Sunday, August 21, 2011

Journal 55 Backdrop

In reality, the backdrop of an interesting life is rarely static.
I think about this as I muse on this Sunday evening after a day spent on my own, like so many days recently, where my own company is all I can really tolerate, or want to drink in.
Quiet time. That is the journal entry I will write this evening, in my fawn-coloured journal, after re-reading my Aug 17 entry, again, barely able to decipher my own handwriting.
I have a section in my first entry entitled "Keywords" and these are, according to my definition in my journal are "when a phrase/thought/string of language will not leave me alone, and it seems to mean that it needs to be woven in somewhere".
I guess backdrop is a keyword.
I started this entry, with the first line, in mid-July, and really I have no idea what I was striving for when I thought up that line. It doesn't seem to relate to anything I'm thinking right now, except parts about the recurring thoughts I have about my life not resembling one of most people in my age bracket.
There are differences, marked ones.
I thought of this as I ran along Queen Street in the searing humidity yesterday: there are two types of people in this city--the ones who will actually stand in line and wait to eat brunch, like lemmings going off of a cliff, and me. There is no judgment in this statement--it's the same sentiment that makes me avoid small talk, or meeting new people when I really don't want to, or not trying new foods, because I already like the ones I currently eat. It's insane, it's over-the-top, it's me. That's my backdrop. Off the beaten path.
Where was I going with this? Ah, nowhere really.
I was just sitting on the grey couch, in my particular spot, watching evening slope over me, the shadows on the walls, reading Nelson Mandela's "Conversations with Myself" and his observation about his mother's last visit to him when he was in prison. He watched her walk away to catch the boat to the main land, and he suddenly had the bone-deep thought that he would never set eyes on her again. And he was right, she did die, that was her last visit.
That's another backdrop. Those things you just know, know in your bones, as truth, and so often you deny these truths based on the backdrop of whatever is distracting you about these things at the time.
I guess it could be denial, but it could also be a form of self-protection. I'm pretty certain that when I really need to bury something, it's because I just can't take the pain of it away at the time.
I think about meditation, I think about reading and writing and running as meditation, then I finish my glass of wine and stare off into space for a bit, thinking of life, death, the power of loss, the insistence of memory, of how random my memories can be at time, and how much denial colours them in. I think of my old friend G. and how long it had been since I had seen him prior to his untimely death. I think of the regret that rises in me, that tastes like metal, in the sad twisted end of our friendship. I think of my Dad's useless treatments and more regret waves over me. I think of Family Day, 2010, the last time my Dad would ever be at my apartment. I think of my birthday party last year and how much my parents wanted to come but couldn't make the trek. I can't remember much else about any specific events, the 'lasts' of last year, and something tells me that when the pain has rubbed off a bit, my memories of these events will return. I'll remember the funny parts. My Dad's grins as we laughed at stories, the envelopes of mail he would send me with articles he thought would interest me.

Backdrop. Your life continues, you do all those things you are supposed to do, plan, organize, discipline your self to eat properly, exercise, and pray, against the backdrop of some sadness, some pain, and some regrets.
And you get up the next morning and do it all again.
Evenings fill me with the most wonder, before I sleep and drift away, before I forget it all again.

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