Soul Glissando

Strength in Pain

It is amazing a quickly a day can go from being good to bad. My day has been just fine. I have thought about her a few times, but I have been actually content with our situation all day. That is, until a few moments ago…

My roommates (and two best friends from high school) just informed they are hanging out with her tonight. This doesn’t make me mad at anyone at all…it just hurts. It unfortunately brings up feelings of both undirected anger and jealousy, as hard as I might try not to let it. And with little time to recover, the universe hit me with a quick second punch, in the form of an email that our bass player has quit and my musical project has disbanded. So, in less than twenty minutes, my day went from an overwhelming positive attitude to a near-insane mental break. It is almost laughable. But, as depressing as that might be, there is really no other option than to keep trucking. I just keep reminding myself that every battle makes me stronger. They say when it rains it pours, right? Well, its true, trust me.

Today’s song is Mumford and Son’s “The Cave.” You can view it by clicking the title. Lyrics follow:

It’s empty in the valley of your heart
The sun, it rises slowly as you walk
Away from all the fears
And all the faults you’ve left behind
The harvest left no food for you to eat
You cannibal, you meat-eater, you see
But I have seen the same
I know the shame in your defeat
But I will hold on hope
And I won’t let you choke
On the noose around your neck
And I’ll find strength in pain
And I will change my ways
I’ll know my name as it’s called again
Cause I have other things to fill my time
You take what is yours and I’ll take mine
Now let me at the truth
Which will refresh my broken mind
So tie me to a post and block my ears
I can see widows and orphans through my tears
I know my call despite my faults
And despite my growing fears
But I will hold on hope
And I won’t let you choke
On the noose around your neck
And I’ll find strength in pain
And I will change my ways
I’ll know my name as it’s called again
So come out of your cave walking on your hands
And see the world hanging upside down
You can understand dependence
When you know the maker’s hand
So make your siren’s call
And sing all you want
I will not hear what you have to say
Cause I need freedom now
And I need to know how
To live my life as it’s meant to be
And I will hold on hope
And I won’t let you choke
On the noose around your neck
And I’ll find strength in pain
And I will change my ways
I’ll know my name as it’s called again

I cannot describe how well the chorus fits my current situation. I know that I will find strength in pain. I know that I have, and will continue, to change. And, ultimately, I hope to know myself again. I hope to know ME. I hope that I will know my name as it’s called again. I really enjoy the line “…I need to know how to live my life as it is meant to be.” A few months ago, I thought living my life with her was what my life was meant to be. I have realized now that I have no idea how to live my life as it is meant to be, mainly because I have no idea what it is meant to be. Hopefully, though, my freedom and my pain will help me find those answers. So, for now, I find strength in pain (and music).

Thanks Marcus Mumford. I needed that one. Until next time…

Being the Bigger Man

Everybody tells me the angry phase will come, and, now that it is, I find myself desperately fighting it. I really do not want to become angry about our situation. I never want to look back at she and I and harbor feelings of disgust or hatred; I love her as much as a sister and a friend as I do a lover and significant other. If someone told me my sister had recently ended a relationship, and, in doing so, became a happier, healthier, more productive person, I would be thrilled. I try to remind myself of this every time I begin to get angry. I try to take my negative feelings and put a positive spin on them. I remember how much joy it brought me to see her smile…and I tell myself it still should. If she is happy, I am happy.

That said, somedays the bitterness and frustration is overwhelming. I sometimes feel that I was completely abandoned, kicked out on my own when I needed her the most. I recently read and uncited quote, and it follows: “Love me when I least deserve it, because thats when I most need it.” By the time our relationship unravelled, we were both completely lost in the world. The only sure thing we had was our love for each other. I still can’t imagine how someone could abandon that. I feel bitter not about her, but about the way she handled things.

I sometimes feel like the good guy that gets walked all over. I stuck with her through so much, and in the end, was left alone. When she and I moved to Seattle, we naturally became completely reliant on each other. We were in a new city with very few friends and minimal knowledge of our new surroundings. So, obviously, we became dependent on each other for our happiness. The city was tough, though, and it took us a few years to start figuring things out. As we entered our second year here, fate intervened.

