My boyfriend is going to be gone for 9 days, he leaves tomorrow.
This is something I’ve always had trouble with, for a number of reasons. I guess I may as well just lay them out for you,
- Things become skewed when I am alone, particularly at night. Corey is an incredibly grounding individual, and he usually gets home from work right around the time I start to get a little antsy. Unfortunately, his calming presence is something I’ve come to rely on at times, so I tend to get a little haywire without him.
- My ex was constantly running out the door at the drop of a hat to have adventures he told me I couldn’t be part of because I was a girl. It’s even more complicated than that, the sort of torture those actions provided me, and it is genuinely difficult to trust anyone in a relationship after someone previous has cheated on you (even if they’re entirely different people). I’ve made good headway in this department, but when Corey is out of town it brings me back, even if just for an instant, to a place and a feeling I never want to re-live again.
- It is a lot of responsibility. Let’s face it, I’ve gotten lazy, because I’ve reached the point where I’m used to only completing about 50% of the household tasks. He does the rest! Without him I’ve miraculously inherited the entire apartment, and everything from preparing the meals to walking the dog is suddenly my sole responsibility. That is a lot of pressure for someone who is otherwise terrible at being under pressure.
To be fair, there are a lot of great reasons why he should go out of town, which totally trumps any wussiness I have about it. He’s an extremely talented person and I try whenever possible to encourage working on projects that mean something to him, and I work very hard to try and make sure my particular maladies don’t get in the way of his dreams and opportunities.
He has become increasingly familiar with my patterns over the last four years and over the last year his grasp on what it means for me to be bipolar has really tightened, especially after my fairly-recent hospitalization.
That said, when he walked in the door last night he froze dead in his tracks and said,
“I’m a little worried that you’re listening to System of a Down right now…”
I laughed, it wasn’t what he thought.
Let’s back things up.
Every year around the end of December since 2006 I’ve compiled a mix cd that relates to the goings-on of the year that is being completed. I didn’t realize it when I started doing this that what I’ve made is a musical mood-chart time capsule.
Listening to 2007, for instance, brings me right back to graduating college and the wild ride that came after, and I’m transported back to how I felt at that time.
These songs can represent moods, seasons, events, moments, the overall feeling of the year, whatever you want it to be. I would highly recommend it, if for no other reason than to be amused by having musical mood charts.
Anyway, I’m a little late this year getting 2011 off the ground. I’ve collected most of the music, I just haven’t figured out the order. I have chosen to include one song on the mix by System of a Down.
If you aren’t familiar with them, SOAD is a little unique because of some of the political messages they put in their music, but there’s screaming and yelling and singing, they’re a little loud and intense. When I was in my middle teens somebody turned me on to “Toxicity” and “Steal This Album!” and I was smitten, they were unlike anything I’d ever heard before (note, I grew up on an island) and all of that fun screaming really seemed to jive with the overwhelming teenage angst that was running around slapping bipolar disorder in the face trying to get its attention.
I remember when I went to the hospital the very first time I had left my stereo alarm clock on by mistake, and at 6am every morning my mom had to listen to “Chic ‘N’ ‘Stu” (a song about pizza toppings) shaking the house because she couldn’t figure out how to turn the alarm off.
Needless to say, this music was very much a part of me when I was younger. It helped usher in the beginning of something, namely the era of, “maybe I’ll just do whatever the hell I want.”
I have a SOAD patch on my jacket (I put it there when I was 17) but we’ve definitely drifted apart. I’m not a huge fan of the band’s later work, but I always regretted not getting a chance to see them in concert.
In 2011 though, I had that chance though a total random fluke. Someone I don’t even know very well was giving away a ticket, and somehow it was given to me.
Now, I’m sure the concert I saw doesn’t compare to the shows they put on 10 years ago, but it was a good reminder of the journey I’ve taken. Almost like a bookend, it felt like closure.
That is why I was listening to System of a Down last night. I put one song on my 2011 mix to commemorate the moment, and the feeling of peace it gave me. Of course, as it played in the apartment my feelings of peace looked suspiciously like intense anger and sorrow directed at “the man” so I can imagine what kind of mental and emotional upheaval Corey thought was taking place.
Thus the beauty of the annual mix. Everything on it will be interpreted by others much differently than how it is interpreted by individual that made it.
So, in a brief conclusion, yes, Corey is leaving tomorrow and I am nervous, but I guess I’m not quite as nervous as I have been in the past. Even if I appear nervous at this point, I’m channeling an inner peace that I can ride until he returns.
Pepperonis and green peppers, mushrooms, olives, chives.