Saturday, August 09, 2008


This little line from James Taylor's Line 'em Up has been coming into my head today (with melody):

Nobody knows me--Nobody Understands.

Here's the video.

It's a song that captures how I'm feeling lately. This verse really nails it.

At that time my heart was all broke
I looked like ashes and smelled like smoke
And I turned away from my loving kind
Try to leave my body and live in my mind
But it's much too much emotion
To hold it in your hand
They've got waves out on the ocean
They're gonna wear away the land

I'm feeling in some way ... lonelier than I ever remember feeling. The way this presents is that I'm driving along in my car, feeling that feeling, and I think, "Self, you should call somebody on the cell phone". And then I try to think of who to call, and there's nobody to call. I mean there's a *lot* of names and numbers in my context list, but thinking of calling any of them produces zero anticipation of cessation of the feeling I'm feeling, to any degree.

It's a sort of ... disconnected feeling. There's also this relatively new sensation (at least having it to this degree is newish) that there's no one out there with more power than me who will take steps to make sure that things turn out well for me and for those I love. I think there's a new sense of separation from my dad having that role. Maybe it's fairly pathetic to say so, since I'm 33 years old and married with children, but up until recently there was a least a sort of ... some kind of bottom line thing in the back of my head that said "Don't worry, if things really fall apart, Dad will help with at least good advice, and probably some sort of actual tangible help as well." It springs from the fact that he seems *so* enormously vulnerable and alone now that my mom has died, and I have the sense that he needs *my* help rather than vice versa. This sort of gives the lie to the idea that finding some people needier than me and helping them will help me cope with this whole feeling, since knowing that about my dad doesn't seem to help at all.

I suspect that this touches on the emotional heart of what people mean when they say God is dead. The world is not safe, nor good--very very bad things happen to people all the time, and up until now I've been convinced I'll probably be mostly spared, somehow. But just lately, that feeling is more gone than ever.


brooke said...

oh ben (or do you prefer benjamin? i keep using benjamin but i just don't know) - i am sorry you are feeling this way. i know - it's not my fault, but - it's just a sucky way to feel and i know i'm just a friend from the internets, but i wish, i so wish, i could change it for you.

Fishpimp said...

There's a lot of good things going on also - like me buying you a beer at some point in the near future.

Joe said...

I'm not sure I can help much, but you can contact me anytime B.

Jena said...

ah yes, i know exactly what feeling you are talking about! at least for me, and i think it is probably similar for was this type of identity for the past four years and i was pretty sure it was taking me somewhere. but now, i feel more lost than ever. really, i have so much to be thankful for but it can still feel lonely in the middle of a crowded room...anyway, just wanted to let you know that you are not alone!

brooke said...

hey -
i just wanted you to know i've thought a lot about you this week. why? actually for very selfish reasons. this week has just bit the big one and i've been just dragging through it all. then i had a counseling session that just scrubbed at those wounds (i think it's supposed to). and because you are willing to talk about it i haven't felt as alone in the midst of the crap as i could have. thank you.

Megs said...

dear lonely Bens,
I love you...
Preciosito Benjamincito
You are so good at expressing feelings and thoughts in words.