At the time, I was unemployed and unproductive. If there was ever a time in my life I would consider myself a “loser,” this was it. I was barely looking for jobs, hardly being active, and merely getting by. She was in a similar situation. She had a job she despised and a complete lack of personal direction. But, by some small chance, that would all change.

Through a friend of mine, we heard about a local artists opening a new glass studio and looking for a manager/apprentice. After a couple weeks and a few informal interviews, she had the job. In my opinion, this was the beginning of the end. After just a few weeks, her change had begun. I was so happy to see her get this job and supported her through every moment of it. Hell, it was her dream job; how could I not be happy for her? But as time progressed, the job quickly changed her. Suddenly, I was falling behind. In her eyes, I wasn’t doing enough in my life. She said I wasn’t progressing or that I wasn’t trying hard enough to make something of myself. She often spoke of her “career,” and how I soon needed to start mine. In our personal lives, however, nothing changed. She still came home from work everyday and did nothing. I pushed her so hard to explore her art, both at home as a painter and at work as a glassblower. I even took an extra room in our house and built her an art studio, complete with drafting table and every necessary supply. Still, though, she did not. I tried to pursue my musical interests, even joined a band, but often felt I was leaving her out by doing so. Ultimately, I would stop playing guitar or studying music to be with her. It was a sacrifice I was more than willing to make.

This is why I am sometimes bitter. When she split up with me, her overall reasoning was that she was unhappy with both my and her state in life. She said she was unfulfilled, and  had to start pursuing her work and her art in order to start the turnaround. She also said I was unhappy and unmotivated; that I was content and that bothered her. Its hard to look back at all those nights when I begged her so hard to draw or paint…when I told her how amazing her art was and how she should push herself to create. Its hard not to get upset. I tried so hard to help her blossom, yet, when she decided she was ready to do so, I was merely brushed aside. I know I should have done more. I know that I should have focused on myself and forced her to keep up. I know that I made mistakes too. Still, though, it is a hard pill to swallow. I can’t help feeling a little bit mad when I look back. It is like she got her new job and became to cool for me…and that hurts.

I hope her job can love her and compliment her as much as I did. I hope her job can listen to her problems and offer comfort and advice. I hope her job can run to her every time she has a problem and needs help. I hope her job can do all the things I did, because in the long run, she replaced me with her job. Good luck with that. I, definitely, never thought she would take it this far.

Kanye West “Flashing Lights”

Flashing lights, lights
Flashing lights, lights
Flashing lights, lights
Flashing lights, lights

She don’t believe in shootin’ stars,
but she believe in shoes & cars
Wood floors in the new apartment,
couture from the store’s department
You more like L’eau de Stardee shit,
I’m more of the, trips to Florida
Order the h’orderves, views of the Water
Straight from the page of your favorite author
And the weather so breezy,
man why can’t life always be this easy
She in the mirror dancing so sleazy,
I get a call like where are you Yeezy
Try to hit you with a ‘Oeur de Whopee’
Till I get flashed by the paparazzi
Damn, these nigga’s got me,
I hate these nigga’s more than the Nazis

As I recall, I know you love to show off
But I never thought that you would take it this far
What do I know? Flashing lights, lights
What do I know? Flashing lights, lights

I know it’s been a while,
Sweetheart, we hard-ly talk, I was doing my thing
I know I was foul bay-bay,
a-bay late-ly you been all on my brain,
And if somebody would’ve told me a month ago
Fronting though, yo I wouldn’t wanna know
If somebody would’ve told me a year ago
it’d go, get this difficult
Feeling like Katrina with no fema
Like Martin with no Gina
Like a flight with no visa
First class with the seat back I still see ya
In my past, you on the other side of the glass
Of my memory’s museum,
I’m just saying, Hey Mona Lisa,
come home you know you can’t Rome without Caesar

As I recall, I know you love to show off
But I never thought that you would take it this far
What do I know? Flashing lights, lights
What do I know? Flashing lights, lights

As you recall, you know I love to show off
But you never thought that I would take it this far
What do you know? Flashing lights, lights
What do you know? Flashing lights, lights

The second verse of this song is what strikes me. “Feeling like Katrina with no FEMA.” That is how I feel I was abandoned. I was in a dark, lost time in my life and the relief I needed most was nowhere to be found. I was left alone to figure it all out own my own, and that sucked. It is what it is though, and nothing will change that.

