Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Dear Sweet Becca

This is the first strong piece of personal writing that I've done in a while. It's mostly dark in context, but it's got a good ending in there somewhere.

Any longtime readers of this blog know that over the past year I've been troubled on and off with depression. For the most part I've always been an upbeat guy. I'm always sociable, I love meeting new people, and I've never had a problem with just being happy with life.

But after I broke up with Becca (my girlfriend of three years) two years ago, things took a major turn for the worse. I felt like my whole world got turned upside down, and I really felt that without her I couldn't be happy. I was convinced (and still am) that she made my life worth living.

I feel terrible to this day that things turned out the way they did towards the end of our relationship, since it finished off with bouts of yelling and frustration, followed by sorrow and regret. And the main reason that I feel bad is that it's because of the way that we left each other that I never got to make her understand how she really made me feel. There were so many things that she did for me mentally that she helped me out more than she'll ever be able to understand.

My parents were divorced since I was one year old, so my childhood was filled with constant mental battery. The bickering and shit-talking was never muted between my mother and father, no matter if I was standing directly next to them or not. One instance in particular occured when my dad and step-dad almost got in a fist fight right in front of my eyes when I was eight years old on the night of my dad's wedding rehearsal.

After that I didn't look at my step-dad the same for a long time, even though I know now that he helped form me into a great person throughout our years living together. For the most part I was in custody with my mom and him. I lived with them for the majority of my childhood, though I saw my dad on weekends.

On those weekends I would hear over and over how my mom fucked my dad right in the ass, and how if I really loved him I would cry in front of the judge to show how much I really wanted to be with my dad, even though at that point in my life I could never really decide which house I liked best. For the whole weekend I would have a longing to go back to my mom's house. But on Sunday nights, I would get dropped off back at home, and when it was time to go to bed, instead of sleeping I would sit in bed and cry at the fact that I'd have to wait another five days before I got to see him again.

I hated my mom for the fact that her and my step-dad had money and were excellent savers, yet they were such good savers that I never got any money for field trips like the rest of the kids, nor did I get the newest toys or games for Christmas. I wouldn't get the Sega Genesis until two years after it came out, because by that time they could buy one for a quarter of the release price. Same when the Playstation was released.

On the opposite side my dad gave me everything that I wanted, along with some stuff that I didn't. He wanted me to be HIS son so bad that in the brief amount of time that we got to spend together, he pushed me over my mental and emotional limits.

He wanted me to be a bowler since he had spent a small amount of time on the PBA and owned his own bowling proshop for years. I sucked and was seven-years-old so I didn't care enough to get better. That, of course, prompted him to go into hysterical outbursts of yelling, most of the time resulting in me feeling like shit because I couldn't please my father.

After that he wanted me to be in the Cub Scouts. It was fun for a while. It gave me a chance to see my dad on the weekdays, and gave us some father son time on outings on the weekends. But about three-quarters of the way through the first year, in a moment of rage, he unenrolled me because I wanted to skip out on one meeting. That sucked badly.

Then it was onto little league baseball where I played outfield and felt like a failure, because at that point after the years of listening to the disappointment in my father's voice I could only imagine what me sitting in left field picking my ass and staring at the ground made HIM feel like.

That was how the earlier part of my childhood went.

I never really settled down in one town, either. By the time I got to high school I had gone to three different elementary schools (one of them I had gone to twice with a two year break in between attendances), two junior highs, and two different families. I had had a chance to live with my dad for a year after my mom went through some relationship problems with my step-father, and after a year I moved back in with her. And considering that junior high school only consisted of two grades back when I was in it, having two schools under my belt meant one thing: I had no solid friends.

I was able to keep in contact with two friends from my early child years, both of whom I had known since I was three. I still consider one of them my closest friend in life. But being constantly moved around as a child really sucked, because when you're that young being in uncomfortable territory is about the last thing you want to do.

In order to have some sense of belonging, I would try as hard as I could to get a base of friends whenever I moved. If there some who didn't like me, I would do some crazy shit that they couldn't believe I would do so that they would at least be intrigued by me. Of course back then that meant jumping off the top of the tallest slide or launching myself off the swings right in front of the yard duty only seconds after they warned me not to. An in my (somewhat desperate) attempt to make everybody my friend, I made quite a few kids annoyed, a lesson of what-not-to-do's that I learned in my later years as a child.

