I'm feeling rather euphoric these days. Part of the reason has to do with the new condo -- I'm getting very excited -- but in general something else is going on, as well...
I feel much more at peace now than at any other time in my life. I look at other people, and especially women, differently. I accept them for their flaws and I try to understand how they feel, how they view the world.
No longer driven by libido (mine has been dialed down a lot), I take a much more leisurely attitude towards women and how I interact with them. I may or may not feel the desire to bone them, but I no longer care enough to obsess about it. Beautiful women are all around me, just as exotic sports cars (ie, "panty-droppers") are. It's enough that I can dream about them, I don't need to possess them. I just take it all in stride.
I recognize that I may not be very good in relationships, and that's fine. I am what I am. I can only do the best with what I've got (or what God gave me, if you're religiously inclined). If a woman is not going to be my romantic partner, perhaps she can be my friend. And for the first time in my life, I am perfectly okay with that.
I have nothing to regret about my life. It's a very good life. I am physically healthy. I am mentally sharp and alert (thanks to multivitamins and Omega-3). I am feeling good (exemplified here). I can loosen my coin purse without feeling guilt or remorse.
And while I've not won awards and accolades, while I've not reached the pinnacle of success in the eyes of others, I feel very good about my achievements. It was not a wasted life -- I learned a lot, and I continue to learn. I have many skills and talents. I've acquired wisdom, much more than I realize, I'm sure.
Even my mortality I am learning to take in stride. At the age of 57, I can see the end coming -- 20 years to dementia is a mere blip in time -- but I feel more philosophical about life. I can't live forever, but I can live now. Fear of the end is my only enemy, and fear can only be dispelled through living well.
And I am living well, despite what others may believe. For far too long, I've measured my life against others, and this is a toxic position to take. The only thing that matters is how I feel about my life. I am doing what I enjoy -- it may not impress you, but I don't need to impress you (another first for me).
To achieve this state of being, I've learned to live on the knife edge of reality. What do I mean by that?
Somehow, I've managed to find myself existing contemporaneously in both "reality" and "fantasy". The two are interchangeable. The life that I could've had with Mary is as "real" as the life I have now. "Experience" is no longer confined to my perception of reality.
It's as if my imagination can take on a life of its own once seeded with a bit of reality. The life that I could've had with her is now a part of who I am.
It is a precarious balance, but oddly enough, I find myself solidly on good footing. My Silver Beast is my Maserati. The women with whom I might've been can be my friends. My new home will be a wonderful refuge (tied to my plasma TV), but I imagine trekking around the globe with nothing more than my credit card. These are all equivalent "realities".
Possibilities are realities. The only reality that counts is the one that you feel the closest affinity to. And I feel affinity to many of them...