Boyhood

Richard Linklater’s “Boyhood” is a beautiful and perfect movie. I have needed something to take my mind off things, and this film hit the spot.

Private posts

I am going to be doing a series of private, password-protected posts. I’m sorry, but it has to be this way, as I am probably going to overshare.

If you know me personally, then you know there’s one name I would use to password protect my posts. If you know that name, you are welcome to read my stories. The first letter is capitalized. The rest of you – all 5 or 6 of you, that is – I’m sorry. Many apologies. But I have to do this.

Ugh.

The fresh pain of a breakup may not be the worst pain one can experience. But it is painful all the same.

I have not experienced this pain very often in my life, because I have not had the sort of dating life that leads to repeated incidents of such pain. I am thankful for this. I am cognizant that I missed out on a lot of experiences growing up, but I also avoided the pain that goes hand in hand with an ending.

Once upon a time, I was a man who wore his emotions on his sleeve. I would spill my guts to almost anyone who wanted to talk. I whined and moaned about various problems in the relationships I did have. I publicly pined when relationships ended. I used Facebook as a sort of venting board, probably because I thought my ex would see it and things would immediately change.

But a wacky relationship a few years ago changed me. I don’t think I realized it until recently. I put myself out there in a major way, and ended up having it thrown back in my face. As a result, I became more cautious. My guard is almost constantly up. My walls are thicker. I do not open up to people any more. I do not intentionally keep people at a distance, but I do it all the same.

I do not want to be this way. And obviously, it is not healthy for a relationship. I don’t want to keep people at arm’s length, but I suppose I am so scared of rejection that I can’t help it. I don’t know why I try to do things myself when I had someone there to help me. I guess I was terrified. I was scared of being rejected. Scared of not measuring up. Scared of my flaws driving the one I love away. Scared of being found wanting.

I was talking with a friend today. She tried to get me to open up and discuss my feelings, and I told her I didn’t want to. She called me a stoic warrior (which was not really a compliment) and said I do not need to do it alone. I still didn’t open up, of course. But I have been thinking about the things she said, and I am wondering: if someone who only really knows me through interactions on Twitter and Gmail chat can see these walls I put up for myself, what must it have been like for the girl I love? How frustrating must it have been?

I imagine it was very frustrating. And I imagine it could not have been easy. And I can’t blame her for walking away.

This is something I need to change. I need to pierce the walls I created for myself a few years ago. I need to open myself up, to be honest and true. I need to do this to such a degree that getting hurt is a possibility. Because I’m hurting badly right now, and it’s all my fault, and it is something I could have easily prevented.

There are thousands of songs about how much love hurts. I have written a few myself. But love hurts even worse when a treasured relationship ends and it’s solely your fault. It hurts worse when you weren’t the person you could have been, when you keep yourself hidden away because you don’t want to be hurt. It hurts worse when your own self-created walls are the thing that drove the love of your life away.

This blog entry is more than I have opened up in years. I should have done it long ago. I can be the person I used to be, because I am still that person inside. I am resolved to finding that person, no matter how painful the search becomes.

Vacation! Sort Of!

I’m back in Houston for a week. More specifically, I am back in Katy today, then in Galveston tomorrow through Sunday, then back in Katy until next Wednesday. You can see that it is much easier to just say I’m back in Houston for a week, so we’ll stick with that.

I do not have much time for writing blog entries, because I am both lazy and on vacation. So I’ll keep this short:

Work-related things: I am writing a ton of words these days. Most are for Bleacher Report, but I also have a few profiles in the works for other outlets. I will share information on these profiles when I can, but I am very excited about the opportunities I’m getting these days. I am eager to spread my big feathered ginger wings and fly into other non-sports areas. And on the sporting front, I am working with a few writers who will be contributing to The Clasico (my nearly-defunct soccer site) this upcoming season.

Personal: Amy spent the summer with me, which was amazing. She is now back in Florida, which is not so amazing. But this is her final semester of school, which is amazing. In short, things are more amazing than they are not amazing.

I told you this would be short.

StrongLifts Update: Week 3

I wanted to post a quick update with my progress after three weeks of steady StrongLift workouts.

If you recall, these were my beginning numbers. Keep in mind that these numbers are for 5 sets of 5 reps in all but deadlift, which is 1 set of 5 reps:

Squat: 135
Bench: 100
Row: 65
Press: 50
Deadlift: 135

Here are my current numbers after 3 weeks:

Squat: 195
Bench: 135
Row: 90
Press: 85
Deadlift: 215

As you can see, I’ve made remarkable strength gains already. I’m packing on muscle, and it is readily apparent when I look in the mirror. My shoulders are getting bigger, and my pecs…well, I have pecs for the first time in my life. My upper back is starting to develop a bit of a V-shape, too.

So far, I’m loving the workout. I’m also eating super clean and doing a post-workout protein and creatine smoothie. I may need to up my caloric intake once I start getting into heavier weights, but for now, I’m managing just fine.

It might be time to buy some new clothes

I’ve lost a substantial amount of weight. The numbers I see on the scale are encouraging, of course, as are my body fat percentages. 

But even more encouraging are the moments like today, when I went to put on a pair of shorts. This particular pair of shorts was a size too small for me just 8 weeks ago. Today? They fell right off. I’d need to secure them tightly with a belt to even wear them.

It’s a small thing. But it is a cool moment for me. And I guess it’s time for me to go out and buy some new clothes that actually fit.