It’s the details that get ya

SO maybe last week, or the week before, a guy walking down the street caught my attention. Maybe it was the purpose in his stride or the moderate amount of muscle. So I was looking and then my mind said, ‘not that much different to you’ and the deeper part of my mind said, ‘nah, not that much different’. And I didn’t want him anymore, because why want what you already have? Six months ago I’m not sure these thoughts would have been flying around my brain.

I’ve had three sessions of counseling in the past three months; I have another one next week. And this is the main thing I am getting out of it: the ability to think about my thinking, to question my assumptions and to work towards truer beliefs. Like we were doing this thing for social anxiety issues and the counsellor said there is an event that leads to a feeling or action and we have to dispute the beliefs that mean something leads to something else. I’ve been using it. The other week I was going to my SSA group and as usual I was nervous and I didn’t know what belief I was meant to be disputing. I was ‘why am I nervous?’ ‘what am I believing?’ ‘what is getting to me?’. Nothing really came and then I wasn’t that nervous anymore. The most common belief I seem to be disputing is the ‘there’s a risk I’ll stuff up here’ ‘people might see you’re not capable and in control’ ‘you might make a mistake’. I’m like some kind of closet perfectionist.

Other than that counselling is weird. The other month he, the Christian counsellor guy I found, said ‘did I mention I have two gay sons?’ ‘uh no, you didn’t’. Or he goes (paraphrase): ‘I think this century Christianity will embrace homosexuality like they did with women in the last’ ‘what am I doing here’.  As well after two sessions of counselling I always wonder what I’m doing there and the counsellor seems to as well. So we’ve stopped talking about SSA because I ran out of things to say and he doesn’t think half the things that are problems are actually problems. Just focusing on a few social anxiety issues and then I’ll be done.

Anyway I look at the guy on the street and I think ‘we could be brothers’. It seems I’m making progress and then a week later I have my biggest fall in six months. I can trace the fall: I was tired after taking photos and driving around for five hours, I was bored and those temptations weren’t going away with a simple ‘no’. Maybe it was deeper as well. There’s this little problem that afflicts me that I don’t feel lots of things at the surface. Sure I feel nerves and embarrassment, but deep pain and deep happiness seem to allude me. Sometimes if the event is powerful enough it makes it to my face or my eyes, but lots of the time events affect me below my consciousness. It makes it hard to do the belief dispute stuff and to deal with whatever is affecting me at any given moment.

What I’m getting at is that early last week my manager at the newspaper was in a tad of trouble with the top bosses and looked like he might be going byes byes soon. This man has been one of the big healing things in my life in the past six months. Two years ago, when he first arrived here in dairy land, I looked at him and I saw someone different to me. He seemed to be better, to be cooler and I couldn’t speak proper sentences around him and I was desperate for him to notice me and deal with me. So I acted like a two-year-old who wants attention. But then in July last year the office was rearranged and I was sitting near him instead of in the other room. So we would talk more about everyday incidents and it went from there. And now I don’t feel so nervous around him. I don’t feel he is so different to me. I wonder whether the news he might be going soon hit me hard beneath my consciousness, but I wasn’t feeling anything on top.

Falling and looking at porn has a way of making me numb and cold. After not doing it for ages I could notice the difference it made to my attitude and thinking. To be totally honest, and why not here in xangaworld, I kind of liked that numbness. I liked walking down the street and seeing a guy, not the aforementioned one, who last year had made me silly nervous when I passed him and then today…nothing much. It was just the numbness brought on by the weekend internet exploring binge. I know numbness is bad for me and caused by bad things. But it can make the day a bit easier when feeling hurts too much.

Someone, a young man, has been in my head and my thoughts for about half a year or so. It’s funny cause that’s right where part of me wants them to be and making my heart flutter. Argh, I’m dealing with it like a crazy 15-year-old. And everytime I try to deal with it with someone I know in person; it just doesn’t seem to get beyond ‘this is the problem…’ stage for whatever reason. So today I stand before you all and say ‘I’ve had enough’. I’m going to battle this infatuation and deny it oxygen so it dies a quick death. It annoys me that here I am six months later because imagine if three weeks into this infatuation I had have tried hard to kill it. Now it would be gone and it wouldn’t be much of a problem. This infatuation has been the dominant SSA problem of the past six months. (Yes, I know. A lot of blogs and I haven’t mentioned it). I feel like sometimes it has been helpful in weird ways, but it has to go. And so I must I. ’Til next time.

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He did nothing

MARK Driscoll was shouting at me earlier. “The great sin of Adam and the great sin of the sons of Adam is DOING NOTHING; THAT IS YOUR SIN.” It’s in reference to Genesis 3:6 when Eve eats the fruit in the Garden of Eden and gives some to her husband “who was with her,” but not fighting for her as the serpent spoke or stopping her from eating the fruit.

 

It convicts me. A lot. I have a tendency to be passive; to hang back; to avoid the tough moment and so on. It goes deeper than that. I don’t naturally look for opportunities to initiate or take action. I don’t walk into a room and think what can be done? Twenty-three years of passiveness and reacting rather than initiating haven’t helped. My lack of initiating can even be a problem when people instigate something with me. I’m so stunned by their forthrightness that instead of initiating in response and throwing my weight around a tad; I end up following whichever direction their conversation or action leads me.

 

Sometimes I feel like I have spirals of passive avoidance similar to escalations of lust. Today at church I was in a new situation helping with children’s stuff and I avoid one responsibility and then the next instant I am avoiding another and then I’m being passive when I should be initiating some course of action and I end up feeling like I’ve emasculated myself.

 

I despise, yes this much, other men when they do nothing. My boss at work when he sounds nervous speaking to me as he’s been avoiding dealing with a qualification recognition issue for two months and I’ve reminded him about it the day before. Or my dad is sitting passively at the kitchen table spending hours and hours watching mindless television program after silly television show, as people deal with problems around him that he shows no interest in engaging with.

 

This issue, this failure to frequently initiate in tough situations, is the number one reason I’m nowhere near ready for a girlfriend. If I can’t be a man for myself; how can I lead another? If when stressful situations happen I’m waiting for her lead it’s only going to result in frustration on both of our parts.

 

The reason this failure to launch is such a big problem for myself is partly because of personality. I’m always going to hang back more than some. So I’m not too hard on myself. Though I’m working to be better and just realising it and thinking about it has helped.