Dreams and life. Life and dreams. They intertwine to create a mood sometimes and, this weekend, the mood was not the best. This isn't the first time I've written about the after effects of a dream, and it likely won't be the last. Apologies if it becomes tedious, but I ask you to please indulge me.
Some 19 years ago, right around this time of the year, I 'came out' of the closet, to my mother. It had been a long time coming, but what brought it to the fore was that a friendship had just ended. Badly. It had been quite a whirlwind with a classmate in our junior year of high school. His name was Kyle. I guess you could say that I loved him. He was certainly the first person to ever provide the sensation that accompanies being strongly attracted to someone (and by more than just appearance).
I've written about Kyle before, so this won't be a rehash. We were classmates for a school year, and friends for something like four or five months. We packed a lot in to those brief few months. Finally, things ended. It was mostly down to me. He began dating a girl, and I got jealous. A year or two after we stopped hanging out, I contacted him and asked how he was doing, and if he'd ever like to get together sometime? The answer was a brisk and firm, "No." And, that's how we left it.
You might imagine that the person who confirmed my sexuality (via emotion, not sex), and who made such a huge impact upon my developing psyche, has occupied my thoughts from time to time. This he did again on the Friday night of this past weekend. It was a pleasant dream. Kyle & I met up, somehow, and he was pleased to see me. Excited, even. In the dream, he was married with kids. He enthusiastically took me back to his home and introduced me to everyone. We talked. We exchanged phone numbers. He said he wanted to get together again. The dream, you see, was providing a positivity not found in reality.
And then it was over.
Perhaps the strongest aspect of Friday night's dream was the power it had over my mood for the rest of the weekend (and, even, today). It's rather startling that events two decades old can and do evoke such sadness. And that sadness was compounded when, Saturday night, some friends obliviously asked about another friend, Sean, whom things had ended had ended badly with just a couple of months ago. I went through the whole story with them and, unfortunately, that made it weigh on my conscience the next day.
You see, I don't like being a failure with people. And that's how I feel about how things ended up with Kyle and Sean. Was there blame to go around? Possibly. Possibly not. But I was definitely at fault for some of it. And, frankly, it sucks. Yes, we're all human. No, we can't get along with everyone. But, damn it, why not? Why must we encounter folks who end up wanting nothing more to do with us? Why did I allow events to take that course? Why and how did I fail?
There's a scene at the end of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, when Captain Kirk is asked how he's feeling. Kirk smiles and replies, "I feel young." The events of this weekend have made me feel the opposite. I messed up a friendship with someone who meant so much to me and, 19 years later, I'm still aces at the task. The world has changed but Matt, apparently, has not. I feel old. I feel tired. Maybe this will pass. Hopefully.
All I know is, I want to feel young again.