March 10th, 2003

Roman

starting out badly

My personal web site has been offline all weekend. Today when I go there the message says "your new site is ready", and I can now upload my files. My files are already uploaded there. I received no notification of anything going on there. This really sucks. I wrote a really nasty "help desk ticket" to the web host and I am looking around for equivalent, but more reliable, service elsewhere.

I'm a bit on edge as it is. Not feeling right.
  • Current Mood
    edgy
Roman

confidence

I wear confidence like a perfume at work. I slip it on like a comfortable dress when I dine with close female friends. I don't know where to find it when I am trying to establish a close relationship with a male friend. That is, more than a friendship.

I am good at friendships. In my twenties, I was the group therapist for my little gang of music majors. I was hopelessly attracted to Bob, who was clearly and unalterably gay. It was easy for me to talk to him about problems he was dealing with. As the friend-therapist, I listened, I cared, I sought clues in his words and repeated them back to him. Because there was no way we could ever become lovers, I was "safe" loving him from a distance, pining for what could never be. I liked being valued this way. I did care about him.

Bob wasn't the only one I listened to. My music teacher called me "Biz", the enzymatic cleaner, because I rooted out problems like a laundry additive. He also accused me of falling in love with him, "Uncle Milty", the soulful Jewish 40-something piano teacher to whom our gang was all attached, one way or another. I denied it vehemently, but I knew it was true, or at least that I had some kind of crush on him. It was too embarrassing to acknowledge, that this more-than-chubby, intelligent but moody, gifted but awkward, monster of a student could be any kind of match for this super-teacher. But safe, once again.

For years I was attracted to the unattainable: married and gay men, men who lived ten thousand miles away, men too young or too old. I broke away from this in my early 50s so now I am attracted to a version of the unattainable that is actually more of an indictment of my ability to find love: I find those who idealize women, certain women. At first, gangbusters, I can do no wrong, say nothing wrong. Then the real me emerges and whoa! I'm not who they thought I was. There have been exceptions, of course.

I give Dwain credit for finding me sexy. He also cared for me, loved me, when I was at my very worst, my least sexy, when I was preparing for a sigmoidoscopy and cleaning out my system in the worst way. (I remember that as being the ultimate time in our relationship.) Did I leave that sexual being with him when he walked out of my life? It seems like this is what's missing, what I can't find, what I don't feel comfortable expressing, this sexual self. I feel like part of a person, not all there. I think it has, in part, something to do with seeing. I saw through his eyes, and what I saw was a woman capable of giving herself, capable of surrender. I am that woman, I think she's attractive, and I wonder why I hide her.

The first time I went out with my children's father, I didn't realize it was a "date". I thought we were co-workers having dinner together. I don't think I've changed much. I get clues more often but I am still, first and foremost, a "friend". I know this role. I knew the role I had with Dwain, too, a very different one, but where is it now?

I know it comes down to confidence. Do we need to have the experiences multiple times to build that confidence? I suspect not. I will be asking Jill about this Thursday, in my monthly therapy session, if I remember that long. I will make myself a note.
Roman

Vivaldi's Gloria

I have listened to this piece many many times but this is the first time I've been able to sing it. We worked briefly on the second movement, In Terra Pax, tonight, and it is so compelling...I can't think of another word. Long phrases with sustained notes, slightly-building volume, exactly what I love singing, in a range I feel great in. We worked longer on the Faure, "tuning" the chords. I feel I have a good ear for this stuff, and of course the music is so beautiful. These moments in these rehearsals, and of course in the concerts, they are why I sing. I am lucky lucky lucky.