Monday, March 21, 2016

Sharing My Favorite Things...

Here it is, the second day of spring, and it's snowing.  What do you expect for Maine?  So, today I find myself a bit under the weather, both figuratively and literally, as my throat is sore and I'm feeling a bit flushed.  It's a dreary day all around.  What better time to ramble on about myself?

I know a few of you still read this blog, though I don't post nearly enough to expect a dedicated following.  While I'm slowing coming out of my post-divorce rut, I still have a long way to go.  You don't get over something like that overnight, but there is light at the end of the tunnel.  Mind you, it may still be a few years before I'm truly myself again.

In life, I am sometimes seen as standoffish, or distant.  It comes from my introverted personality, which is a core part of who I am, and not something I can turn on and off. For the longest time, I am kept to myself.  Though at times I am able to expose bits and pieces of myself through writing or online exposure, it is not so easy to put myself out there, or share what lurks inside my heart.

Going into my personal life, there are times I have found it particularly uncomfortable, scary even, to reveal myself, my like and dislikes, my favorite things; that which I most enjoy.  Or rather, I find it difficult to share what I like with those who are closest to me.  With strangers?  Sure, I can say I like xyz.  But when it comes to those who are important to me, with those I love the most, there are times I am afraid to share.

I remember when I was growing up, I would sometimes feel embarrassed to share what I was doing with my parents.  I would shut off the television or record player when they came around.  I would pause a video game and turn the screen off, so as not to be asked what it was I was watching or doing.  I wasn't even doing anything they'd find objectionable; I just felt silly letting them know.  Don't ask me why.

In later life, as I grew up and got married and had kids, I started to feel a little more willing to open up.  I shared my activities with my wife, though in many cases she wouldn't enjoy what I was doing.  After we had kids, she lost interest in the seemingly insignificant things that I enjoyed, though she never really cared that I did them, except on occasion when she'd say they were either boring or stupid.  It didn't hurt me at the time, because I grew accustomed to doing things by myself again—and so the television programs I loved the most and the games I liked to play, and the hobbies and projects I played around with all ended up being done in private, away from prying eyes.  I can't count the hours I spent in my office watching Doctor Who or Stargate, or some other damn thing when I didn't feel like writing.  Or the hours I spent working on my cars out in the yard.  Or the time I spent working on watches, or guns.  Or the odd hour I spent playing some "boring" video game like Sid Meier's Civilization.

I won't complain that my ex-wife drifted away from me.  That's all over now.  But I find that I still have a problem sharing my life with certain people.  It may seem stupid, but the shows I watch, the games I play, the stuff I do for fun; it's all an integral part of who I am, and sharing that can be scary, especially when the person you're sharing it with is important to you, and you want to spend time with them, and it can hurt when they say "I can't get into that."  If they say it enough, it ends up being a rejection of who I am, and so I return to my familiar pattern of hiding and doing things by myself.

Okay, maybe I'm getting a bit carried away here, but I'm feeling feverish, so cut me some slack.

Overall, I am a sensitive fool, who keeps everything to himself because he doesn't want anyone's rejection to hurt him.  It's just who I am.

Yeah, so the point of all this comes down to something quite simple, and only really applicable to those close to me.  It is an effort for me to share things.  Something as trivial as a song, or a movie.  So, when I take this leap, to share something that I enjoy, please try to realize how big a move that is on my part, how much I'm putting myself out there.  Understand that my wanting to do something with you is special, as I'm someone who has spent a lifetime enjoying things alone.  Please know how rare you are, if you have the opportunity to have me ask you to sit down and watch something with me, and humor me if it's not something you're accustomed to, as I have done for those few people who are important to me.  I remember many shows I would never have watched, if not for my kids or ex-wife, or someone else special to me, who wanted to share.  That's what relationships are all about.  Sharing.  Because what's the point of being with people who are so alien in their tastes that they can't tolerate each other's favorite things?

Damn it, I really feel like watching Doctor Who about now...

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