Wednesday, December 16, 2009

I Am a Rock

Specifically? The philosophical kind, as expressed in these lyrics by Simon and Garfunkel:

I am a rock

A winter's day
In a deep and dark December;
I am alone,
Gazing from my window to the streets below
On a freshly fallen silent shroud of snow.
I am a rock,
I am an island.

I've built walls,
A fortress deep and mighty,
That none may penetrate.
I have no need of friendship; friendship causes pain.
It's laughter and it's loving I disdain.
I am a rock,
I am an island.

Don't talk of love,
Well, I've heard the word before.
It's sleeping in my memory.
I won't disturb the slumber of feelings that have died.
If I never loved I never would have cried.
I am a rock,
I am an island.

I have my books
And my poetry to protect me;
I am shielded in my armor,
Hiding in my room, safe within my womb.
I touch no one and no one touches me.
I am a rock,
I am an island.

And a rock feels no pain;
And an island never cries.

Sound familiar? I have my womb too. My little computer room. A small 10' x 11' enclave in my 1500 sq ft. house in the woods. In addition to my desk and IMac, my womb has a TV and a stereo AM/FM/CD/Cassette player. It's cozy and private, and I'm very comfortable there.

It is a Winter's day, in a deep and dark December, but there is no snow, and unlike years ago, when I lived in the city, I am not gazing through my window to the streets below; but I'm still alone, shielded in my armor, safe within my womb, and I'm still a rock. Maybe not the piece of granite that I once used to be; today, maybe more like sandstone, or pumice, but a rock nevertheless.

My hardening began as a child, with the emotional rejection of my very neurotic, and often extremely cold hearted mother. Thank God she finally discovered Zoloft, but unfortunately for me, not until she was in her eighties! This left me a very needy human being indeed. Not a good way to enter young adulthood. Innocently seeking acceptance wherever I could find it, I more often than not found exploitation, ridicule, or outright rejection. So it was not without a profound sense of euphoria, that I found myself after being discharged from the Army, a 22 year old hippie, being seduced by a curvaceous university art student, that reminded me so much of the zaftig female creatures with flowing waves of hair, that R. Crumb loves to draw, albeit much younger and prettier than the one in the R. Crumb cartoon above.

She was sitting on the sofa in a friends apartment. A place where my friends and I would often go to begin our mescaline trips, while listening to early Pink Floyd (think Ummagumma). This time however I was straight as an arrow. The glow in her hazel eyes, and her bright smile were intoxicating. "I want you to come here, and sit by me!" she said. How could I resist? I was drawn to her like a moth to a flame, and within moments I was hopelessly in her clutches.

I just wannabe be loved! Is that so wruuong?

She wanted sex. I could give her love, but I couldn't give her sex. I didn't know why, at least then I didn't. I could give sex to women I wasn't in love with, with no trouble at all, but not to women I was enthralled by. It wouldn't be until years later, when another disastrous affair with a woman who had seduced me months earlier, ended with a soul crushing rejection on New Years Eve, that I would realize why. She was the most beautiful, and feminine woman I ever laid eyes on. I came home from work one evening, and saw her sitting on the back porch of the apartment below mine. She had just replaced the tenant who moved out. She was another hazel eyed beauty, but nothing like my first love. She was very fair and petite. My first reaction was, she is so beautiful! My second reaction was, I could never have her! So, imagine my state of elation, when she came knocking on my door a few days later to begin her seduction.

I had no choice. I fell for her hook, line and sinker! Our relationship took off, much like the one with the R. Crumb model five years before, but this girl was far more affectionate. I never made out with anyone as much as I did with her, and every time I did, it was more satisfying than any sex I ever had. But apparently not for her. Eventually, she too would pressure me into having sex.

She picked her day to do it. It was on Thanksgiving day. Neither of us had anywhere else to go, so we planned a quiet Thanksgiving dinner together for just the two of us. It was beautiful! We shopped together, prepared and cooked the food together, and that evening we had a beautiful candlelight dinner for two in her apartment. It was without a doubt, the most wonderful day I ever spent with someone in my life. After diner we cuddled, caressed, and shared kisses on the sofa. It was wonderful!

The trouble with all of that cuddling and kissing, is that eventually it lead to her wanting to take me into her bedroom. What was I to do? Destroy the moment and say no? She grabbed me by the hand and led me into her bedroom. I loved being invited in there, but not for the reason she probably expected. For me, entering a girl's bedroom, was like entering the holy of holies. It was a place of reverence, and I felt truly blessed to be invited in. I had been invited into her bedroom on previous occasions, for some of the most wonderful moments I've ever spent in my life. Once, to brush her silky auburn hair, before going out for the evening, and once again, where I would find myself sitting at the foot of her bed. painting her pretty toenails. She loved it, but she had no idea how much more I loved it, than her. For me, that kind of intimacy was far more valuable than copulation, and indeed, when she did finally invited me into her bed after that wonderful Thanksgiving dinner we shared, I felt lost. She wanted so much for me to be her man, but I just couldn't find that man within me. I could feel her disappointment. After two months of courting, she laid herself bare for me. She loved my tenderness and sensitivity, but she wanted some manliness to accompany it, and as much as I wanted to make her happy, I just couldn't muster it.

