It is no accident that this time of year is a dark and sullen time for people around the world and for everyone it is a time of great endurance. Whether in the grip of the long, dark winters of the northern hemisphere or the scorching, suffocating heat of the African and Australian summer, the celebration around the 25th of December is our solstice. The last two weeks of December is the turning point of the seasons, the worst of the extreme seasons should be now behind us and the light of our respite should reveal its splendor; but we do not rejoice for we have no respite, our struggle is as relentless as ever.

The modern world has transformed what should be our most quiet, most intimate hour and our time of reflection and contemplation into a season of inescapable activity and panic. The rush, the consumption and the expectations all pile onto our backs which have for all the year been yearning for a break. The break never comes as we sit down with hated associates we call family and pretend for a day there is no wrong in the world. We close our doors and our minds to the suffering that occurs outside and in doing so we remain ignorant to the suffering inside our own homes. We put on our masks, exchange gifts as though they were hostages, we feign appreciation for the entire affair and then retire to isolation. This time I find isolation an unfamiliar and unfriendly place.

Historically isolation has been my haven from the infectious world around me and an island from which I can observe without being touched. Despite being surrounded by my closest friends and enduring the venomous encounters that are family I feel a great emotional loss. The feeling is unwarranted, I finally got a mining job (the purpose of my degree) 12 months after graduating and I’m finally leaving home next year but I feel not all is quite right.

I feel an emotion which is rare for myself: longing.

For years I’ve suppressed my sexual feelings to a point of dissociation and for much of this year I’ve felt nothing at all, but this time of year is bringing up all the feelings I usually keep under lock and key. My friends tell me as I often tell myself that my perfect partner in life is someone exactly like myself and such an introverted conviction has been enough for me to usually satisfy myself with scientific outlets. However I ended up watching a lot of The Addams Family to escape the family gatherings and the partnership between Morticia and Gomez always strikes me as one I would strive for myself.

Alas I am a contradiction by profession: a geologist by trade characterised by dirty work in the sunshine, high visibility vests and steel capped boots but at heart a gracile gothic intellectual. I used to cross dress in gothic attire designed for western european aristocrats in a hot, humid rural country in a low socio economic bracket. My behavior and standards belie that of my “community” and my aspirations that same community may find uncomfortable.

I regularly convince myself very quickly that which I look for in a partner is too specific a list to fulfil and I shouldn’t worry about relationships now as I approach to enter a career which will take me far from home on rosters that will rarely coincide with a regular working week. But this night (this 32 degrees celsius night) I feel contrary to that. After a Friday night with my young bogan friends and listening to their attitudes I feel a need to distinguish myself from my peers but what is the biological difference between the pursuit of sex and a lifelong partner (in crime.)

My closest confidante and treasured friend at uni is quick to remind me that I’m not like other men but how can I agree with that without placing upon myself an ego, a self importance in the universe above all others and to say that from my own observations my own actions are more right and just than thou. It feels incorrect to separate myself from others so, it easily allows one to fabricate rules, exclusions and excuses exclusive to them alone. I deny myself that which others indulge freely: alcohol, drugs, cigarettes and casual sex, but that does not make my virtues better or their vices more harmful than my own.

I’m the oddball of my friend groups. My younger friends from high school are all at least 3 years younger than me and in the throes of post high school obsessions and young romances. I’m the youngest of my university friends with many of them significantly older and with a loving partnership which for them has lasted a lifetime. I awkwardly between these groups when it comes to partners, I’ve never been in a relationship and my expectation is that of a stable partnership. One of my younger friends loves to say I was born middle aged, I don’t care what people look like so long as we can discuss how to further explore our universe and how we would overthrow the bourgeois.

This feeling will pass and I will soon be heavily preoccupied with the new job but for now all I needed was to talk.

1 Comment
  1. delane 5 years ago

    Thank you for sharing.
    i really hope you can find that which you are searching for and continue your quest for knowledge…..
    Good luck!!!

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