“I’m trying not to be desperate, but my god – I can’t believe it – I think I’m desperate.”

I’m trying to rewrite my narratives, I swear to God I’m trying.

I spent last night rereading old entries here – what else is new – and to be honest, I feel a little proud of write-ups that though I don’t remember writing, I felt pleasantly surprised to unearth them. “I wrote this?” I’d ask myself. Then I’d beam for a quick second; genuinely moved. Growth, when traced on a good day, is indescribably moving.

But I also spent last night rereading entries written over the last two months.

Those that were written since relocating here. Those that touched upon… the same topics. Romantic love. Relationships. Religious boundaries. Constantly perplexed; accepting but frustrated. Overwhelmed. Tragically sad.

“I reread my blog entries last night and consciously or unconsciously, this frustration and fear of not wanting to do life alone is really getting to me. Because oh my goodness – I think my readers, by now, must think that I’m desperate.”

I need to rewrite my narratives, damnit.”

I confided in Eldest Sis tonight, about this confusion – growing feelings for an old, dearly loved friend – that  I am currently experiencing and fighting hard against. “No, not this again,” I told her, my voice cracking. “Don’t place something that isn’t there, there. Just because you’re lonely doesn’t mean you’ve to be sad. I keep reminding myself – not this again.

“He is…” I began, uncertain how to say this, “I think – especially in the beginning – whenever I was frustrated and overwhelmed by all the newness… he’s not so old a friend, but we’re old enough friends by now. So he’s someone I let my guard down totally with. On bad days, when the newness gets to me – he’s familiar. When I’m with him, I get to talk and act like myself again. I’m reminded of the girl I was, who I really am. Not a persona, but a real person. He’s familiarity itself.

“But I’m trying so hard not to fall for the same confusion – twice.”

“Because I’m lonely, I think. Because I’m tired, really tired, of doing life alone. I’m frustrated by this – so much that I want to change this, despite not knowing how. Objectively, I recognize that we share similar values and mentality – that’s why we’re still friends, after all – but that’s also all there is. When I try to think logically about the possibility of us, the reality is that we… don’t match. For instance, we’re both avid travelers yes, but with totally different styles. He’s the backpacker, hostel-living style. I’m… not those. We only get along in the realm of thoughts – this literally is why we’re friends.”

“But that’s also the thing I genuinely care about.”

“And you know… that pattern… it prevails. Always that specific demographic, always not Muslim. Even with the three friends I bonded with over the weekend – all three: Chinese, non-Muslims. It shouldn’t matter. This shouldn’t matter. I keep reminding and telling myself this but my god, on the other hand – again?! The patterns… they prevail. This frikkin’ preference, even when I’m already consciously trying so damn hard to diversify. Unlike Third Sis who’s so adamant not to be in a relationship and end up with a Malay guy – I’m trying, damnit. Forget it; I just need him to be Muslim.”

“Because I see it all the time, that religious boundary. That’s all I see; I’m too conscious of it. This line I cannot cross – one that I’ve come to accept and understand why it exists, but my god, even with friends – this frikkin’ pattern persists. This is as far as I can go, I think to myself, over and over again. For… how long more? That boundary line. ‘This is as far as I can go.’

Adulthood, in its cruelty, is teaching me of the many ways that my heart can break.

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One thought on ““I’m trying not to be desperate, but my god – I can’t believe it – I think I’m desperate.”

  1. “We only get along in the realm of thoughts – this literally is why we’re friends.”
    “But that’s also the thing I genuinely care about.”

    I swear, I’ve struggled with this my whole life- and not always in the romantic field of relationships. People I have no reason to like or be liked by. With the way I live, and my limitations – social limitations, especially my physical ones – I don’t connect to a lot of people. I try and I do things that are expected, like golfing this weekend with a young couple I met because they’re my peers and I’m supposed to get to know people, and the whole time I’m sitting here thinking, ‘I hate golf. I suck at it, and I hate it. And these people are… not like me. We have no connection. Am I just going through the motions…’ So when I meet people I DO have a connection with, in that realm of thoughts, I struggle not to cling on as if my life depended on it. ‘But stranger, you have no idea how much I want to be best friends because I’ve literally been missing this kind of outlet… wait, but we’re not similar and not even of the same generation, but so?’

    I’m in a new place right now, a new church, new people. And yes, I’m kind of desperate to find people who I can bond with. I’ve found a few- but as outsider, as a woman, as a married woman, I have to observe what’s correct, and that frustrates me. When the young women I meet are seemingly vapid, or whose situation in life leaves them with no room to consider me.. a stranger, a friend. It frustrates me how I connect more to certain men. ‘But mister, the things you talk about, think about, those mean more to me than discussions about why people don’t realize there’s a need for volunteer dishwashers after the potluck lunch.’ And then I feel guilty, as if these are bad thoughts all in themselves. But some people have an educated mind that appeals to me in a very deep way. I want to surround myself in that, is that so wrong?

    I’ve come to the conclusion that relationships are hard, and not just the intimate ones. Platonic connections are just as stressful as romance. I’ve whined so much to my husband about this, and he understands it exactly. We are both missing the people we once knew, that we’ve lost in recent months. It’s so hard, going on, putting ourselves out there.

    I’ve been catching up on some of your recent blogs.
    “Oh. You’re here. You came.”

    This describes me well right now. Not those words exactly, but that expression on peoples’ faces. I’m fighting back though. So what if I’m awkward and antisocial. So what if some people barely know my face and don’t remember my name. I have to start somewhere. And while it’s strange, and so very hard, there is progress there. In me, if not in others. To build something, I have to start somewhere first. To build connections that might grow into something closer to friendship, I have to go. I have to come.

    And then I go home and tally up my daily failures. And sulk.
    Why isn’t life easier than this? lol..

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