe that people are inherently toxic or nontoxic. The truth is we all have toxic elements to us or elements that are toxic under certain conditions.

I really liked that part of Danielle’s quote where she talks about owning up to your behavior and making an effort to change. I think that this is an important component in any healthy relationship but you also need to personally believe in the change that you are making. It needs to be a change that makes you a better person, not just a person who is better able to live in a toxic relationship.

When I wrote Danielle I included these thoughts of my own:

If you don’t want to change, if you are comfortable with your behavior and are let go because of it – that’s okay too. You are being let go to go be yourself. Embrace your freedom!

I try to have the best relationship I can with every person in my life. I love everyone with all my heart but everyone is different so every relationship is different. It’s sad when it happens but some relationships are toxic and in those cases, the best relationship is no relationship at all.

 

Pull back the curtian

This writing shit is really hard, a hell of a lot harder than I thought it would be. So is maintaining a habit but I knew that would be a struggle, especially knowing how inconsistant my health is from day to day. I knew I might fail but I felt if I stuck with it, it would get easier.

Actually, it’s been a fucking roller-coaster and at the moment I’m at one at one of those low points. The first two weeks were pretty exciting but it didn’t take long for the newness to wear off. Then it just became tedious. I wanted to quit and chalk it up as another thing I couldn’t fit in my life. That was never really an option though. In fact failure was part of the plan; to push myself to the point where I wanted to quit and push through.

Unlike the physical challenges I create for myself, writing is easy. Coming up with things to write about is easy for me. The challange is reducing the thoughts in my head or the experiences I’ve had into coherent sentances that anyone whould care to read. The challange is keeping going when all I can think about is how much my writing sucks. It winds up taking a lot of time. I wind up taking a lot of breaks. I wind up drinking a lot of wine.

Then I write something that actually makes me proud. Maybe I can do this. Maybe purservierance does pay off. Maybe it does, but that’s not how it played out for me. Writing something that I felt good about only raised the bar and put more pressure on me. I’m stuggling even harder now.

Then I took two days off. I guess that was bound to happen. Structure is not my friend. My life is simply too inconsistant. When it works, I run with it. When it doesn’t, I accept it and keep hobbling along the best I can leaving my failures in the past. That is the only way I can hope to get to a place where life works again.

I’m probably the last person who should be publishing everything he writes. I’m probably the last person who should be publishing everything that goes on in his life or  every thought in his head. I’ll be the first to admit that I need an editor.

Believe me, I know this is a bad idea but that’s why I’m doing it. I know that for every good idea there are dozens if not thousands of bad ideas that came before it. We just rarely get to see all the failures that happen before one finds success. I want to pull back the curtian and expose the truth. The truth is, there is a long and winding road before you reach the Emerald City.

%d bloggers like this: