Sunday, May 01, 2005

Stray dogs and dark alleys

Today was such a hard day. I spent it largely in the company of people. But I didn’t say much. I watched people talking. I watched people smiling and laughing. It was like I was watching TV with the sound on mute. It was like I was watching myself amidst all the color and movement, and I couldn’t quite communicate with the person that looked like me standing there, all alone, like a barren island in the middle of a great big ocean.

There seemed to be like a dance that people do. Secret handshakes and all that, and somehow, I’d missed out on the steps. Somehow I wasn’t in on the great big joke. So I wasn’t laughing. Sometimes I just felt so stupid. But most of the time I just felt lost and bereft.

Driving home tonight, I wanted to crash my car. I wanted to do something impulsive because I felt so confused, so lost, so alone. I wanted to do something, anything that would take away all those feelings. I didn’t want to come home alone to a dark empty apartment. In the past, I probably would have done something. It would have been a knee jerk reaction.

But I’m so much more careful now. In thinking through my actions.

How do I even begin to explain this? I don’t know if I could.

Sometimes stray dogs just never find their place. You’d think I’d be so happy to have been at the dog show for the day, and to come home now to the cold dark alley with all the happy memories of blue ribbons and best of show. But all it does, is make this place colder and darker than I remembered it. All it does, is make me realize how other people live, and how other people are, and how different, how set apart I am.

There is a reason why some dogs are strays. There is a reason why they never find their way home.

It’s because they don’t have one.

8 comments:

The Mass Defective said...

That's a great analogy...the stray dog. I often feel that way and I know I have family. Yet I still feel so different, so disconnected from them and everyone else that I do feel alone.

The times when I'm in my intelligent, sane mind (which is rare), I try to tell myself that everyone is a stray dog at some point. Everyone is lost and looking for a safe haven, people to connect with. It just takes some of us longer to find it. Some find it and end up getting lost again. Until something more secure comes along, feel free to hang out in the pound with this stray, I'm usually around.

I'm glad you didn't crash your car or do anything else impulsive. I'm glad you thought things thru. That's a step in the right direction. We both did good in not giving in to our impulses this weekend.

Jennynyc said...

It's a good thing you didn't crash your car. You seem like a unique person who I would miss. I live in nyc now so I got rid of my car, but when I lived in Ohio I used to think of crashing it. I have an anxiety about driving that relates to it, I think.

"I have a license but too much hostility" -Woody Allen in Annie Hall, on why he doesn't have a car

butterflies said...

The reason I never crashed my car was because I was more afraid to end up a parapalegic and have to face life in a wheelchair being dependent on others....
Thats not a good buzz.
Im glad you got through it all Hon.

Anonymous said...

Yea,you could end up with severe brain damage or in a coma or something.
Think about what you have,like your physical health,your athletic abilitys,and your intelligence.You dont want to lose those abilitys do ya.
Billy

EJ said...

I'm going through the same thing right now Polar. I can't seem to shake it no matter what I do. All I want to do is disappear. I dont' have much for family, my daughter and my parents (my parents are not dependable) and only a few friends. The lonliness feels like a huge weight I just can't get out from under.

I'm trying my best to stick it out too.

borderline savvy said...

You are a remarkable person. Here you were having a terrible day, and yet you had the compassion to help keep me from cutting last night. Like I've said, you're my favorite Bear! Look what good you did, how generous you were, when you were feeling like crashing your car.

I feel like a stray dog, too. I know that feeling of standing in the middle of everyone and not feeling a part of it at all. I keep thinking that I ought to do something, talk to someone, strike up a conversation, be friendly. But something always holds me back. I'm isolated in my apartment and rarely get out. I am a recluse. And that isn't helping my support system, which is very fragile: Just my son, my friend J., my mom and my sister. That's a pretty small circle of friends.

You may be right about not having a home. Especially with all the traveling you've done, I can imagine that it feels that way. I don't really feel that I have a home either, though Denver is as close to it as I can come.

Thank you, Polar Bear, for being there for me when you needed me to be there for you, too. I wish you had mentioned it. But as it is, you are a dear and saved me from cutting. I would hate to see any harm come to you. You mean a lot to me.

xxan said...

Hello Polar,
Long time, no hear ! It is my fault. I explained it in my post. Polar, it must make you feel warm inside to see how many people are caring about you and are fond of you. I guess you always have the most comments of all the people I know on Blogger. That is because you are indeed such an intelligent and caring and warm and "profound" person. I know that if you feel depressed or "stray" this might not be enough to really help you. But it can give you some warmth, and maybe a "shelter" to feel at home a little.

I told you a million times, you have such an amazing talent for writing! You write in beautiful metaphores, you write poetically, you write with sensitivity and fluently. (and I have a uni degree in Dutch and English literature, so I know ;-)) You have the talent for writing a book, if you wanted to.

I posted the pictures you asked for :-)

I care a lot for you too ! !

James said...

"I watched people smiling and laughing. It was like I was watching TV with the sound on mute. It was like I was watching myself amidst all the color and movement, and I couldn’t quite communicate with the person that looked like me standing there, all alone, like a barren island in the middle of a great big ocean.

There seemed to be like a dance that people do. Secret handshakes and all that, and somehow, I’d missed out on the steps. Somehow I wasn’t in on the great big joke."

Wow, what a great description. I'm sorry though that you had to go through it. I often feel like I'm watching everyone else from a bubble. The t.v. connection is one i've thought about too. Feeling so alone and seperate while watching the excitement and normalcy through the t.v.

I am a stray dog too sweetie. Stray dogs form little packs so let's all just stick together and help each other cope.

Love ya!!