happy child

The sum­mer started unevent­fully, with a mix of rainy weather and cold nights. I long for after­noons in the bright sun, Lou Reed dur­ing his Velvet Underground years croon­ing to me over small speak­ers, with noth­ing bet­ter to do than wip­ing the con­den­sa­tion off a cold drink. It’s a life that doesn’t seem far away, and yet a life I never imag­ine mak­ing for myself. I always think it’ll just hap­pen some day, that things will fall into place if I can take care of every­thing else.

Friday Night Magic

It’s okay to be OCD about how your cards are orga­nized as long as every­one else is.

Aaron has me over for din­ner every week with Karen and the two kids. It’s a rit­ual he has yet to break, even though he told me he didn’t want it to be a cal­en­dar event when I asked him if we could do some­thing on a reg­u­lar basis1. Every Wednesday he leaves work early to let me in the house, and makes up the time by work­ing longer hours on other days, a sac­ri­fice that means more to me than he’ll ever under­stand, and some­thing I never had to ask him to do. It’s nice to be able to look for­ward to reg­u­lar plans, and some­thing I share only with him that makes me feel like I belong.

About as often are Magic nights with Trolley and Steph, and these invari­ably include some­thing deli­cious for din­ner, when Steph takes the culi­nary arts to a whole new level. They take care of me with food and con­ver­sa­tion and booster packs that they never let me pay for. I’m sure I owe a great deal of my san­ity to them, when Magic was the only thing that took my mind off the fact that every­thing fell apart.

pretty wolf

Nobody fucks Pretty Wolf.

In between are things less fre­quent, but no less impor­tant. Musical projects with Jesse or Seth that give me the kind of goals and pur­pose I’ve been look­ing for. Sessions with Lisa, when we get to share the things we don’t share with any­one else. Hangouts with Tiana to debrief on our ever-changing lives, and to give each other advice or a pair of ears. Dinners with Heather G when I need my dose of opti­mism and adven­tur­ism. Not to men­tion the peo­ple who send me mes­sages of check up on how I’m doing when they can’t be here for me physically.

big dog and two girls

HOW ARE YOU SO BIG

It feels strange to be busy again. To be pro­duc­tive, and social, and to need days off when I’m not even employed.

Not that it’s been an attempt to stay occu­pied; more like mak­ing sure my needs are being met. That I have ful­fill­ing rela­tion­ships that pro­vide me with what I need, involv­ing peo­ple who make me feel hope­ful and worth­while and con­nected and nur­tured and pro­tected and sat­is­fied and accepted and under­stood and val­i­dated and loved and con­fi­dent and safe and in control.

  1. Only because it’s some­thing he wanted to keep casual, where nei­ther per­son felt any pres­sure. []

6 comments

  1. Sure Matt has a ginor­mous dog, but who hasn’t wanted one of their own?

  2. How the hell did you man­age to get to befriend all these good peo­ple! You should be the last per­son to need help from a therapist.You must have done some­thing right. Now you make me feel like I’m the most mis­er­able guy in the world.

    • I think being sin­gle con­tributes to the fact that I have so many great friends. I hear that being mar­ried means you lose a friend or two, due to shift­ing pri­or­i­ties, and the fact that a spouse ends up tak­ing a much big­ger role in someone’s life.

  3. I think I need to meet your Uncle.

    • I think you two would get along swimmingly.

      • Neh. She seems to be a real lib­eral, and I’m just a centrist.

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