Saturday, February 6, 2010
Time to Hit the Gym
I believe it's time to start hitting the gym. It's a thought that has been floating around my head for quite some time now. For years I loved working out. I loved eating well. It all made me feel good about myself, good about aging, and helped me maintain a positive mood. When Michael got sick a couple of years ago it all came to a screeching halt. I was suddenly using all of my extra time to research treatments, or using my time being with Michael as much as possible. Now that he is gone, I have just been too depressed to care about myself.
When I think about getting back into the gym, I can think of many positive outcomes. Those positive outcomes are also things that I'm not quite sure I am ready for. As a gay man, going to the gym is often equated with going to church. Everyone is there. Everyone is very focused, and everyone is generally friendly. It can be a bit cruisey, meaning there is some flirting and checking each other out. I suppose it is only human nature.
I suppose that cruising is part of the draw. Who doesn't appreciate a bit of eye candy. Who doesn't enjoy the ego boost when someones lingering eye is fixated on you. In all, it is really nothing too overt, just plain healthy exercise of the body and the libido I like to think.
One aspect of life that I do need to begin working on is meeting new friends. Not that I plan to replace my old friends, it's just that I need to meet some single people. Everyone I know is in a relationship. Everyone that I used to socialize with was primarily as a couple. This has become painfully clear to me each weekend. Aside from the kids, I don't see or hear from anybody all weekend. People are busy with their lives. I have come to realize that for everyone else, Michael's death was something that created a loss back in September. They may think of him from time to time, but their lives go on. They go back to their husband, or wives, or partners, and get back into their daily routines. For me, life changed dramatically.
I don't begrudge anybody. I know that the loss that I am experiencing is because I am the one who was widowed. If he hadn't died, Michael would be sitting right here beside me. I wouldn't be writing this post. Maybe we would be getting ready to go out for a night on the town. Maybe a quiet dinner at a favorite restaurant. Maybe we would be having friends over for dinner. Maybe we would be lying in bed watching a movie. Maybe we would have locked the door, lit some candles, put on some soft music, and enjoyed massages by each other. Maybe we would be having sex! Okay, with the kids running around the house? Maybe not.
The point is that I need to start socializing a bit. I need to have single friends that I can call up to go out and do something with at the last minute. I need to have friends who might decide to gather for drinks at a neighborhood bar, and call to invite me. I'm not sure that I would accept any invitations quite yet, but I know that I can't just stay home forever. My best friend cannot be this slim, light weight Dell laptop.
I know that putting myself back in the gym environment will definitely help me to socialize a bit. It will put me in a place where I can meet other guys who might want to socialize. It will also put me in a place where other guys might pay me some notice, and I don't know how I want to respond to that. I know that if I am there wearing my wedding ring, they will assume I am married, and will be less likely to approach me. I am not the most outgoing person. I am actually a shy and somewhat reserved kind of guy. It helps me when the other guys are more outgoing. I'm not really talking about romantic or sexual opportunities. I'm talking about platonic friendships. It all seems very overwhelming, and I suppose that is why I choose to sit at home. Doing nothing is much easier than doing something new.
I don't particularly enjoy the newness of my life. In fact, I hate it. I want my life back. I want Michael's life back, but I know that I cant have it. I don't want to be a single person, and yet I am. I loved being married to Michael. I loved being part of a couple, yet short of becoming "The Ghost and Mrs. Muir," I have to accept that this is my life now. What do I want to make of it?
What am I waiting for? Nothing is going to change.
The only thing that can change is me.
Am I wanting change? Am I ready for change?