It’s time to get back on my bullshit.
The whole point of this project was to work through my trauma and rekindle the memories in my head, before they were lost in the fires of emotional scarring. Much like the infernos of California, the flames relit and blazed through thousands of acres in my head. All that is left are scorched thoughts and smoke.
Sorry to sound so bleak. It’s just part of my self analysis. Through all of this I have watched with interest to see how I respond and what effect it will have on me. What I have seen thus far is that it is undeniably morphing the way I do anything. While I am someone who will lean into change, this one is decimating my former self. And while I like to envision myself as a phoenix, rising from the ashes, I would prefer not to lose every aspect of myself.
This is, of course, not the first time. I have gone through many transitions in my short little life. Most of which were unexpected, like most things.
Sometimes, though, they were due to my own selfish actions.
Long before I realized I was not built for monogamy, I was a cheater. I found myself in precarious situations often and ended up acting on impulses that didn’t represent how I felt. Yet I did it anyway. As a result I hurt my husband countless times. But he would always stay with me.
There was one point in our lives where we had just grown apart emotionally. Why, I don’t know. I think he was working out of town or he was just sick of my bullshit. (I sure was.) So, we decided to “break up” for a little while so I could work on myself. Is that what happened? Not at all. We continued to share bills, a bed, and a life together. At the time I didn’t know that what we had created was an “open relationship” without calling it that. We were so hung up on “labels” and what they reflected onto us that we would rather be “broken up” than be stereotypical gay men.
As we have seen from past posts, I don’t do life “alone.” I immediately found myself with someone new. (And as did he, for the record.) This song is connected to one of the strangest and most beautiful times of my life.
It’s mind-bending that this happened 14 years ago. It feels as if it was yesterday. I still remember my husband and I going to see “Capote” with Philip Seymour Hoffman and the box office clerk who gave us our tickets was so gorgeous. It’s strange how taken I was, and when I found him on Myspace (yes, myspace) it didn’t even occur to me that these two men were the same person.
It was Aaron.
Aaron was my shadow self. We held so many shared experiences: raised deeply religious, only children, and born to women in their 40’s, and both recently out of long term relationships. However while I had parted from the church some time ago, he was doubling down and fully intended on becoming an Episcopal priest even being a homosexual.
At the time he worked for United Artists and one of our first dates was to see the movie Mamma Mia. Afterwards, I fell in love with the song “honey, honey.”. Every time I heard it, it made me think of him. So, I dubbed him “honey, honey.”
I have this weird quirk where I designate a nickname to someone. If you are lucky enough to receive one that means I really like you. (My husband is “punkin” and Josh is “sunshine.”)
For the longest time I hung onto this relationship, even though I was the one that let it go. Regardless of this fact I would continue to check in on and virtually stalk him. What I have realized now is that what I did was cruel. I should have left him alone. I think it made the act of getting over me more difficult, because just when he may have moved on I would pop in with a text or a vague Xanga entry.
Aaron is the only person I have ever felt like I knew in a previous life. Being in his presence felt so familiar. Inexplicably comfortable. It was like we had done this all once before.
I find this entry difficult to write, because for a very brief moment I debated leaving Charlie and going with Aaron. And in that, I feel so much guilt and shame. What if I had and I wasn’t here to care for him? Who would have done it? What would have happened?
I also feel terrible because he told me he was falling in love with me and I could not say it back. In that moment I didn’t feel the same. Even now, when I ruminate over this exchange and how I felt over the entire relationship I felt something of love, but not a romantic one. But at the same time, I did. Maybe I just never allowed myself to really feel it and risk losing Charlie.
Despite that deeply rooted guilt, I do look back on the relationship with deep fondness and joy. Aaron became the ultimate muse. I wrote our brief relationship into my first finished novel length work of fiction. In it I got to tell the cute wonderful moments that burned like hot coals, only to have me ruin them by ending it. Even in the narrative I got to make myself the villain.
One day I hope to polish this bitch up and share it with the world. Share Aaron/Oren with the world.