How Did I Get In This Position?

All the air went out of my tires tonight when I realized…

This happens to me over and over again. I have to believe I have a backstop so that I can go out and do what I want.

Then eventually I find out that no backstop is forever and this forces me to grow up a little bit.

One of my backstops over the past 14 years has been my guest house. Now this is gone. I have to move into the world and make my way.

I felt so deflated when I got the news Tuesday evening that I’d need to move out in June. I was just down for the count. I wanted to cry.

That’s how I normally react to bad news — I curl into a ball and long for mommy to hold me.

Wednesday morning after a cold shower, I was ready to tackle my situation.

Now it is Wednesday night and I’m crawling into bed defeated, but first I must whip myself publicly. I must climb on to my cross on my blog and hammer in some nails and tell the world, “Don’t forgive me for I knew what I did.”

I always hope that my salvation will come from above. That my family will be there for me. That my shul will be there for me. That my friends will be there for me. That my job will be there for me. That my body and my strength and my health and my mind will always be there for me.

It’s devastating when I find out that nothing is permanent, not even my ability to craft a sentence or to walk a mile or to cash a check.

Then I’m thrown back on my own resources. I have to face myself. Oh, God, do I not want to look in that mirror!

The primary reason that I am in this position tonight is the flawed nature of my character. I’m not a mentch. I’m not an adult. I’m not particularly responsible.

I’ve failed to make good choices over the course of my life and therefore I live on the edge and am a bloody menace to society.

I tend to do what I want to do — whether it is to pursue girls or acting or writing or Torah talks — regardless of the consequences.

When I was pushing myself to the brink of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome in early 1988, I kept saying to myself, “I’ll break through or I’ll break down. Either way, I’ll get love.”

The little boy is an all too large part of my adult character. I fear that much of me hasn’t moved on from age four.

Am I still yearning to suck on mommy’s teat? No doubt. I’m a pisher who wants a lot of sex but is not capable of marriage.

I waste too much time goofing off, telling jokes, having deep and meaningful conversations when I should concentrate on learning the Alexander Technique. I should concentrate on my own use and not get sucked into my student’s need. Just looking after myself (should be 75% of my concern) and looking out for the use of my student, that’s enough.

But is it enough for me? No sirree. I have to crack jokes. I demand intense conversations. I fritter away my precious training hours with playing the class clown.

I wonder if I might get more out of my Alexander training by increasing my silence and my concentration on my own use?

What are my other choices that have gotten me into this mess? I complain that I can’t work a real job because of my Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Not true! I worked real jobs for 40 hours a week for months during the last half of 1996 and the first half of 1997. What I mean is that I can’t work a real job and have anything left over to write, which often feels like my primary purpose for living.

I took no money from family from 1993-2007. I paid my own way. I am capable of adult responsibility. I paid my bills. I’m capable of independent living, but I’ve never built much of a safety net for myself, let alone for a family and for others in need.

The solution is for me to take on more and more adult responsibility.

But that will cut way into my writing time. My ideal life is the maximum of freedom so I can feel and write. But I often carve out vast swathes of spare time but produce nothing but onanism. Wanker! That’s what I am!

Damn, boy, get a life!

Must lie down now and listen to Igor Ledochowski’s self-help lectures. Follow them with his guided inner-focus meditations. Then try to sleep so I can be a man tomorrow. A man takes on obligations to other people. The writer in me wants no obligations but to my muse.

Most writers I hear these days, they refer to their work as their gift to the world. I think of my writing as rolling a hand grenade into a crowd. I want to blow things up. I want to set the world ablaze.

I see myself through the smoke on top of a hill laughing like a lunatic as I dance around drunk with my own destructive potential.

When are you gonna come down
When are you going to land
I should have stayed on the farm
I should have listened to my old man

You know you can’t hold me forever
I didn’t sign up with you
I’m not a present for your friends to open
This boy’s too young to be singing the blues

So goodbye yellow brick road
Where the dogs of society howl
You can’t plant me in your penthouse
I’m going back to my plough

Back to the howling old owl in the woods
Hunting the horny back toad
Oh I’ve finally decided my future lies
Beyond the yellow brick road

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see My work has been noted in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (
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