So, here I am, trying everyday to stay positive about our past. I don’t want to hate her. I don’t want to be bitter. I want to take every emotion I feel and channel it into a poistive forward motion in my life. I love and miss her, still, and do not wish to be in this stage of my healing process. For now, I spend everyday trying to be the bigger man, and I think I am doing a pretty good job. Wish me luck…

Tough times…

I’m  going to be honest. It’s been a tough year. That said, good times have definitely been had. Everyday there are both great moments and horrible moments. I heard an inspiring quote today, though, from the most unlikely of sources, but I’ll get to that at the end. 

Overall, my outlook is positive. Nothing bad can come from my current situation. In the long run, there are two potential outcomes. First outcome: A year from now I am a more mature, more experienced man. Character grows from adversity, and I have no doubt that I will be a stronger person because of my struggles. I will also be independent and more comfortable by myself. When I find true happiness again, I know it will be a result of hard work and determination, not complacency. Second, and more unlikely, outcome: My ex and I are back together, but this time with our own established lives in this city. Both happier and more confident people. Win-Win, right?

That said, the days are still tough. I find solace in my faith that what others say is true. Everyone tells me, “It will just take time…you’ll be better off,” or, “Just wait. One day you will look back and be happy about this.” I also find strength in my sister’s situation. Without a brutal breakup from what she once thought was her true love, she would not be so happy now. That brutal twist of fate has led to her meeting a much better man who both knows her and loves her more genuinely than the former ever could. It is not my hope nor desire at this time to meet someone new, though. I am neither needing nor seeking love. Right now, the idea of someone coming into my life that gives me the same feelings I had seems unrealistic. Everyone, however, feels this way after a breakup, and I have seen how their stories ended: happily.

I hope what other say is true. I hope there is a day that everything clicks in my head. It is by far the most frustrating struggle I have ever had in my life.

The logical side of my brain is content with my situation. I logically understand that I am better off now. This year I have had to force myself to find happiness in the most unlikely of areas. I have lost insane amounts of weight, joined a productive local band, rented a practice space to explore my musical interests, revamped my love for seeing live music, and, most importantly, grown closer to my friends and my family. One could already say this breakup has been one of the best things that has ever happened to me. Sadly enough, the only person I have trouble convincing of that is myself.

Then there is the emotional side of my brain. Obviously, my emotions are much more uncontrollable. I wish so badly that I could turn a key and snap everything in my brain into place. I have accepted that I will never be with her again. If by some chance we did end up together again, I still must heal completely first. Either way, this is a process I must complete. It is frustrating that I can’t get over it, but I know I can’t beat myself up about that.

So that is my current state: I am truly ready to be over this. I am extremly frustrated that my past is holding my mind hostage. Everyday, however, I move closer and closer to my goal. Even the bad days are giant steps in the process. Everytime I get mad, everytime I get sad, and everytime I get lonely, I know I come out a stronger person. Now back to the quote, from the wisdom of Coach Mike Ditka.

"Tough times don’t last. Tough people do."

Thanks Coach. I needed that one.