In any case, in my time I learned how to make friends easily, which is a trait that I'll never be able to ditch. When I got to high school I was finally able to settle in one town for more than three years. At least I had that going for me.

I got a job as soon as I turned 16. My mom and step-dad were on their way to becoming millionaires thanks to their diligent price-cutting living, while my dad had hit the bottom of the spiked pit of financial death, only to be rescued by his new wife. My mom got me a used car, but she'd be damned if she had to spend her money to pay it off. So, off to Taco Bell I went. And to this day, I was the best fucking employee that Taco Bell had ever seen.

In all the years of my upbringing, if there was one thing that my mom and step-dad had taught me, it was that hard work leads to having nice things. And I appreciate that more than they'll ever hear me say it. If they were to read this right now, they should know that while I thought they were hard-asses when I was younger, I understand in full why they did the things that they did. And looking back on it while I'm writing this, I know I describe them in a lot harsher manner than they actually were.

So after dominating the fast food industry, I was able to put my ability to be sociable, along with my strive to work hard, to use when I became a bus boy/waiter over the following few years. That was when I first got my taste of free money. While paying my car off with my paycheck, I then had money from tips to spend on extra shit. It was at this point that I really got my first real taste of independence.

I was finally able to break free from the black clouds that were my two families of divorced parents, and I could go and find stable ground with something, anything. It was a little while after this that I met Becca, who, even though I didn't know it or even have any idea that I was supposed to, was exactly what my life had needed.

I remember the day I met her like it was yesterday. I remember exactly what she was wearing (pink tanktop and a tiny pair of pink and white checkered shorts), and I remember where we were and exactly what we were doing and talking about. I remember exactly what she looked like the first time she smiled at me, and I remember almost every minute of the first night we hung out together.

I knew that I would remember that day forever when it happened, and it was on that day I knew that I was falling in love. And I would end up falling in love with her more than I thought possible. She turned into my everything. She was all I thought about, all I worked for, and all I strived to be a better person for. She was, at that moment, the person I was living my life for.

Of course there was no way that I could've shown her that then (and I tried in vain to explain it to her around the time we broke up three years later, but it's hard to imagine that she truly understood it.)

By that time I had hit the stage of life where you hate your parents and they're "so stupid", and I had to experience it twice as much as anyone else at my age. She was there to calm me down, though. I also started slacking in school, but there she was to make sure I finished strong so I could get into college.

And for the first year of college, she was there for me still. My living situation was hellish, and in turn was having an effect on my freshman year at CSUN. But she was there to boost me up and try (she tried hard) to help me out. And I loved her for it. I loved her to the bottom of my heart.

Unfortunately, it came to an end and I thought I was gonna die. My unwillingness to let her go only made the breakup bitter, and as I slipped away into my own black hole I almost dragged her with me. I'm glad that she was able to get out and do her own thing, cuz I wouldn't ever want her to feel what I felt when I realized that she was gone.

Shortly after we broke up, I moved out to Santa Barbara, desperate to find a way to get her off my mind. And it's here that I've been ever since, trying to do just that. I got a job, a job that turned into a decent job with decent pay, and I'm living in a town that is built on partying and having a good time living on the beach.

Most people would die to be in my position, yet for some reason that I hadn't been able to figure out, I was just so depressed. I put up a good fight for a while, trying to convince myself that I was fine, but the more I did that the more the depression fought back harder.

But something happened the other day that now has me completely high on life. For the first time since I saw Her smile at me years ago, something made me truly happy. And the odd thing about it is that it was Her that's done it to me again.

For some random reason I decided to write her a note online the other day, and last Tuesday night she ended up coming up to dinner and hanging out with me for a little bit. She's going through some of her own personal stuff, and I listened to most of it. And it felt so good.

Being able to see her again......being able to hear her voice and to see her beautiful face once again was something that I didn't think I'd be able to do. And to feel now what it felt like then just to be in her presence, was something that I'd been missing since we fell apart. And after being a mild depressive for the past year, I'm finally feeling happy again, and it's all from one night with her.

I know that both of our lives have moved on, and I'm actually happy for the both of us. We wouldn't get back together, nor would we get close to it. Who knows if we'll ever see each other again. I do know that I still love her to death, and had it not been for the night we had together, I'm not sure I would've snapped out of this deep slump for a long time to come.

I can only hope that one day soon we'll have time to hang out again. If not, I'm completely content with the feeling she's left me with this time around.

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