“I don’t know”, she smiled sadly. Her eyes drifted away from me and she was gone. And I was still here.
My fingers began gently tapping on the table, fidgeting to feel present. I was tempted to lose myself into daydream with her, but I remembered we would each be in our own, and not intertwined. What was the point of that?
I didn’t want to hold her captive in the present, so I let her be. But how my heart longs when she’s so far – just across this small diner table – but so far. She’ll come back eventually, I remind myself, after how many ever eternities. I’ll wait.
Her gaze lowered. She was returning.
With a blink, her eyes gazed back at mine, sad from memories she had just re-lived. An unknown that I couldn’t trespass upon.
“I don’t know”, she repeated, more tired than before. No smile this time.
I grew angry at the thought of her deserting me for her thoughts, again. She has needs, that’s just how she is. It’s selfish. You don’t know what she’s going through. It’s unfair that she won’t open up to me. She doesn’t need to. You just need to be there. I can’t do this anymore. You’re going to leave her because you can’t fix her? She’s not yours to fix. I can’t do this anymore. The conditions you place on your love are so hypocritical. I was wrong. I can’t do this anymore.
“You’re doing it again.” she said.
I returned my gaze to hers and felt my brow relax.
“What were you thinking about?”
Her chest rose. And fell.
“It might not be me, but please find someone to talk to.” I couldn’t tell if it was worry or impatience that tinged her voice.
Why are you so distant? Where do you go when your gaze falls from me? Why can’t you take me with you? Please take me with you. “Okay.”
“What’s on your mind?” she asked.
“Nothing.” Pry harder, I begged. If you cared, you’d pry harder. Show me you care.
She pursed her lips and looked down. Her chest rose. And fell.
“Why won’t you open up to me?”
No, this wasn’t the direction that I-
“I’m trying so hard but you- ”
I retreated into my head.
I just wanted to know you cared. You were so close.
On our way to badminton tonight, an ominous, horror-movie-set fog had settled. My brother was driving and I was in the passenger seat. We seldom had quality one-on-one time and it was a great excuse to talk. So talk we did.
We talked about his girl problems. My girl problems. My bout with anxiety. Him smoking and trying to quit. Mom. Dad.
He brought up the question of when I wanted to come out to Dad. I consider myself pretty good at reading people… but my dad is a brick wall. He’s absolutely impossible to read. I knew at his very core, he’d love me no matter what… but his reaction to me being gay was unfathomable to me. My brother asked me again when I wanted to come out to him. I said I wasn’t sure, but it wasn’t anything urgent – not until I got me a gf anyway and was dying to show her off to my family. No rush, I said, it’s just something on my to-do list.
I was deeply irritated that my brother chose the rural route in the midst of this fog – our vision went no further than three metres and roads were icy. His rationale for not taking the highway made absolutely no sense and I won’t even bother repeating it. I forced him to pause conversation until we made it out of the fog.
Then we continued talking.
As we were pulling into our driveway from badminton, he asked again “so when do you plan on telling Dad?”. He usually never hangs on to something like this; something must’ve been bugging him.
I reiterated my answer earlier that evening (with patience of course), about how I wasn’t sure how he’d take it but he seemed okay with being on Church Street the few times I took him.
I did a double-take.
I could be wrong.
But it bothers me that (I think) she sees sadness as a hindrance.
I could be wrong about her thinking this.
But I find the ability to appreciate sadness and melancholy beautiful. Without romanticizing depression, there’s a complexity to these emotions that takes real ingenuity to be able to portray in art – whether in musical or visual form. When done well, oh it’s so beautiful. The quiet of a piece that speaks so loudly.
I don’t think I can fall in love with someone who cannot appreciate that.
But I’m getting ahead of myself.
Recently, I’ve been coming back to a conversation I’ve had with YOLObro. We’re both fairly straight forward, pure-hearted types who wear our hearts on our sleeves – we don’t play games and we fall head first into emotions. We bonded over that… but at one point he painted it in a negative light.
We noted “the game” that people play – playing “hard to get”.
We agreed it’s a psychological trick that makes someone want something more – we want something more when we know we can’t have it.
We agreed neither of us bothered with these games.
But he took it one step further and said “but that’s why people who play these games “get the girl””. I couldn’t disagree – I’ve been fighting it for a long time but it seems that way and there must be a reason why being slow and straight-up hasn’t worked for me thus far.
Do I have to resort to taking advantage of human psychology to get the one I want?
This has been a 2am stream-of-consciousness post.
At the behest of several gays, namely F and J, I’ve been doing plenty of personality quizzes.
According to the Nine Types quiz, I’m a Type 5. Here are some highlights:
- Seeks Privacy
Focus of Attention
- Gaining Knowledge and Wisdom
- Protects Themselves from a World That Asks Too Much
Basic Fear: Being Incompetent and Helpless
The Investigator or Fives, are thinkers who prefer to withdraw in their own world and simply observe, rather than take part in human drama. They are usually well-read, intelligent, thoughtful, and become experts at their area of interest. This is due to Five’s desire to master whatever they spend time on, which stems from their fear of not having enough internal resources to cope with the world.
