I found a book of photography called Chaos by Josef Koudelka at my house in Malibu that Kristian gave me for my birthday some years ago. In it he wrote:
“I thought this book was very apt. Life is never black and white yet always flowing with chaos. I feel this book goes some small way to prove that even in chaos there is beauty.”
It was lovely to find his note. A message from Kristian, from the past. The past, where we must leave him.
I had to make some huge and grown up decisions today. Decisions and about romance and finance. The two are unconnected yet have been hideously intertwined as I grappled with one or the other for the past few months.
As my fear of financial ruin overwhelmed me I turned to him to deliver me from the truth. Today, I just had to face my unfortunate situation head on.
My financial insecurity is undoubtedly connected to uncomfortable feelings of self-worth, prestige and power. The romance I want but cannot have. Some things are just not meant to be. It is challenging to come to terms with these sorts of truths but as I have written here in this blog on many occasions when I do make decisions they are swift and sure. Something, actually, Drew Pinsky taught me whilst I was on the sex rehab show.
I have deliberately avoided talking about either the romance or the finance on this blog but more importantly I have kept it secret to those who love me best. Fuck, it is exhausting keeping secrets. I really hate it. I have no intention of going into any specific detail about the romance or the finance right now. All you need to know is that I sat with John after the cake was cut and the presents were opened and told him everything I had been hiding for the past few months. Phew.
As we all know: the truth will set you free.
I let go of a secret I was determined to keep. Everything I have ever let go of has been relinquished unwillingly. With claw marks all over what ever was finally gone.
Deep down I am as sure as I ever was that everything will turn out just the way it was meant to be. I believe in my fate.
My relationships burn like super novae in the cosmos then shrink and die. I have an opportunity right now to make a different set of choices: taking contrary action, living in acceptance and handing over what ever gives me pain to my higher power.
Just a few days away from my trip to Europe where I will celebrate a hefty milestone. I have chosen to travel with a close friend. Someone I love but not a lover. We (and The Little Dog) will explore London and Paris. For the sake of The Little Dog we will once again visit the wallabies in the Jardin des Plantes that my darling, loyal pet found utterly spell binding when we visited Paris last Autumn. I am sure he must have thought that they were the biggest squirrels he had ever seen.
Am I prepared to walk away with dignity? From people, places and things?
What I own is not who I am. Who I love cannot define me. Of course I would love to be in love with a man who loved me as much as I loved him.
I have come a very long way this past year. The road to serenity, self-love, sexual sobriety is littered with the corpses of those who could not.
I must have buried 30 people during the last 12 years, killed by addiction. Overdose, suicide, etc. Every one my hero for keeping me sober. Each and every one.
This evening I celebrated my friend’s daughter’s 5th birthday. I sat with his family and watched his happy little girl blow out the candles on her cake. After supper I wandered into Soho House on my own and found people I knew to take my mind off of the grueling aloneness. I am not lonely, I just can’t be bothered to make the effort to accept the invitation nor get in the car and drive to people who genuinely love me.
On my way home, as if by magic, friends called me. Emails arrived, text messages appeared on the screen of the iPhone and I was wrenched away from the promise of a night of self-pity. I can be such a pig at that particular trough.
I said to him the other night that what I found so hard to let go of was the promise of enduring love. The door had been opened then slammed shut. I am the wise uncle, asexual, decrepit yet ultimately willing to be of service to those who need me.
Without the crutches of objectification, intrigue and seduction I can some times flounder. I can sometimes fall. Late at night, when all hope is gone I wonder who will catch me? Who will catch me when I fall?
For a moment back then, I thought it might be you. I thought, foolishly, that it might be YOU. I thought it was you when I was 20, 30, 40 and now. Being in love with Richard in my twenties. I was heartbroken when he would flirt with girls. At my birthday party on Island Wall, Whitstable my Mother saw the pain I was in and tried to reach out to me but shame got in the way.
The legacy of shame.
Love has always been my goal. To be loved. I crave love the way most men crave sex.
I told him: I’m really scared that I will never love again. That I will never be loved. How could I have got this so wrong? To believe that love was possible, enduring and could be one day mine?
From out of the chaos comes beauty. It will give me succour when all else fails. I am going to Europe to fill my heart and soul with art and architecture. To walk the streets and parks of two great cities. To explore what it might have been like to be loved. I know that when I get back he will be gone. It is our swan song, our last hurrah. But before I write the end I must enjoy the journey. I must not fear the future nor have unrealistic expectations, I must set aside my shame and feel the sun on my face, in my heart.