Today’s song needs little explanation. I love the symbolism Paul Simon uses when talking about Graceland, both a specific place, home of Elvis Presley, and a symbolic land of of grace and redemption. “Losing love is like a window in your heart. Everybody sees your blown apart,” but hopefully I too will soon be heading to “Graceland.” Until next time…

  • The Mississippi Delta was shining
    Like a National guitar
    I am following the river
    Down the highway
    Through the cradle of the civil war

    I’m going to Graceland
    In Memphis Tennessee
    I’m going to Graceland
    Poorboys and Pilgrims with families
    And we are going to Graceland
    My traveling companion is nine years old
    He is the child of my first marriage
    But I’ve reason to believe
    We both will be received
    In Graceland

    She comes back to tell me she’s gone
    As if I didn’t know that
    As if I didn’t know my own bed
    As if I’d never noticed
    The way she brushed her hair from her forehead
    And she said losing love
    Is like a window in your heart
    Everybody sees you’re blown apart
    Everybody sees the wind blow

    I’m going to Graceland
    Memphis Tennessee
    I’m going to Graceland
    Poorboys and Pilgrims with families
    And we are going to Graceland

    And my traveling companions
    Are ghosts and empty sockets
    I’m looking at ghosts and empties
    But I’ve reason to believe
    We all will be received
    In Graceland

    There is a girl in New York City
    Who calls herself the human trampoline
    And sometimes when I’m falling, flying
    Or tumbling in turmoil I say
    Oh, so this is what she means
    She means we’re bouncing into Graceland
    And I see losing love
    Is like a window in your heart
    Everybody sees you’re blown apart
    Everybody sees the wind blow

    In Graceland, in Graceland
    I’m going to Graceland
    For reasons I cannot explain
    There’s some part of me wants to see
    And I may be obliged to defend
    Every love, every ending
    Or maybe there’s no obligations now
    Maybe I’ve a reason to believe
    We all will be received
    In Graceland


It really upsets me. The idea that she can go out and have that much fun. The idea that she has completely moved on…and I am no longer a thought. Sure, from the outside, I guess someone could feel the same way about me. I have had lots of party nights since we split up. But, the whole time, I have a felt a longing for her…wishing she was there, wishing I were still in the past. I desperately wonder if she feels the same way. Does she still think about me? Does she still care? Or can she honestly go through her daily routine without a thought of what we had? Maybe she can…I do know she is way busier than me. Between her work, her (formerly our) dog, and her newfound joy of artwork, she might not even have time to dwell on the past. It makes me jealous. I wish I were that busy. I wish I had discovered a new group of creative, interesting friends like she had. I wish I had found that one new best friend that I could do everything with. It frustrates me to no end. She says she loves me, but sometimes I wonder what that means now. I know she cares about me, but love is a difficult word. I personally could never abondon someone I love, no matter the sacrifices or troubles involved in doing so. But, maybe that is the difference between she and I. Part of me thinks that what she did was incredibly brave and mature. Part of me feels that what she did was greedy and unrealistic. Either way, she is happier now and finding her way back into her hobbies that bring her true joy. She is thriving artistically and she looks more beautiful than I have ever seen her look. And there is no part of me that is mad about that. I wish I had a second chance…I wish things would change…but at the same time, for her sake, I don’t. The selfless part of me that genuinely loves her is truly excited for her progress…its amazing to see someone you love flourish, no matter the pain it might cause.

So today I post yet another Tom Petty song. I don’t know why these songs have felt so relevant through this entire ordeal. I honestly rarely even listen to Tom Petty. I guess these songs, though, make me feel at home. I can remember being 7 or 8 years old and riding around with my old man listening to this album. The words ring true still, and have for as long as I can remember. Today’s song is dedicated to her. I hope she is as happy as I am lost. When I listen to the song’s lyrics, I see images of her. Its as if the song was written with her in mind. I especially enjoy the line, “Run away, let your heart be your guide.” Godspeed, love.

You belong among the wildflowers
You belong in a boat out at sea
Sail away, kill off the hours
You belong somewhere you feel free

Run away, find you a lover
Go away somewhere bright and new
I have seen no other
Who compares with you

You belong among the wildflowers
You belong in a boat out at sea
You belong with your love on your arm
You belong somewhere you feel free

Run away, go find a lover
Run away, let your heart be your guide
You deserve the deepest of cover
You belong in that home by and by

You belong among the wildflowers
You belong somewhere close to me
Far away from your trouble and worry

Time To Move On…

So, here I am. 25, single, and completely lost in the world. My goal in creating this blog is personal gratification and progress. I hope whoever reads this can get some sense of enjoyment, satisfaction, or education out of my writings, but in all honesty, it is not my goal. This blog is about me. This blog is my chance to get things off of my chest, my opportunity to explain my feelings, my thoughts, and my daily struggle through the vast mystery of life.

