Rant: #foreverAlone and loneliness

So, in this year (2017),
  • I promised myself that I was not going to crib.
  • I decided that unless I wrote 5000 words in a week, I was not going to have Coke. And in the process get Book2 Publishing-ready. I haven't written shit and yet, as I write this, I am on coke. 
  • I wanted to work on getting over sgMS. This meant creating more opportunities to bump into great women.
  • I wanted to get fit (32" at least, if not 30). Run a half-marathon (if not the full), work towards climbing the Everest. 
  • I wanted to make money (enough to allow me to not work) and work towards that large impact that I wanted to make.
  • I wanted to be the best year of my life. The best version of SG ever. 

And things were all looking up for the first few days of this year. I picked pool, I started with guitar, I started working on the next book. I started reading. I was going for walks often. I was doing so much that I felt like 16 all over again. The way I haven't felt in a long long time. I was, like Red, "... a free man at a start of a long journey whose conclusion is uncertain." I am the beginning of a journey and while I know where I want to be, I dont know how I would go there. Free man (well, almost), long journey (yes), conclusion is uncertain (yes)!

But, then I dont know what struck me. Things have been on a downhill last few days and this weekend I think was the worst so far. This is the week (and weekend) where all went for a toss. The momentum (if there was one) that I had built since the beginning of 2017 is down the drain. I will have to restart all over again. From scratch. 

The weekend sucked like no other. Even though I did EVERYthing that you would expect a 34-year old single man to do on a weekend - played pool (on Sat and on Sun), met a couple of friends (one for work and one for mental masturbation), went on a date (with a really intelligent, funny, easy going, beautiful woman, who seemed to enjoy my company), wrote some, read some (finished third book in 2017 - fiction, Hindi, Ved Prakash Sharma), cleaned a room that's been in mess since I moved, slept, even had Diet Coke (3 at that! Had to break a promise but I had to - I was feeling super shitty about myself).

Now that I've put this on paper, I realize that this is actually FAR more than I've ever packed in a weekend. I must be tired by now (its 8:30 PM on a Sunday) as I write this (note: finishing this at 10:05 AM on Monday). And I am. Honestly I am. And no, its not physical exhaustion. I am tired in my head. There is this load on my head for I don't know what. And I have tried really hard to pin point the cause and I cant seem to find it! And this inability to find the answers is bugging me ever more! 

Thing is, I believe I have a sane head on my shoulders that is capable of thinking and being objective about things. I can reason. I can zoom out and try and understand what is affecting me through different vantage points. And that's what I did. I tried to look at myself from different vantage points and here is the list.

The Shrink
I would've admitted to a doc that I am lonely. I terribly miss having someone around me. Someone who treats me as the centre of her universe. And most importantly, someone who allows me to make her the centre of my universe. And someone who acknowledges it. Gives me confidence that she's with me. And no, its not easy to find someone like that. Lucky are those who have someone like that. Actually luckier are those who dont need someone like that.

Coming back, I was so lonely that I took my rants to twitter (side note: I did get AA to come have a drink Diet Coke with me).
I think I have started to feel the need of having someone around. Age does funny things to people!

So, am I ready for Shaadi? I dont know. I am not sure if I can take on the responsibility just as yet - theres' so many things that I am supposed to do before I "settle" down. And yes, shaadi is settling down. Because you have another person's life attached to you. You have one another family to look after. Agreed your partner looks after you and all that but I think that the idea of two things coming together is to make things stronger, not weaker. Marriage adds variables and infinite amount of complexity and thus it makes the entire thing weaker. How? Here are some scenarios:
  • You want to quit your job and write a book? You can't because you have to feed more mouths. Agreed that the partner could work and you chase your passion (or vice versa). What if partner wants to chase passion as well? It becomes the battle between two passions. 
  • You want to move cities / countries. You cant because you have another career to consider. 
  • Health. You cant seem to manage how fit are you. And here is one more person's health to keep a track of. 
I can go on and on about the added complexity. I am very vocal about making lives simpler and shaadi is an opposite of that! Plus, a shaadi is such an investment of time, energy and don't know what all.

The pragmatic side of me tells me to make an excel sheet (discussed with AA yesterday) and evaluate options on it and then settle down. With someone who has such a huge passion project that I am happy getting a stable naukri. Or with someone who has no passion and I can continue to chase randomness. On the other hand, the die-hard romantic in me wants to wait till cupid strikes. 

And the without-thinking-reacting-acting me wants someone who's... 

In an ideal scenario, I would want to be around someone who has a passion project that is independent of how things are with me.

Do I have someone like that? No.

Do they make someone like that? Am sure they do.

Am I the best person for that person? May be. But I am willing to work on it. All great relationships are about working on them. No?

Anyhow, the shrink will ask me to get married. No discussion on pros or cons or anything like that. Just get married. Simple.

The Career Counsellor
This is a tough one.

Apart from the loneliness, I think the thing that is killing me is the inability to find meaning with work. I know what I want to do (work at the intersection of technology, entertainment and communication, may be sports) - I enjoy what I do. I make enough money to pay my bills. I have enough opportunities to contribute.

But for some reason, I am not happy. It could be the scale of work I do, the money I make, the impact I make, the number of people I reach, the expression, the lives I change, the visibility of what I do, recognition (do I want this? I dont know), inability to hustle, or one of million other things.

