For the past few days I have been sharing – probably more like over-sharing – details of my current mental state, a troubling mash-up of mild anxiety, general uneasiness, a lack of focus and mild sadness. I have tried to address this situation on my own, without really understanding “it,” or why I am in “it.”

Sad box manLo and behold, after reading my post from yesterday, my friend Carrie put a name to what I have been feeling: ennui.

ennui (änˈwē): a feeling of listlessness and dissatisfaction arising from a lack of occupation or excitement; a lack of spirit, enthusiasm, or interest. “He suffered from a general sense of ennui.”

As I have examined this concept – with some input from the oh-so-perceptive-and-similarly-situated Carrie – I have come to understand that, yes, I am experiencing “a general sense of ennui.” (and what an S.A.T. word ennui is, right?)

The thing is, for going on five years, my beloved partner M and I have struggled almost daily, trying to figure out a way, a pathway, for us to remain together forever. Almost daily, I faxed and called and emailed elected officials, I called on Senators and City Councils, I wrote to a Cardinal (holy man, not bird) and to the editor, all trying to convince the world that my “gay” relationship with M was real and genuine, solid and sacred, and deserving and worthy of all the rights and privileges afforded any heterosexual relationship.

Then, in late June, the almost unimaginable happened and Section 3 of DOMA was repealed. Suddenly the path was clear – there WAS a way for my Beloved and I to be together, forever. And we were ecstatic.

We got married – HOORAY. We engaged a law firm to represent us and our case to the USCIS. We are currently in the middle of gathering info, filling out and filing forms and then the waiting begins. Just waiting. And I think that is why/when the “ennui tsunami” hit me.

calm seaI know this is gonna’ sound kinda’ ridiculous but, after all that fighting and determination, all that struggle and resolve – and all-too-often disappointment – now, to be on the brink of everything being awesome, well, weird as it sounds, there is a hole in my life. Ennui. And it seems odd to me that I should even feel this way, but I do…

I am sure the ennui will pass and I thank Carrie for helping me identify it. I am also visiting my therapist in an effort to wrestle this demon out of my head. It is no small comfort to have arrived at this place and I thank my Beloved M, all my friends and all you all reading this for riding this out with me. Whew. I have learned through countless hours of therapy, dozens of self-help books and a lifetime of personal work that monsters are more easily banished once they have a name. I became familiar with a new word and concept: ennui. And I am happy to say that I will NOT be becoming familiar with these three words: Zoloft, Paxil and Prozac.



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