~ kusala
[ ku-sa-la: Pali term meaning wholesome, skillful, good, meritorious. ]
[ Action characterized by this quality (kusala-kamma) is bound to result (eventually) in happiness and a favorable outcome. ]


2005-10-31 - 4:06 p.m.

Decline, Part II (you really think itís only Part II?)

[N.B.: originally written Thursday, October 13, 2005]

Thereís no way for this to sound anything but overdramatic, but there it is: Iíve pretty much completely ruined my life. I suppose one might say that Things can only get better now, but Iím not sure that will be true, in the long run. Iím afraid of the Long Run, and maybe thatís been the major problem all along.

Had coffee with Cody this evening, which is probably the first time Iíve seen him in about three years. I remember last meeting up with him for dinner at the Paradise Cafť, and my best guess would place that at three years ago. Weíve kept up pleasantries through occasional emails, usually related to our birthdays and Christmas/New Yearís, but the bulletins have been by no means extensive. Enough to keep the most basic tabs on one another, verify that weíre each still alive, and so forth.

I donít want to completely lose touch with him, but if tonight is any indication, Iím not sure I can bear the idea of having him in my life at all either. I didnít reveal anything particularly personal during this eveningís chat, but all Iím left feeling at the end of it is pitiful. That is, cognisant of how pitiful a figure I am, or have become over the years. It truly has been nothing but a steady decline on a variety of fronts; and those ďfrontsĒ are essentially all encompassing.

How do I start? How could I tell him whatís happened since ďthingsĒ ended between us in August 2000? How do I make sense in my own mind of all thatís happened since August 2000? How do I account for any of it? How do I feel anything but pitiful in the face of it? Itís not just self-pity, either; itís the way I know I must appear to Others. Even taking into account my usual self-consciousness, how can I appear anything but sad and ridiculous?: A Shame.

Part of me feels [I fear, but donít quite want to say part of me knows] that I wonít ever have that kind of intimacy again with another human being. That is what hurts so much. Confronting what I threw away for whatever idiotic, self-hating, and selfish reasons I may have had at the time.

Was I stumbling in the Dark any more than others? Does it matter [what others are/were doing? once again I want to find some reason to compare], when the fact remains plain that I was truly stumbling. In a terrible way.

I hate this life that I have created. In some sense, it feels that I havenít really ďcreatedĒ it, because that implies some kind of determined action, and it would be an exaggeration to imply that I have ever truly acted determinedly. Still, in the end, whether through action or inaction, itís what Iíve Created.

This type of path is what leads people to the brink of suicide, but Iím certainly not there yet. Iím too scared of death, though you wouldnít know it. Everything points to the idea that Iíve been too convinced that I need to endure an awful lot of suffering here on earth before Iím able to relax into anything as potentially unfettered as the hereafter. Iíve been ensuring that the suffering continues in every way possible.

Why this self-hate, this preoccupation with feeling undeserving, with setting all the props in place to ensure minimal happiness [even while certainly surrounding myself with a modicum of comfort]?

Does this all qualify as Histrionic?

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Being in the presence of Cody forces me to confront all the choices Iíve made and those I have declined to make. I see the path traversed from Point A to Point Z: a truly hideous, often embarrassing and degrading alphabetic journey.

There needs to be life beyond Cody [and perhaps beyond Wilhelm, for that matter], but romantic relationships are far down my list of essential action items at the moment. Part of me still wonders: If not now, When? [The implication being, Iím not getting any younger; i.e., healthier.] Yet, I know I need to seriously, seriously work on some deeper, personal, solitary things if I am ever to enter into any sort of union with anyone. Itís something Iíve been missing for so long Ė and sense my longing for every single day Ė but Iím not yet confident that itís something I could ďdo rightĒ at the moment...

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So when will I set up the next coffee date with Cody? I canít let three-plus years pass again like this (not the least reasons being that time and geography are luxuries I canít ensure). How will I tell him everything? Do I need to tell him everything? (I know, even as I ask myself, that the answer is certainly Yes...)

I think Iíll be writing to him tomorrow (or maybe even now) to try to explain at least a little of this.

I also think Iím feeling Ė just a little Ė better.

[And Iím happy for him because he certainly deserves it.]

En esta historia sůlo yo me muero
y morirť de amor porque te quiro,
porque te quiero, amor, a sangre y fuego.
~ Neruda, Soneto LXVI

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