I wanted to get to the bottom of the lake so that I could love the top of the mountain.

I want to let myself know that everything that has happened in my past has been worth the millions of failures. To find what the bottom of the lake feels like, with cement tied to my feet. Letting myself fall as far down as I can do. Sometimes without my own consent, but knowingly going down into that dark pit that has scared me my entire life. Head first.

I used to play with the idea of watching my entire life fall apart around me while I did nothing. Last year I decided to commit to the breakdown and see what would happen. I quit my job, I ended my lease, I threw out nearly all of my belongings, and thought I would be able to jump back into normality whenever I wanted to. Little did I know, that is im-fucking-possible. What happened instead was so much more than I had expected to experience.

During all of this I was amidst the dream of getting the heart of my ex back and to try and start a new life with her somewhere neither of us had ever lived. Create our own little vacation life in North Carolina. I thought that if I could get my footing in North Carolina that I would be able to start a new life and let go of all that had happened in the past between us. I didn’t take into consideration that, “No,” may be her answer to my dream. I dived head first with a bandanna wrapped around my eyes and went straight into a brick wall. The brick wall was my fear of being alone. I damn-near almost broke my skull making that jump.

Up until recently it was completely unbearable to picture the idea of living without her by my side. I didn’t see any possibilities outside of what I circumscribed as ‘Our Life Together.’ When I found out that she had been dating another man I started to fall apart piece by piece. I was allowing myself to wallow and make the late night calls that those awfully catchy pop songs are made from. “I love you. I will do anything for you. Please take me back. I don’t want to do this life without you.” Something I am sure most ladies have had this displeasure of experiencing. (I am formerly apologizing for all of us men, and woman, who do this… We wake up the next day quite ashamed of ourselves too.)

Recently Taylor Swift hit a note with me (I can’t believe I am making a T. Swift reference here)- There is a part of the song that mademe feel embarrassed that I was the guy on the other side of the phone call trying to get back together with his ex.

“…So he calls me up and he’s like, ‘I still love you, ‘
And I’m like… ‘I’m just… I mean this is exhausting, you know, like,
We are never getting back together. Like, ever'”

If you pardon the ‘Basic B*#$%” grammar, this ethos I think may resonate with some woman who have been through this. And for the few of us men who actually will listen to cheesy pop music we will droop our jowls and look at the ground with a flood of humiliation.

Those of us who have failed to follow through with out commitments and make the agendas entirely about us may have fallen into this cyclicle cycle of late night phone calls. Doling out the “I Love You’s” faster than a turret can unload 500 rounds of ammunition. Which is essentially what we are doing when we do that. Killing our cause.

I finally got to a point about a month ago where I had done this to this woman I had cared about very dearly. I watched her finally crack under the pressure of my longings. I was needing a black and white answer about where we were going and what we were doing. I gave her the ultimatum that I told myself I would never do, but I couldn’t help myself. I was out of control with my emotions.

With that uncontrollable compulsion, I was forcing her to make a life decision in a dead-lined time frame. Not a loving thing to do whatsoever. When I got the call at 7 in the morning with tears flowing from her after she had broke up with her boyfriend and I heard the words, “I can’t do this anymore. You have pushed me to my limits. I can’t talk to you again. This is killing me.”- I finally understood what I had been doing for so long. I was not paying attention to the needs of her and what she needed to get done in her life. With or without me. I was being an unloving friend.

A cool rush of understanding flowed over me. It felt similar to when you are already asleep after a drunken night of alcohol induced stress and tears and your friend finds you shivering on their couch and tosses a blankets over you. For a split second your mind awakens and you feel the warmth and pressure of gentle kindness wrapped around you. In that same second you are back to sleep.

Everything is going to be okay. I don’t need to force these things anymore. Unfortunately some of my biggest life lessons have directly influenced people around me. This time I knew what rock bottom was and how much healthier I am for making it there. More importantly that if I am to ever do that again I need to turn my phone off. Better yet- Throw it into a body of water. I didn’t intend to pull anyone down with me on this journey but I am now more grateful every day that I am alive. I have called and apologized for what I did and I think both of us are in a better place for it. Speaking for myself I know that I am better off. I hope she is too.

I know this isn’t my normal Depressive Dusty tone but now that I have made it as far down as I have ever been, I wake up more and more refreshed on what I am doing, where I am going, and who I have myself surrounded with. It only took my going overboard and then  diving little further to realize what I find important in my life and how important it is to fully believe in myself. I never knew what confidence tasted like. It was forbidden fruit to me as a child and later a young adult. I am finally in a place where I believe I am capable of so much more than what I am already doing.

If I can give just one piece of advice for those of you who walk in the footsteps of empiricism- Please try and avoid dragging anyone down into the pit with you. They don’t deserve to experience your personal torment. Reach for help when you need it. More importantly you must find what you love to do. Do it as often as possible. Wake up and give yourself the credit for actually getting up. Start a slow pace from there as you become who you want to be. And for fucking Christ sake, give yourself some patience. None of this stuff will happen over night. I have learned this a thousand times over and I remind myself everyday that everything takes time and patience.

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