Throughout this blog, I will focus on music: my drug, my crutch, my life. Every small step in life, every emotion can be explained and rationalized through music. Without music, I am a shell of a person. Music is my substance.

Now for the background! May 2008: I was on top of the world. Physically in-shape and mentally sharp, I was ready for anything the world could throw my way. I had just graduated from the University of Montana with a B.S. in Resource Conservation. I had been dating the girl of my dreams for two months now…we actually had met on Feb. 14th and quickly started a relationship. I was making daily positive changes in my life. I had two months left in Montana before I moved to Seattle to live with two of my best freinds from high school. Life was amazing. I had my closest friends, the love of my life, and an entirely new city to take over. Nothing was going to stop me.

But here I am now. March of 2011…recently single, alone, and tired of a city that I feel has left me bruised and battered. I am not quite sure what has happened over the last three years. Hence the blog…I see this as an oppurtunity to better understand the mistakes I have made. Through writing, I can begin to create a true understanding of my circumstances. What got me here? What happened to me? What ruined my love? And most importantly, how do I regain my sense of personality? Hopefully, through daily writings, things will start to make sense.

My first posts will be simply explaining how I feel now. On optimistic days, I feel like the first song, Tom Petty’s “Time to Move On.” It is time to move on…my life is what it is now, and there is no changing that. Things are not going to snap back to prior times. Love is not going to stroll back into my life overnight. It is time for me to move past the past, and look towards the future. Change is inevitable, though sometimes we wish differently. The only person that can curve this change in a positive direction is me, and I strive everyday to make things work. Love, however, can leave an intense hole in your heart and a draining mystery in your head. Losing love is sometimes an all-consuming event, but I must continue to fight through. This song makes me smile and makes me realise that positivity and change go hand-in-hand…and it is time to make both happen.

  • "It’s time to move on, time to get going
    What lies ahead, I have no way of knowing
    But under my feet, baby, grass is growing
    It’s time to move on, it’s time to get going

    Broken skyline, movin’ through the airport
    She’s an honest defector
    Conscientious objector
    Now her own protector

    Broken skyline, which way to love land
    Which way to something better
    Which way to forgiveness
    Which way do I go

    Time to move on, time to get going
    What lies ahead, I have no way of knowing
    But under my feet, baby, grass is growing
    It’s time to move on, it’s time to get going

    Sometime later, getting the words wrong
    Wasting the meaning and losing the rhyme
    Nauseous adrenaline
    Like breakin’ up a dogfight
    Like a deer in the headlights
    Frozen in real time
    I’m losing my mind

    It’s time to move on, time to get going
    What lies ahead, I have no way of knowing
    But under my feet, baby, grass is growing
    It’s time to move on, it’s time to get going”

I couldn’t have said it better. The chorus line “But under my feet, baby, grass is growing” really hits home. I feel like the world has been moving around me for years now. Other people change and move forward, while I stand still. For too long now, I have sat and waited, letting the grass grow around me, until its almost overtaken me. “Frozen in real time, I’m losing my mind.” But, as we are told, its “time to move on.” Life can no longer take a backseat. From below, the battle seems almost too daunting. Between my longing for the past, and loathing of the present, the future seems bleak. But, I must remember, that life is not static, it is a dynamic flow from day number one. One cannot move forward in life without change. As painful as it is to contemplate life without the vices of my past, I have to realise that sometimes the past is simply unavailable. Sometimes circumstances make you change, whether you want to or not. Our life is not always our life, especially when we allow someone so deeply into our life. More of my story will be revealed, and I will open up more as to the situations that led me to where I am today. But, for now, this is my state. I am lost, scared, and confused, but hopeful of a better tomorrow and ready (I think) for change. Until next time…