Hope.

Posted: January 4, 2012 in Uncategorized

This last week has not been good for me.

Oh, there’s certainly been good in it: Christmas with my family, time spent with friends, good news on the new job front. All fine and wonderful things, to be treasured and grateful for. And I am.

But on the way back from Wichita, my old friend Chronic Depression reared it’s damned head, and sent me spiraling down. I held it together to enjoy the visit of my dear Sharon and her man Gary, but right after that…

Right after that I lost something. Or rather, it felt like I lost something, because in truth, it was never mine to lose. What was mine to lose was the hope, the hope that what I wanted, however unlikely, could happen, and that tiny arrogance that it should. And it hurt. Oh, it hurt.

What that hope was for or who doesn’t matter. That’s not the important part. Don’t ask.

I wanted to rip that hope out of me so bad.

Some good friends saw that I was in pain and wouldn’t let me not share it, because that’s what friends do, and I was able to put into words the loss and pain and, yes, however completely unfair, the sense of betrayal, that I was feeling. That sense that something I thought mattered didn’t, that something I valued was gone, never to return. What I didn’t talk about was the anger.

Anger is something I keep a pretty tight reign on. My years of therapy taught me to keep a very close eye on all of my emotions, and sometimes that’s good. Sometimes it’s not. For anger it is. There are very few people I know who can say they’ve seen me truly angry, and that’s probably for the best… it’s not pretty. And I was angry. Angry for that sense of betrayal, angry for that sense of loss, and for believing that something that mattered, that matters to me, only matters to me. Angry for knowing, knowing that it did, long before this.

Angry at myself for hoping.

Before I got help, my undiagnosed depression led me once to a very dark place, and along the way I lost the woman I loved and the life we could have had together. I got help, I got better, and I deal with my… inconvenient brain chemistry. I watch myself all the time. I consider what I say, I consider how I act, I monitor… everything I do. It takes away a lot of spontaneity sometimes. Sometimes I don’t say how I feel when I should. Sometimes I let myself pull away from the world, and God knows I spend too much time alone, and I’m working on that. As more than one friend has pointed out, I’m harder on myself for many things than maybe I should be, and while there is much in my life I would change, I do have it pretty good. I have a job, I have friends, I make movies for heaven’s sake. I’ve been blessed with certain talents that mean I can write a story people want to see, that I can bring people together that want to help me tell that story, and when I let the ego out to play, I’m aware I’m not too damn bad at it. Of course I could be better, who couldn’t be? I try to be, every story I tell, and so far it seems to be working. I’m a good writer, a good director, a good editor, a good production designer, and although it’s been far too long since I picked up a paint brush, I’m a pretty good artist. But…

But there’s a reason my production company is called “just some guy”. Yes, there’s a Douglas Adams joke in there, but more so, it’s came about because most of the time I don’t have a terribly high opinion of myself. I see myself as, well, just some guy. What I can do aside, what I have done aside, I never have seen myself as someone terribly special, and periodically certain of my friends will slap me upside the head because of it. I am special… because my friends aren’t stupid, and wouldn’t be my friends if I wasn’t. Kind of insulting to them to not recognize that isn’t it?

But that’s the rational side of my mind talking. The side I try to let run the show most of the time. The side of my mind saying, “Look, you saw this coming, this isn’t really news… yeah it sucks, but hey, life is like that sometimes.” Unfortunately, that side was getting drowned out by the other side, that tightly held emotional side, the side that was screaming at the top of it’s lungs about it’s pain. Obviously that “tightly held” part doesn’t always work.

And it shouldn’t. It needs to come out from time to time, that emotional side. Perhaps that sense of loss wouldn’t have been so strong if I had let those emotions out a little bit to play. Perhaps I would have said things that might have made things different. I doubt it, and the truth is I’ll never know now. But perhaps. But because I carry those emotions so tightly, for someone who has no problem putting pieces of his life, or his feelings into a script, or getting on stage or camera to expose himself, I’m not terribly bold. I’m not bold in my personal life the way I am as a storyteller, or the way I am by even writing this down to post to the bleeding world. Of course writing this all out is a form of therapy, and you, dear reader, get to listen or not, but that part I can’t concern myself with.

What I can concern myself with is hope. I wanted to rip that hope out of me, to kill it so it couldn’t hurt me by being dashed. And I tried. I couldn’t, and thus we had pain. But the pain was real, the emotions were, and are, real, and the hope, well, the hope was and still is real. It’s a pointless hope, an unrealistic hope, but so often that’s what hope is. Nothing has changed except my knowledge of what I was holding onto and it’s relative worth to someone else. It’s my windmill to tilt at, not theirs, and tilting at windmills is kinda my thing.

But don’t be surprised if I seem a little more outspoken. Don’t surprised if I tell you what I feel when you weren’t expecting it. Don’t be surprised if I’m a bit less diplomatic. Don’t be surprised if you see sides of me you haven’t, because something I’ve kept tightly held inside until now is getting let out to play more. Because maybe, just maybe, it’s time to be a little bolder, to be a little bigger, to stand up for what I want and hope for more. It’s a little late for some things, but not for others, and while the company name isn’t going to change, because I like it thank you very much, it’s past time to stop being just some guy.

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