Adam Avitable can be intense

Down The Gorilla Hole – Why Not Write Something Depressing on Christmas Eve?

I haven’t been able to write – to really, painfully, ripping off a scab write – in a while.

There’s plenty to say. I always have something to say. Getting it out in the way that I want has been the obstacle. How many ways can I talk about things being hard or difficult or frustrating before it becomes rote? And, compared to the rest of the world, do my problems measure up in any way? What is my hardship compared to what you or you or you are going through?

I’ll try, though.

Business has been slow. Like, agonizingly watching paint dry slow. Every order that comes in keeps the lights on, but nothing more. If I was working in an office, this might be bearable, but I’m going stir crazy at home. I work at home, stay at home to avoid going out and spending more money, sleep at home and it’s all home home home home home. There are moments when I want to burn this fucking house to the ground just so I don’t have to spend another second here.

Friends have disappointed me. There are people in my life who mean a lot to me, to whom I have given so much, emotionally and otherwise, and it’s a painful slap in the face discovering that it’s not reciprocal. I was even told that my friendship with one person couldn’t continue because of her newly embraced religious devotion. Sometimes people wonder why I rebel so much against blind ritual, tradition, and following the dogma of an organization that purports to be religious – maybe it’s because I get to be the guy that feels like shit because his friendship would be against the principles of a church. Not all friends have been disappointing – I don’t want it to sound like that – but it’s happened frequently enough that I’m disjointed and doubting myself.

The fact that we’re sinking neck-deep into the holiday season hasn’t helped, either. The holidays are a place for family and friends and tradition, and I actively avoid traditions, don’t always get along with much of my family, and can’t rely on some of my friends. After a two-hour appearance at a family party this evening, I’ll be skipping Christmas and just waiting on 2013 to hurry up and get here already.


The biggest issue, though, and the reason that I’ve had so much difficulty writing, is the massive crippling disappointment I have in myself. In little over a month, I’ll be 36, and I’m not where I wanted to be by this age. I’ve started over. I’ve gone back to Go without collecting my $200.

I’ve plateaued on my weight loss for a while now. If I can dig down and find that motivation to exercise, I know that I will continue to lose weight, but right now, I’m not happy with how I look. It’s in my hands, but that doesn’t make it any less of a burden right now.

I’m single. I thought I’d be married and have kids. I didn’t realize that I’d fail at marriage, get divorced, and have to find someone new, who I could trust. I thought I found that person, but I was wrong. Her cruelty broke me and I started over yet again.

All of these goals I set for myself when I was younger have been for naught. Instead, I’m divorced, wading through the minefield that is dating, with no children and less security than I had at 30.

Where do I want to be? Who do I want to be? These are the questions that keep me from writing, because to examine them is to face the possibility that I can’t get there.

I know what I don’t want. I don’t want to have this financial albatross. I don’t want this large house filled with useless trinkets and gadgets. I don’t want to keep treading water. I don’t want to continue to wake up alone every morning.

I want to be back in Los Angeles.

I want to write professionally.

I want to have a family of my own.

And I’m terrified that I won’t get any of that.

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28 Replies to “Down The Gorilla Hole – Why Not Write Something Depressing on Christmas Eve?”

  1. D.B.

    “Strange, isn’t it? Each man’s life touches so many other lives. When he isn’t around he leaves an awful hole, doesn’t he?” –Clarence “It’s a Wonderful Life”

  2. Kaply

    Try this instead.
    Who am I? Because honestly, that is where to start. Figuring out who I am led me to finding out what I needed that was missing, and that led to working out how to get it. Some things I thought about myself needed to be let go of, and some things needed to be accepted.
    If you want things to be different, it helps to know what, instead of what you don’t want.
    And I know you can do this. I have watched for years as you have done difficult things and made it through.
    Please keep your balls to yourself, though.

  3. Amanda Gee

    There is movie or maybe it was the Simpsons that had a quote that I think applies here : Go ahead and be sad and I will be sitting right beside you holding your hand till you are not sad anymore. Call me anytime and I will be right there holding your hand.


    Sometimes you need to make the leap. Is your business something you could o from any house anywhere? Maybe you need to make the first jump and head westward. You have lots of people out here who would be happy to lend an ear, a hand, a shoulder to cry on – whatever it is you need to get where you need to be.

    Maybe if the “where” is settled, the “what” will fall into place.

  5. Jennifer

    I think it would be pretty boring if our lives went according to our own plans. I certainly did not expect to be where I am at 39 an I had a plan much like yourself. I am however quite eager to see how things unfold now that I’ve given up control and the need to be so rigid with where I think my life should go because it just made me unhappy.

    We all have a journey of self discovery. Instead of focusing on what you DON’T have or even looking at things in a negative way, look at things from the positive. I see your relationship with Amy as a positive thing. You both grew, you both needed something else. There were a lot of positive things about the relationship, you are focusing on all the negatives. Even this other relationship….crap happens. You learned what you do NOT want in a partner. Better now than when you’ve wasted years of your life with them. You learned about yourself and I hope from that you gained a better sense what you deserve from another person. You did the growing that you needed to do before you met your real life partner.

    I am sorry you are having some problems with friends. I like to think of that philosophy that you have friends for a reason, a season or a lifetime.