She didn't understand that, and I couldn't explain it to her. She took it as a rejection of her affection and her womanhood, and her once sweet affection for me, turned into resentment. The old adage that "hell hath no fury, like a woman scorned", was soon brought to life for me. Undeservedly so, but there, nevertheless.

Her rejection of me was absolutely devastating. Much later I would come to realize, that both women were rejecting me, because I could never even hope to be the man they they wanted me to be. I wanted to be their lesbian lover, but how does someone in male form, make love to a woman as a lesbian? How can you even tell them that? Its impossible. I could never reveal to them, my secret desire to be a girl. In those days, and most likely today as well, that would have ensured being instantly dropped like a hot potato. Ha! What difference did it make? They both dropped me like a hot potato anyway. Both of these relationships began to slowly take form in early October. The beginning of the end was evident by Thanksgiving, and shortly after Christmas the coup de grĂ¢ce was delivered, leaving me a broken down hulk of a human being. The second one being even more devastating, than the first.

I could never allow this to happen to me again. I had walls to build to protect myself, and worked furiously to erect them. I became an island unto myself. Never again, would I allow anyone I felt vulnerable to, to ever touch me again. You could talk to me on a casual basis, and we could even go out together, but true intimacy was off limits to all. And that's the way things have remained.

With the exception of family obligations, my monthly support group meetings, and my on-line conversations, I'm still pretty much a cloistered recluse, and I don't think I'll ever be able to change that. I've been doing it for so long, that it seems fixed. What's worse, is that I've gown comfortable with it.

Melissa XX


Leslie Ann said...

This was long my theme song as well, and I still love to play it on my guitar. I think I'm connecting to the world much better now, and I think you are too. You might still be an island, but you've built some bridges to the mainland.

That was a painful story to share, Melissa. I'm glad you got it off your chest. You told it beautifully.

chrissie said...

I see a whole lot of myself in there, too, girl...

Hard to hold up a mirror like that.


Irene Tan said...

I just wanna say "Hi"

caroline said...

I played Ummagumma at half speed which was just as valid since the thing was mixed with so many different speed tapes already, did not need drugs just meditation! With my depressed personality drugs would have been disastrous.

We were longing for the same kind of relationship but I had reasoned from early childhood that I would find it very difficult if not impossible to find a real girl lesbian to fall for me when there were still other real live girl lesbians available!

I to was dumped for being too caring I think, "leaving me a broken down hulk of a human being." Luckily some time after I had decided to give up for ever someone pursued me! Similarly she wanted a "man" but without any of the undesirable male attributes! Lucky for me I was close enough and while she soon gave up hoping for me to take her like a man she never saw any point in a different kind of coupling so we settled for loving companionship which is much more than I had ever allowed myself to hope for.

Guess we have wandered along very similar paths which explains why we click together. I often wonder how many others are out there who have gone through all this thinking themselves the only ones.

Caroline XXX

Sophie said...

Hi Melissa. What a heartfelt entry. I feel for you, the "been there, done that, got the T-shirt" sort of empathy. It is indeed hard to find a partner who craves the type of love and affection we are capable of giving. It seems that initially we are able to fulfill small gaps in their need for affection and that is enough to start a relationship. But when the larger need for a "man" cannot be satisfied it all heads south. I think you phrased it spot on with the idea of a man being in a lesbian relationship with a woman. It is hard, but not impossible. Such women exist, but they are a rare breed.

Nice pic of "the rock", by the way. Gibraltar is definitely on my top ten list of neatest places I have been.

The Boxer
...In the clearing stands a boxer
And a fighter by his trade
And he carries the reminders
Of ev'ry glove that layed him down
Or cut him till he cried out
In his anger and his shame
"I am leaving, I am leaving"
But the fighter still remains

Two Auntees said...

Melissa, thank you for sharing such a personal and open account of you pain. Building emotionally drained walls to keep potential loves away is one way to separate ourselves on the emotional island of our own making; but it's for emotional isolation.

We all need our space and time to be alone, but I think as Melissa becomes more confident with herself she will begin to tear down those wall separating her from experiencing other female companionship. Let Melissa be herself and learn to care for others.

Calie said...

Oh Melissa, sweetie, I so relate to much of that. Your writing brought tears to my eyes. Funny how many of us prefer to be the seducee rather than the seducer.

You are now a very attractive woman and you look much younger than your age. You can be a hot babe in the big city, girl, if you want to be. This "recluse" stuff does not have to be.

Oh, and Melissa, my goal is to look as good as you...a tough one to achieve.

Calie xxx