May be its the absence of flow? Thing is, when I look back at the times when I have been in the flow, it has happened when I am:
  • creating something - writing, researching, talking about new things
  • talking - to a stranger, addressing a team
  • travelling - while I dont eat more than half the things, I suck at small talk, I love being on the road - it keeps the curious kid in me excited.
With what I do, I think flow is increasingly absent. Probably its natural evolution. I am no longer a creator. And as a manager I am often interrupted and I need to chase things. And flow with that may not happen.

So there is this battle between being a creator and growing up. Its a battle between making money and making impact. In the ideal world, Id do both. But then the world is not ideal. No?

But apart from this, dont think there's anything wrong! The career counsellor will thus tell me to stop ranting and get back to office and deliver that damn presentation that's been pending on my desk for three weeks. 

The Fitness Trainer
He would see someone who's making a serious attempt - within his circumstances. I am going for walks when I can. I am eating in moderation. I am trying to be active. Of course I can do so much more.

The fitness trainer would ask me to buckle and do more. Lot more. And yes I am capable of doing it. Today on!

Realized that I dont have deeper connections that most people have. If I were to die today, I dont know how many will stop what they were upto and attend the funeral. And no, I am not just talking about the funeral but I am talking about things that you need friends for. A shoulder to lean on. The kind of friendship that they talk about in books like The Count of Monte Cristo. The kind of friendship that makes you want to lay your lives for! The kinds that does not allow the vacuum to creep into your life when you're bugged on a weekend.

May be this vacuum adds to my unhappiness?

Or may be I need to embrace solitude? Read Walden's opinion on it.

Also, as an objective thinker, may be I dont have friends cos I dont invest myself in their lives. After all reciprocation works better than most other things na? I am not sure. I dont know.

And this is when I am thinking deeply about relationships. My sis shared something the other day where some scientists have proven that if you want to achieve more and live happy, you have to have happy and deep and meaningful relationships.

I dont have any. May be that's why I am unhappy? I ought to work on this. In fact the key takeaway of this post for me would be to go and attempt to fix my relationships. Of course it will start with an investigation on why I dont have these in the first place. And then go about fixing them.

More eventually.

But, the friends will tell me (as they already do) to stop taking things seriously, remove the burden from head, lower expectations from self and get laid. Lol! What else do you expect from them? :). I love em!

I am forced to put an "all is well." facade. Because I cant tell them that I am not happy. Thing is, I dont know how to tell them that things are not alright. I mean I dont even know what is not right. If I knew, I would fix it. No?

The sad bit is that I have had the most brilliant opportunity to have born in such a supportive family and it sucks to not make them aware. We are in this together. Thats the closest to we that we would ever be. Everything else is me. I. Ego. Ahamkaar. Etc.

But I cant. I dont know what to tell them.

And no, I dont want to hide things either. Thus this blog - helps me pour the heart out. Allow me to feel good about publishing something - if not a piece of fiction, account of shit in my head.

So, if they knew, my family would tell me to do things that make me happy and if there is absence of that spark in life, they'd ask me to come back and take it easy,

Random Bystander on the Internet
To a random bystander on the Internet, I will be a dark, bald, middle-aged man that cribs a lot about problems that are not unique to him. He needs to see a shrink, get treated for depression and top of it all, get laid. And then, get a life.

They would tell me to.. wait. They will not tell me anything. I am not a celeb. And whatever little trolls that I get, I ignore them.

Whoever you are, if you are reading this, tell me what is your evaluation of who I am. My entire life is like an open book. Divided between this blog, my twitter handle, my LinkedIn profile and the Facebook page you have access to everything - what I think of, my opinions and my deepest, darkest thoughts, am ambitions, my fears and everything else that makes a man, man.

The last and probably most important vantage point. Mine. My perspective. On me. As unbiased as it could be.

I dont have to do the evaluation thingy here. I know what I am and who I am. I'd just tell myself to get some patience, buckle up and continue doing what I've been doing. And most importantly, remind myself that this too shall pass.


So, now that I've exhausted these vantage points, am I closer to an answer? Damned I am not.

Do I feel good about who I am and how I spend the day. No I dont.

Is the dopamine going through my blood faster? No!

Do I see meaning in what I do? Who I am? Where I am? No!

Am I little less lonely? No I am not. In fact I think I am so lonesome that I can die. I mean it. There are friends, there's family and there are tons of people around me. But the one that I want to be with, I dont have her around me. I miss her. I crave for her. Or may be its just the thought of her that I sort of miss? May be. May be not.

Ok. enough.

That's it for this post. Do write in if you happen to read this. You know my email address.

Over and out.

P.S.: I am not sure if I am depressed. Over times I've used the term loosely but this time things may be real. Need to see a doc and figure out. Once I am back. 

P.P.S.: Yesterday I was talking to AA and it dawned on me that you dont create impact if you sail with that goal in your mind. The idea is to do things per your understanding and nudge people towards the impact. I think that makes a lot of sense. More on this in the next blogpost. 

P.P.P.S.:  Some months back someone wrote about Urban Poors. NY times has Modern Love (with context largely set in America.). I think I need to write about Modern Love in India - especially for people like me. The ones at the verge of middle-life crisis - old, single, busy with work, ambitious, underachievers. What say? Want in? 

P.P.P.P.S.: Song of the day? Pyasa's Jaane Wo Kaise Log They.

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