Tuesday, October 1, 2002

...and she's afraid of clowns, too!

Hello, my wonderful superfabulous darlings! It's nearly midnight and I sit here typing because I know I have to. Not because I have something fun and amusing to say, not because I have a clever gripe to get off my chest, not because I'm all wired with energy and need the tappa-tappa of the keyboard to soothe my squirreling nerves. Well, actually, that's sort of true... I got about four hours of sleep last night, after a long and arduous (though thoroughly enjoyable) weekend and a long hard day at work, and today was another long hard day, and I'm just a bit punchy right now. But really, I just need to be honest, and I need to open myself to the World. Otherwise I don't think I will be able to sleep tonight, either.

I have been giving certain people a lot of room in my head, and I have to evict these squatters before they drive me completely insane.

To the ugly fat boy who called out "What's up, Faggot?" at me Sunday night outside of the Double Rainbow in San Rafael, I hope you discover your humanity before it's too late. But first, I hope you trip on a dandelion and break your front teeth.

To the people at work who drive me nuts: you are all assholes, beneath my contempt. You would be vastly improved by the witty repartee and scathing observations I stayed awake thinking about until 3 am this morning, leaving me punchy and stupid and brittle all day today. But you're not going to get any of my wit and scathe, because my Grandmother raised me a lady, and I'm better than that.

To the so-called President of our Country, George Blinking Idiot Bush: drop dead. The sooner the better. I don't like you. You and your ilk are destroying this country. Stop it.


Uhm. I came to an ugly realization about myself today. Actually, I came to this realization some months ago, but it is just now becoming clear to me that this Thing about myself has to be changed or I will become a miserable excuse for a less-than-human person.

To wit, I live with a great deal of fear. I am afraid of physical pain (to the point that I have to be in screaming abject pain before I will see a dentist, pain more acute than the remembered pain of the last dentist's visit). I am afraid of emotional pain (to the point that I allow no one to have emotional access, either incoming or outgoing). I am afraid of failure (to the point that I don't even do things lest I not succeed). I am afraid of confrontation (to the point that I allow people to walk all over me, then engage in hideous passive-aggressive behaviors in revenge). I am afraid of embarrassing myself (to the point that I hold myself in the strictest poise and decorum). I live in crawling cringeing terror of opening myself up to another person or other people, including myself and God, and being vulnerable to any of the above. And yes, I am afraid of clowns, too.

And this isn't just a sort of mental fear, a little resistance that can be pooh-poohed and faced. I mean, this is the kind of visceral fear that just thinking about it makes my heart beat faster and harder, makes my muscles tighten and quiver, makes my eyes unfocus, makes my hair fall out and my pores clog up. It keeps me awake at night. Like it did last night, when I thought about the angry hateful things I would like to do to that horrid drunken boy outside of Double Rainbow, but also thought about "what if there had been more of them than there were of me?"; when I think about quitting my job and looking for another one and having to be really poor for an undisclosed period of time; when I think of confronting people with my issues about them and/or admitting my own misdoings; when I think about being wrong (what if I'm wrong?) or being at fault or simply bumbling out a stupid faux-pas and having to apologize for it.

Fear sucks. It stops you from doing what you want to do. It's stopping me from being a better and happier person. It stops me from talking to people who interest me. It keeps me from being completely honest with myself and with others. It keeps me in the same job and the same house and the same situations that vex me.

The funny thing is that I habitually conduct myself as if I were fearless. I do things that other people might be afraid to do, like perform in drag and buy porn from little old Korean ladies and come out to my parents and squish spiders with Kleenex. I carry myself as if I weren't afraid of anything, only reasonably cautious about my safety and particular about my comforts. I even go so far as to claim in public that I am not afraid of things. I have such good, clear, reasonable reasons to stay in my job, my house, my singleness. But even when there are good and compelling reasons, the main reason is still Fear. Fear of change, fear of vulnerability, fear of the unknown.

So why am I telling you all this? Because I feel like I have to tell everyone. I have begun to fear my Fear. If I don't get a grip on it soon, it will devour my life.

This year is a Seventh Year, and so far there haven't been any changes in my life, as there have been in every other Seventh Year since I was born. And the reason there haven't been any changes is because I have allowed myself to descend into abject terror and yet to pretend that it is caution and prudence that keep my in my own particular rut, holding white-knucled to the edge of the pool while splashing my feet in a frolicsome manner, a smile on my face and terror in my eyes. And because I know perfectly well that there's no such thing as stasis in this universe: there is progress and there is decay... and if I am not progressing, I am ipso facto decaying.

I don't want to decay. I don't want to wallow in this fear anymore. And so I am writing it here in public where I will remember it (and where certain of my friends will remember it and recall it to my attention when next I slip), to proclaim publicly and, I hope, bravely (with my heart in my mouth and my hair falling out all around me), that Fear will no longer be allowed rule my life.

So there.

I have no idea how to implement this proclamation, though. I guess it will be revealed to me in the fulness of time. And speaking of revealing...

This is just how I feel right now... as if I've been pantsed in public. And my butt isn't as view-worthy as these, either.

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