What they fear they lack are the inner resources necessary, such as time and energy, to cope with life. They tend to hoard these resources, and protect them fiercely. This is the reason for their detachment. They don’t want to be imposed upon. In order to protect themselves from an intrusive world, and from insufficient resources, Fives take refuge inside their minds. They detach from feelings and rejects claims to their time, energy and emotions. They reduce their needs and focus on pursuing self-sufficiency.
This personality does not like putting themselves in a position of vulnerability. They are non-intrusive and very independent.
Advice for Challenges Fives deal with:
- Try to get in touch with your emotions, and let others in once in a while.
One of the most disappointing things about having caught feels for the Asian girl is the time and energy I feel that I’ve wasted in investing them in her. I’ve told her so much about myself with minimal ROI, and it just feels like I could’ve spent that time and those stories on someone else. This description of a Type Five holding tightly onto such resources rings so true, particularly in this scenario, for me.
I’m independent af, this is true. It’s interesting that whenever I go to someone for emotional/girl-related problems, one of the first things they tell me is that I’m overthinking things… Yet there was no mention of “overthinking” as a weakness. It’s the literal bane of me.
I was catching up with an old friend from badminton today and told her about my dynamic with F and J (/and associated feelings) and she told me that as much as I’m assessing the situation, I’m putting far too much weight on things that don’t matter – e.g. wanting to address whether one has feelings for another and if that even matters. It’s irrelevant.
So I drafted an email to myself for a New Year’s Resolution – Stop overthinking. If this year has taught me anything, it’s that thinking can be detrimental to your mental health after a certain point. It won’t be as simple as that – I’ll have to recognize when I’m overthinking (especially when it’s related to feelings) and deliberately re-direct my attention to something actually productive.
Whelp, recognition is the first step.
I’ve done pretty well with keeping my urgency for employment in check these past few months, but I’ve been getting antsy and stressed out recently. With my final presentation this past Monday, I’ve decided to switch gears fully to job hunting. It’s been incredibly hectic with everything going on in my career and my personal life and I… just need to write as my outlet for clearing and articulating my thoughts.
This will be a two-part post which will serve as a professional strategy for my career and a needed update on my personal / queer life.
Putting my Career in 6th Gear
Bridging that gap between urban planning and big data was just as hard as I’d thought. Before even jumping ship, I knew it was a risky move – the big data industry is in its infancy in Toronto and carving a city-building niche out of it here has been tough.
That being said, I have absolutely no regrets. Taking a break from working gave me time to work through and reflect on my own issues, and most importantly, it’s given me sufficient time to comfortably come out to my family and friends . I’ve gained so much more confidence this past summer because frankly, I went through a shit ton. I’ve always had a joie de vivre… but I’m coming to realize it’s always been confined to the circle of my career; I think the freedom of this year has allowed it to extend into my personal life. The feeling of “something I can never have” feels more artificial and I’m shaking my head smiling at how trivial my lesbian identity crisis was.
But money don’t grow on trees and mama needs cash for good timez.
I’m essentially up against engineers and programmers when it comes to data analyst jobs and I’m being judged on the same 5-year undergraduate criterion with my 4-month certificate course. I’ve also noticed that I miss the real estate and development industry. I miss looking at metrics and economics and city-building. My passion ignites every time I read an urbanism-related news article. I don’t think I can pull myself away from this field. So from here on, I’d pursue a career in:
- Real Estate Development
- Data analysis / land economics
- Urban Planning
As a step forward, I’ve started compiling a list of firms to check job postings for and they’re all in this field. I’m reaching out to people and getting back in the volunteering space with ULI.
I’ve seriously considered more precarious jobs, like working in marketing and project management – it won’t fulfill me to my soul as I’d hope with other things, but the important thing here is that I was okay with it. Quitting this summer, I’ve met more artists and freelancers than ever, and it goes against principles I was raised upon – e.g. “not having a stable job means you can’t get a stable job and treads closely to being a failure“.
Hey. If you have a roof over your head and you’re not starving… you’re more than okay. You’re so fortunate. Although I won’t be pursuing freelance work, coming to terms with this has instilled a sense of calm at my core that I find myself finding retreat in at desperate times.
I took a 5 hour break in between the last paragraph and this one and I seem to have lost my momentum for writing about my personal life. Whelp, here’s a lesson to get shit done as close as you can to when you first conceive of the idea.
…So there’s this girl.
And I feel like we like each other but I’m not sure and I’m trying to be vulnerable (let myself fall for her??? It gets blurry???) but I’m not too sure how to give myself to her. It’s emotionally frustrating. I’m good at loving; I’m bad at flirting. And so, unbeknownst to my objects of affection, I love silently until they think I’m disinterested and they walk away. I don’t know if it’s more tragic that this happens or that I know it happens. I keep reminding myself:
“just because someone doesn’t love the same way you do, doesn’t mean they’re not giving it their all”.
But I did get burned the last time I held this too tightly (as previously mentioned). I don’t know.
Let the chips fall where they may.
It was inevitable, but it only took a few months for Gay Drama ™ to catch on. Long story short, a downtown queer invited a three or so queers to go to O’Grady’s tomorrow, followed by dancing at Crews. It was a fairly small group compared to the usual Gaysian hangout which comprises 15 people on the reg.
Because there were only about 6 Gaysians going, I decided to extend the invite to a buncha other queers, including the tall blonde, the artist, and a handful of others. It’ll be an interesting mix. Oh, and I invited J.
It’ll be a good time. We’ll see how it goes.