The Sugar Man, The Suicidal and the Lesbian

It has been a long weekend, too long for me. I took off Friday thinking to relax and sleep more. So it was nice to wake up late and spend more time lying in bed. I was staring at the clock and waiting minutes go by. At 8.30 am. I started the day just doing the minimal and necessary, took a shower, had breakfast, cleaned the apartment and did groceries, everything done before noon. Later, my Swedish friend phoned telling to join her to watch a documentary at Bytown, an old cinema that resists monumentally the smash of technology, commercial films and fast food cinema crap, but they sell popcorn. The movie was about Sixto Rodriguez a.k.a.“The Sugar Man”, a guy who wrote songs in the 60’s with lyrics comparable or even more poetically than Bob Dylan did. It was expensive the ticket but anyways, I didn’t have nothing to do that day. The cinema was so old, it was go back in time in the 60’s or 70’s, chairs on wood, one big space, red curtains, old posters on the walls, incredible experience. After having said to my friend about my homosexuality she treats me normally, never stop invited me to do activities, always calls, it seems I told her something banal, no fuzz, no drama, no tears. I was glad of her reaction, never turned her back to me and also I felt the burden I thought that I had, never was there. I became again invisible. She’s trying to help me to meet people or do activities. Everything finished at 7 pm and she drove me home. Day over.

Saturday was a heavy day in all senses. I don’t know if I should say I felt suicidal, but my life was becoming meaningless. I spent all day almost in bed because I felt tired and with pain in my lower back. No emails, no phone calls. I tried to check some websites like Meet Up. The only one interesting was People Who Broke Up. I sent my request but I don’t know because I’m gay I’ll be able to join them, it seemed a group for straights and let me tell you, in Ottawa there is no Meet Up for gays or lesbians and I’m serious. That Saturday, I was thinking how to make hours go faster; I watched all kind of movies and stupid tv shows on line. I slept in the afternoon so I though probably I should go to a bar downtown but then I changed my mind. I don’t want to see the same scenario: young people, all in groups, loud music and being invisible. I listened some music, I stayed awake until late, I was thinking what the meaning of my life and friendship were here in Ottawa, assuming if there’s one, if someday I’ll be able to meet people, I mean decent ones.

I started to check that website Plenty of Fish (POF). Believe me, the lesbian meet market pushes you to be vegetarian if you know what I mean. I think was the most desperate thing I did lately for meeting “friends” just that.  I was on the site and a chat window popped up. I saw the picture of the woman, a chubby one dressed with a tight pink black leather corset, scary face and her pseudo was something like “Cutie etc etc” . Obviously, the girl was looking for sex or something kinky. If that was the idea she was a pro for turning me dead off. There was another girl, pseudo Shy Kitten, another fatty one with boyfriend who wanted to try something new probably with him and somebody else. No way. Why those kinds of people want to contact you despite what you write on your profile to not to contact that “kind” of people? Then I realized she had only high school. So probably her limited education or lack of attention didn’t let her READ what I wrote. Another woman, married with 2 kids of 4 and 2 years old, started sending me a message saying “you must have an awesome body with that work out”. What? I wrote I had an injured knee. So I replied that and she said “Oh, I read work I didn’t read the rest”. Ok, another desperate housewife with high school education. So, the education system is failure, isn’t it? She told me she was married and full time mom. And of course, she asked me for a picture. I told her I was ugly and she didn’t miss anything and I stopped sending her messages. Tell me if after those little stories you wouldn’t feel… crashed? or hopeless? or just discouraged? Or probably all together. Saturday seemed endlessly painful and it was.

On the third floor, and last one, of my building I heard noises that I almost forgot in these years. I heard heels walking in and outside the bedroom. I think a man lives there and some weekends her girlfriend comes and goes. I heard people yelling. The woman yelled something loud then, the guy replied with the same tone seconds later. And after, somebody slammed the door. It put me down, sad and I had some souvenirs of my ex relationship. We had lots of fights, too many slammed doors. And some silence was required to heal that bad experience. It was sad so see other people experience the same and they aren’t able to say “enough” and split when things are enough “healthy”. But then I remember the oldest you get, the scariest you are to finish and start from scratch a new relationship especially in Ottawa. Sometimes, people prefer play “safe” even if isn’t safe at all.

Resurrection Sunday was dark too. But despite I was furious, frustrated and many other things that I experienced for being socially isolated I decided to go to church, again, this is the Unitarian Church nothing Catholic, very opened mind and more focused on community work. I saw that girl, from India and I wanted to talk to her because I thought she had a gay-lesbian network. I waited sitting in on the bench when another girl come and said hi spontaneously to me. Who was she? She was the new stagier from Boston. She’ll be at church for 1 year and just arrived last Friday. I was surprised when she said she was looking for apartments, I thought church provided that. I gave her some advices about it, she was nice and grateful like all Unitarians are. Then the Indian girl was able to talk to me. I explained the whole situation, loneliness, emptiness (no, it’s not a Smashing Pumpkins song) and how suicidal can this city can be. She was very open to talk about herself. She had the same problem despite she has a partner for 20 years. In not particularly order, she told me about her life, when she came as refugee, where she was working, her difficulties to make friends, discrimination for being immigrant or racial or gender, her suicidal ideas, anxiety, her medication, her therapist. To be honest, and I want to be very honest, for people who read this blog, it isn’t a joke when I said Ottawa/Canada can be hard when you’re alone. I experienced the same things as she did. I didn’t have a suicidal plan as she had (and it was discovered time ago, she described even details). I thought I was the only one feeling those differences, all things I said and write in this blog were confirmed by her and in her daily life. I told her last Saturday I was feeling kind of suicidal, she gave me a panda hug, while hugging me I never stopped repeating “I’m normal, I’m normal”. She said “yes, you’re and is totally normal what you’re feeling”.

My therapist told me several times for calming me down or to relax that “everything is going to be fine”. At some point that cliché phrase was useless but that girl said “it’s totally normal what you’re feeling” the relief in my body was so high, so big, and I didn’t want to leave that place, I just wanted to talk and talk and talk about my life, about my fears, about my sorrows. Sometimes my therapist didn’t listen or cut things while I was talking, things that for me were or are so important, to turn it into something “positive”, that’s her style. But I think, there’s a moment that thing, that doesn’t belong to my cultural background says anything to me.

I wish my therapist to reincarnate in her next life as an immigrant. Nothing else.


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