    Try giving up your need to be in control, once I did that myself I became a lot more at ease with my life.

    You have a lot to offer friends, and you have a lot to offer other people and the world.

  6. Momma Be Thy Name

    Agh. I wish you were closer. We could have a talk. I totally understand. I was there. In a few aspects, I’m still there. I spent this entire year realizing that things are not what they seem – from people, to situations, to items purchased in a store – and I’m disillusioned on so many levels and fear some of the same things you do. I got so disgusted with many things (I won’t discuss here) that I’m having my first Christmas at home with just my husband and kids. If you want/need to talk, though I know you’re crawling with friends that have, or, I’m certain, will, step up, just drop me a line. I’m around.

  7. Maura

    I get it, and I feel for you going through this at the holidays, whether or not you embrace the tradition they usually entail.

    But disappointment will pass, even if it’s a hairy bitch at the moment, so long as you maintain some faith in yourself. Plans are just that: Plans. I think that life kind of happens while we’re distracted by the road map we’ve laid out for ourselves. Take small steps to change the parts that aren’t working for you, and you’ll find yourself on a new, hopefully better, road.

  8. Meg

    Adam, please breathe. Literally take some deep breaths. I don’t comment often but as a long time reader, know that you are loved and admired by many (or at least by me).

  9. annabelle

    I’ve read you for several years now.

    When I was very deep in my own first real taste of depression and grief your blog either made me laugh (which was something that was very hard for me to do) or made me feel sane and not so alone in it all.

    Finally, being just a reader and then someone who left the occasion comment was not enough and I thought maybe I’d give blog writing a try. You gave me stellar advice and you encouraged me to give it a go. By encouraging me to find my voice and be true to myself, you helped me to find something I am proud of about myself. You were open and kind and you did not know me at all. For someone who I suspect may be viewed as selfish sometimes, I think that you are actually such a giver that it can leave you emotionally depleted and sad when you realize most people don’t give back as much as you give them.

    I still come here for the funny but I also come here for the real. I think you’re a very complex person and I like you very very much. I think what you are feeling is along the lines of the new normal for people our age. I think there are lots of comforting things I want to say to you but then I think what do they mean coming from me, a fan girl, who deletes more sentences than she leaves, fearing that she sound trite and more than a little stalkerish?

    All I will say is that I believe that you can accomplish those things that you want for yourself. It may not be in the timetable that you had envisioned, but rare is the life that turns out exactly as planned. There are those that dream and those that do and anyone who lives his life with as much blunt force honesty as you do will land in the those that do category. Why? Because to merely dream for better things is inauthentic and you don’t strike me as a man who tolerates illusions for very long.

    Much love to you this holiday season Adam. If all else fails, try stepping out of your comfort zone of keeping those who’ve hurt you at arms length and pull them in a little closer. To me that is one of the main things this overly commercialized shitastic season is all about.

  10. Kari Martin

    Change sucks, and that is what you are going through right now. I don’t have any assvice for you, just want you to know you are not alone, even if it may feel that way. I’m sorry you are hurting, I wish I could do something for you. I think knowing what you want is the first step to getting it – so I will pray with all my might and send all the positive thoughts out for you that these things begin to happen for you.

  11. kimt205

    So sorry Adam. So many people do love you, but I know that’s a small consolation when things seem so overwhelming.

    Nothing I can do or say will change things but know I’m here for you and I understand, cause I’m slowly spiraling away my own self.

  12. Karen Sugarpants

    You jackass.

    I know that YOU know you have always had this Canadian friend who loves you unconditionally. So there’s that. So when I say the following, hear my heart in this:

    You’re not where you want to be in several areas of your life. What the fuck are you gonna do about it?

  13. TheQueen

    I can only comment on the sucky friends. Think of them as children. You helped them when they needed it, gave them self-confidence, made yourself a figure of such trust that they felt comfortable rejecting you to your face. Now you send these friends out into the world after supporting them emotionally. Perhaps some day they will grow up enough to help you instead.

  14. beearl

    I hate the business about the sucky friends. I’ve only met you a couple of times, but I dig the Avitable. Wish we could help you out a bit more during this difficult time, just by being around. We are thinking of you, man.

    And we are wishing you a Merry Christmas, regardless.

  15. Jrm

    Ive been through a bit of what you describe. You
    May not be where you want, but you know what you don’t want. Which is actually a good start. I had a therapist once who advocated a “game” when I was feeling stuck and too amxious to move forward….I’ll try to give an example

    What if you moved to LA? What is the worst thing that could happen? You might fail at writing as a way to financially support yourself? So what? What happens then? You go, you try worst case you are pennliless and homeless. Eh, you would at least have tried

    What if I never find love and never have a family?
    I’ll die alone and moldy. Eh. Then again there is a lot of freedom to being single…. Etc. What if? What is the worst that could happen? May npt be all that bad…. May be that you realize that there are some absolutes you are unwilling to risk everything for.

    Hang in there.

  16. Megan

    My darling… I am sorry you feel this way.


    You have not failed because you are not where you’d thought you’d be. Man plans, God laughs. Maybe you had your eye on the end and forgot about the journey.

    Do what you love. The rest will eventually fall into place. It’s never too late to start over – ask Grandma Moses. Ask me. It’s not over until you are dead.


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