Ronin of the Spirit

Because reality is beautiful.

More icky personal growth stories (Or, why after 9 years I still think about my first girlfriend)

I haven’t written in months and I still have nothing to say. What DO I say? I could talk about the how much I hate Mississippi, but I’ve already done that, and besides, now that its nearly September, its not nearly so bad out. I could talk about the things in my life I am trying to change, but I’ve found over the years the fastest way to not change is to tell everyone how much you want to change and what your plan is for doing it.
I don’t want to talk about religion. I don’t want to talk about the Air Force. I don’t want to complain about the government, and I can’t anyway. I’m lonely. I love my wife. I love my daughter. But, I’m lonely. I dreamed the other night that I ran into my ex-girlfriend. Some times dreams are surreal, sometimes they are poignant, sometimes so real they are fake. But this was just real. We talked, made pointless chit chat and went on are way. I don’t miss her, I’ve nothing to say to her. There is no reason for me to dream about her, but I still do from time to time.
Usuallyit happens when I am very lonely. Maybe it reminds me of when I was young man, 16 to say 19 years old. I was desperately pathetically screwed up.
I mean I was really really jacked up. And I’ve never understood why. My parents were never physically abusive (Ok, rarely.) And only occasionally verbally abusive. They didn’t really do anything to hurt me. So I couldn’t figure out why I was so broken inside. And then it hit me. Its true. They never did anything to hurt me. They never really did anything at all. The never encouraged us to be our best or to really do anything at all. I can’t really remember my parents talking to me between the ages of about 9 and 14. Until I could hold down an adult conversation with them, they simply didn’t have anything to say to me unless they were disciplining me or telling me why I could not do something that they perceived to be dangerous, even socially dangerous. I could not play football. I could not play basket ball. I could not play baseball. I was told that people in my family are poor athletes and could never be competitive at such things. This, of course, is a self fulfilling prophecy. If you are told you can’t catch, run, or hit a ball AND you’re mother and father refuse to ever go out to play with you (My parents played outside with us all of three times in my whole life.) Then, of course when you do have to do these things at school you look like an idiot and everyone laughs at you, so then you really don’t want to do it. I wasn’t allowed to go to boyscout meetings. I was strongly discouraged from actively participating in my church.
So I had no real social outlet. I had no close friends. As a result I spend a lot of time alone, and a lot of time fantasizing about being much cooler than I really was, and reading constantly.
Well, none of those things help you fit in. When I tried to be friends with people I often found I couldn’t, because what I thought a friend was and what they thought a friend was so radically different. I would get close to people and they would find the constant maintenance of my bruised ego to be draining, and leave me. So I got more afraid of getting close and it got harder and harder to do so. And on and on.
At Bible college I met this girl. She like me a lot. I told some of my big hurts in life, the things I was afraid of in myself. And she accepted me and told me she loved me. Now, she was 18. She had no business telling me she loved me. We weren’t good for each other in a lot of ways. We broke each other in a lot of ways. For a long time I thought the only thing I wanted to say to her was, “I’m sorry.” Eventually I did. Now, I realize the one other thing I wanted to say.
It seem doubtful that I’ll ever talk to her again. When I apologized (and she apologized) we talked some and decided not to pursue any kind of a friendship with each other, as we were both now with other people we loved dearly, and both of us had families to raise.
So, I will say this one thing here:

Thank you, Lydia.

Its not enough to be sorry for the crap. To really move on you’ve gotta accept the good too, and thats why 9 years later, she still crosses my mind. I think of her when I get the loneliest because she was the very first person who looked through the crap in my life and wanted me anyway. She wasn’t the last( which is why I am honesty very happy that both of us moved on.)
But she was the first.


October 21, 2007 - Posted by | Uncategorized


  1. Your comments here are probably going to hurt the feelings of a few people who love you, you know? I’ll comment myself, more specifically, in person.

    Comment by CC | October 23, 2007 | Reply

  2. COMPOST HAPPENS…. The old dead things are chopped up… mixed up … they heat up….and they turn into something good and worthwhile. The old dead things are part of your history. When you were 8, we celebrated it by your mother having cancer surgery and starting a year of chemotherapy and radiation. You had already found your father had been a closet drunk and junky since before you were born and now he was dealing with that. When you were 9, your parents separated and the whole family teetered on the edge of collapse. When you were 10 the school offered us the choice of putting you on medication or into special ed. We homeschooled you instead. From that point there was no extra time for ANYTHING. It all went to educating you and your sister. Often 16 to 20 hours a day you had the undivided attention of one or both parents. Your dead, chopped up peices heated up and became wonderful. You graduated with a 4.0. We bragged and still brag about you constantly. We screwed up. We made mistakes. We did so many things and said so many things we would love to take back. But a year ago this summer I watched you graduate from Basic and found you in the crowd and before you hugged me… you saluted me. The old army private had never been saluted before. I cried. And I hugged you. I’m crying now. Compost DOES happen… and sometimes it’s watered with tears.

    Comment by RiverRatRanger | October 27, 2007 | Reply

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