Let me preface: we have not moved yet. In four weeks of looking, we have not found anywhere that meets our expectations for a new home.
After tonight, I’m setting one, single standard: NO. FLOODING.
See, the living room ceiling?- yeah, it looks better when it’s not on the floor. Like it is now. Again.
I am a font of bile and rage. I can barely enunciate the magnitude of the smallest fraction of anger I am feeling. If I’d not had these past few weeks of exhaustive introspection, I would have reservations saying it’s a fault of my own that we are here to deal with it still. (Un?)Fortunately, that is not the case. I think knowing this – instead of blindly assuming it – awakens a rage in me traditionally saved for Tolkienian orcs and dragons.
The biggest problem I’ve had is that I’m hard to read when I’m angry. I shut down all emotive output. The only way to tell I’m upset is by how lacking my emotional output is. When poked, it flows like a swarm of hornets ripping flesh apart through the concerted effort of a thousand needles.
I have only been angry like this a few times in my life. It is such a rare occurrence that I get angry, I can track the few times it has been exceptional. When I graduated high school; several months before my wedding; holiday planning a few years back; Verizon local services. Oh god, how I loathe Verizon.
When I graduated high school, it was quite the grand gala. I was quite excited, because there’d been a lot of doubt about whether or not I’d graduate on time. When I transferred out of parochial school to public, a lot of the courses didn’t carry over. By ‘a lot’ I mean summer sessions every year in high school to make up the classes that I didn’t have any state accreditation in, despite having taken some variant at a parochial school.
It was amusing to tell people I was in summer school. Most would assume I was daft or some social deviant. Which, given my penchant for wide legged jeans in 95 degree weather, they’d be closer on the former than the latter. I liked those pants in the warm weather: just enough of a breeze on the nether regions. That’s part of what scares me about these skinny legged jeans; having all of that squeezed against my body. Seems like you’d need a hard enough kick to shove all that into your abdominal cavity before trying to put those pants on. That, or you need to fold it all back Silence of the Lambs style.
I would cover four classes each over two summer sessions. I was a busy, busy boy. I was still working as a paperboy. I also had a job washing dishes. I did not care for this job, and at one point, came back from visiting my mother rather ill. There’d been a weird flu variant going around, to which I chocked it up. I left work early one day because of it, and was never scheduled again. Life lesson learned there: I should have quit before doing summer school.
So, with that all completed, I finished high school on time. There were parades (which I was in); there was a band playing (which I was in); there were shoes (which I was not in). The celebration was fantastic, and then it fell back to my father’s house. We had cake – with real whipped topping. Using a sweetened whip instead of icing meant much less sugar, I think. It also meant your body didn’t process any of the exorbitant food dyes that would then pass directly to your large intestine. It was like making my own confetti cake streamers.
My mother had been at the graduation. There was tension between us still, but I wanted to just keep on moving with our lives, and see how we fit together as family. In the year or so since I had started talking to her again, things had been growing well.
I’ll say this, and leave the subject be for now: I am always happy to forgive, but I never forget. Learning from a life’s worth of examples as the last of three children, I knew the best solution for a problem was to settle it, and never go near it again. A scab that needs picking will be picked; resist it, and the wound heals with minimum scarring. Since this time, that has been a principle I’ve hung my hat on.
Her charming boyfriend was with her. I mean that sincerely- he was a nice guy. He shared a lot of her interests, was religious, and really dug her. Hell, he taught me how to play Madden football on my Playstation, which was kind of cool. So, it’s understandable that I was so shaken by him trying to break down the door to my father’s house ten minutes after graduation.
There was a lot of miscommunication. That’s the easiest way to sum up what started, maintained, and ended this situation. My mother had disappointed me by telling me several days before my graduation she would not be in attendance. I was generally dismissive to help her feel better about it, but I was pissed. Maybe a bit saddened. It was a hell of an achievement, and she just wasn’t going to be there. I don’t remember the method now, but she was able to come at the very last minute. I was less than amicable, but I was still willing to let her be a part of the day to this point.
My father did one of those ‘fatherly’ things that I do admire him for now, but didn’t understand then. If I wanted her to come into his house that was fine: but he didn’t want the boyfriend to come in. As I’ve grown older, I understood where he was coming from. The boyfriend did not. He tried kicking the door in, wedging his body into the jamb so hard it was permanently bent. He got in a fist fight with my uncle and brother.
There was a lot of bad blood that I’d tried to make less so. It was, by now, tainted, but not toxic. Part of me just didn’t care about maintaining a relationship with someone that would be so aggressive. It was history repeating, and that was, ultimately, why I moved in with my father. I went upstairs and literally cried. Like a bitch. I knew someone had to go out, tell her to take him and leave, and I didn’t want it to be me. I just wanted to enjoy a damn day that was about me celebrating my ass off.
Somewhere around the fist fight, I walked right past el boyrfriendo. I walked to my mother’s car. I felt every ounce of emotion drip from my fingertips as I stated that we were done there. She needed to take him and go home; I wanted none of that at my party. I would later expand that summary to a view of life.
It sucks to have to look at something toxic in your life and cut it out. It does; I get it. So much emotional energy is required, and the exchange barely seems worth it. Along this vein, moving apartments seems exhausting, but it has to happen. I didn’t want to leave my last job, because it just felt easier to stay. Rae would like to have just one day of not feeling congested, but just can’t get the energy. I think I get it – her not feeling well: it’s easy to muster up all my strength to focus my life to go one way or the other, but when you have so many stresses bogging you down at once, it’s hard to pull yourself up with all of their weight attached. I get it now, I really do.
That’s what this is: the event horizon of a situation that with a little more in either way could be a saving grace or a goddamned nightmare of plagues. I think I’ve done a good job standing on the sidelines; time for me to get in and play ball.