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January 10th, 2009

talking with leo... @ 06:39 pm

Talking with Leo

i was talking with leo last night
after soaking in salt water for over an hour
feeling like i was dead
a big cold stiff dead corpse

these things happen sometimes
Leo called me as i was near finished
on the phone with him
i put my house to sleep
and crawled into bed
chatting with Leo until his cord-less phone's battery died
and my iPhone battery nearly died


we're still dear friends
we love our conversations
once a week
or every other
or a few times...
we almost always talk for an hour

Also, he almost always gets me into some explanation of my life
where i describe things i've been aware of that i've been very unhappy with
come to some unsatisfactory conclusion of. . .
he listens
and often says
"but hearing you say this makes me proud of you
because you are Aware of your life
and in that
you are growing
you are much better than most
who aren't aware
and just continue blindly through their lives, no matter how miserable they become"

i suppose i'm always just on the surface
able to breathe and swim and see the sights and beauty
but still a good deal of my body swimming through the misery.

last night we were talking about my "break up" with a recent friend
i'd known this guy for just over a year
and i told him over and over and over that i didn't want a boy friend
but it just kept falling into that
easy: something about him and something about me just clicked
i got to be his dad, his idol, and some of the people that had hurt him in the past
he got to be my mother and... me as a kid.

as the relationship developed
i was able to see these relationships coming up clearly
within a few months
i already had him pegged as my mother
and within a month of that
i saw myself acting as my father did towards me

i desperately tried to re-direct the energy
i asked him to do the work, of course
"don't try to please me: it will only give me reason to be disappointed in you"
i tried warning him
"when i act like this just LEAVE... i can't stop myself and don't want to do it"
but he sat there and allowed himself to be hammered upon

even in the stories i told Leo about my recent trip home
it became apparent that my friend acts how i do towards my father even now
when my father kept blowing up at me
i would remain calm and silently mock him
my friend never mocked me (he's not so cruel)
but he would just let me explode and not really respond
this drove me crazy because i THOUGHT i was being an asshole and causing him so much pain
AND i felt like he wasn't listening to me or taking anything i said seriously

it was a lose/lose situation as far as i could see
so after trying to months to change my actions and not being able to
i had to cut it off

i have a lot more peace since then
and time and space to be able to see OTHER things i am dissatisfied with in my actions
but without the confusing projection and blaming i was doing before
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Date:January 17th, 2009 04:57 am (UTC)

Just read your updated entries

Hi,Dominic -
Jim from Lincoln, NE here. Just read your most recent entries. I can empathize with you about the dad thing. Of course, I've communicated some of my history in that area to you before. It wasn't until I was 57 that I had a fairly permanent relationship/boyfriend/lover. Prior to that, I managed pretty well alone with a wide circle of good friends and tricks. The only times I ever really felt I wanted/needed someone was when I'd walk or drive home after a really successful concert I'd conducted and arrive to an empty apartment, needing someone with whom to share that. At the end of my career, my boyfriend was very good about that - especially coming to my church services (and he was Roman Catholic while I played/conducted at a very liberal Congregational/UCC church). He also joined my sister and my friend of longest standing (lives in NYC, have known her since first grade in Ohio) at my farewell celebration at the church and to hear me give the Baccalaureate address (which the kids had invited me to do) the following evening at the school where I taught. Now that I'm out here and he's stayed back East (VT to Whitehall, NY), I feel that lonliness again, now that I'm retired. I'm not sure just how good a partner I'd be nor the degree of success I could maintain a relationship now. Don't ask too much of the young man who idolizes you. And bask in the warmth of your friendship with Leo. And remember, too, the joy, warmth, and love you've brought to so many guys whom you've befriended, attended to professionally and enlivened with your unique personality and philosophy. They revel in the attention and respect you offer them. You share your gift of humanity with unqualified generosity.

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