The following online journal entries are from April 1999.
They are taken from older version of my website.
Wednesday. 12:10 AM. I'm sitting at my computer late into the night. It's past midnight. And I'm trying to figure out what I want to say. My online journal for April needs to be inaugurated with some sort of statement. I'm a little tired. But, I think I can manage a few lines. I have a feeling this entry will probably be a bit scattered. I'm not sure where my thoughts are going. So I'm going to bump and stumble through the words.
I find myself sighing a lot these days. Just taking really long deep breaths and feeling ill at ease and silently distressed. I still face so much uncertainty and so much unfamiliar territory. My life here in San Francisco is barely out of the starting gate and I'm already finding myself a little stuck and a little lost and a little sad.
I'm glad I'm not sick any more. I hate being sick. I absolutely hate it. It sends me into a real gloom. Perhaps part of my mood is simply leftovers from my bout with the flu last week.
The weekend was relatively uneventful. Spent most of indoors recuperating. The weather was nice on Sunday and Sarah and I walked up to the Castro to attend the 20th anniversary celebration of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, a group of community-serving, costume-wearing drag nuns. It was like a little mini-pride day. There was some consternation about the celebration. The Catholic church did not think the city should allow the event to take place because of Easter. But the show went on. There were a lot of people out and about. It was fun walking around and people watching. It was nice to be outside and in the sun.
My job hunt is going very slowly. I'm not sure what I'm going to end up doing. I really want to find some sort of writing/publishing work. My ideal job would be the publications manager or editor of a small business or non-profit organization -- in charge of their newsletter, magazine, brochures, flyers, and so on. I really hedge going to work for some big corporation. I want something laid back, creative, community-oriented, and people-friendly. I'm not sure if such a job exists and if it will come into my life. I hope the universe will provide. Till then, I'll keep looking and sending out resumes and trying to track down leads and pull some strings.
I think once I find work and make a small circle of friends my life here in SF will fall into place. It's these last couple of pieces that I'm hoping for. I'm not even going to go anywhere near the whole "finding a relationship" arena. That will be another entry down the line.
Homesickness. It's just all homesickness. And it's potent enough to throw me for a loop. Several loops.
I think I'm going to end this entry. Too much on my mind. And the late hour is just making it one big jumble. I'll try again later. Goodnight.
Thursday. 9:09 AM. Well, the infamous Tax Day is only a week away. I finished my taxes last week before the turn of the month. But, I owe money so I'm not going to mail the suckers until the very last minute.
Today is a bit better than yesterday. Though I woke up feeling a little groggy. Sarah and I went out with the Wednesday night happy hour crew -- meaning, Sarah's co-worker Lewis, who is a very nice guy, invited us out to hang with his friends many weeks back. We started going to a little place called the Casanova Lounge, on Valencia (between 16th and 17th). So, whenever the group of people gets together, we try to meet up with them. Last Wednesday, we were supposed to meet them in SoMa at a place called the Thirsty Bear (sounds cool but it's actually a very swanky yuppie bar and restaurant). But, we missed them or they dissed us or something. This week we went to the Metro bar in the Castro. Very young urban gay. We had a few drinks. (I'm not too convinced they're the right crowd for me. But they're nice enough. We're just in very different worlds -- socially, politically, vocationally). Then we went to the Hot n' Hunky -- a burger joint on 18th (near Noe). I ate too many fries. Then we went home. But stopped at the Magic Burgr (yes, it's spelled like that), a 24-hour doughnut joint on the corner near our apartment, and bought doughnuts. I really didn't need that blueberry jelly doughnut at eleven o'clock at night. I drank three drinks but it was plenty. So, today, I'm going to try to do a little cleansing and rehydration.
I do feel better than yesterday. I guess it's just taking a little time for me to work through the feelings in my head and my heart. It's still a little up and down, though. I think I'll achieve an even keel once I find work and make my own group of friends. I've been trying to take care of myself.
Again, life has been very prompt and direct about telling me that I have the answers to my own questions. I had several conversations yesterday with people online and the subject was getting through difficult life spots. I suddenly realized that the advice I was giving could be applied to my own life. One of the best lessons I've learned in my life is that I need to take my own advice. It's really hard. But, if you trust your words to be good for someone else, someone you care about, then why wouldn't they apply to your own life?
I've been concentrating on doing things that I know make me feel better about things.
I continue to work on my room. Yesterday, I took out the huge collection of Go-Cards and Hotstamp cards I had gathered -- they are those postcard advertisements you see on racks in all sorts of places like bars and stores. I really like some of the clever and well designed cards. I put them all up on one section of my wall all in series. I need a few more to round out the collection, but it looks really cool.
I have also started listening to country music again (to the chagrin of Sarah and anyone else I tell). I'm not quite sure why; it's somehow really comforting. But, I've dusted off my Clint Black and Randy Travis and Radney Foster CDs. It's the perfect music to sing with. It makes me feel better. Maybe I'm just a sappy soul and really get into the whole ballad thing. One of the verses in Clint Black's song "A Better Man" really struck me:
I know I'm leavin' here a better man
I think about my life in Maryland a lot. I think about all the things that I used to do and all the places I used to go. I think about all the people I know and all the people I didn't have a chance to hug goodbye. The homesickness is still just as powerful. But I'm realizing how much I've accomplished in the short time that I've been out here. And I know that I left the DC area for a right and true reason. And all of the things that I left behind has made me who I am at this very moment. I am a better man. I just have to remind myself of that every day. It's all about affirmations. It's all about taking the time to recognize the good and positive.
One very unique thing that has happened since I've been here is that I have a bit of fauna living outside of my window. A pair of mourning doves have decided that the little fire escape outside my bedroom window is the perfect place to nest. They've taken over an old clay pot and built a nest inside of it. So, I have a mother dove sitting on her two eggs an arm's length away. She's really sweet but terrified to death of me whenever I check in on her. The location isn't very weatherproof, though. I'm not sure the birds are very bright. It's rained the last couple of nights and she just sits there taking every drop. I'm thinking I might find some sort of shelter to put over the nest. Regardless, it's still an interesting development. I hope the eggs make it and then I can see little dove chicks. How very spring!
Thursday. 4:01 PM. Same day, different mood. This just goes to show how tumultuous life is for me. This morning I was doing great. This afternoon I'm ready to throw in the towel.
I've spent the better part of the day online doing some hardcore data mining. I was looking for a job, trying to go through as many databases and webpages and human resources sites I could get my hands on. I've turned up a couple of good leads. But, I'm worried that I'm not going anywhere.
Furthermore, in the last two days, I've had some significant conversations with friends via the internet or email about life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness (among other things). And I've been teetering on the cusp of an introspective attack? collapse? journey? quest? disaster? for a while now. What does that mean exactly? I'm not sure myself. I have a strange desire to just shut myself in my room and not talk to anyone. At the same time, I want to run away not knowing quite where to run to. And more yet, I want to beat the crap out of anyone that gives me a hard time, upsets me, or just plainly doesn't understand me. It's all irrational.
I am so not okay. I put on a good face. But there's something missing. My heart isn't in things. I feel confused. I feel at a loss for how to drive myself forward. I am lonely and dissatisfied. Same symptoms. Different city.
© 2001 Edmond Y. Chang. All original material. All rights reserved.
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