BFN Networks presents
SUPER </3: A Year of Noble Efforts
And your heart could find the words
Would we be for better, baby?
Would we be for worse?”
— The Gaslight Anthem, “She Loves You”
This is a story of compounded heartbreak.
It’s a 27-hour podcast involving a series of devastating break ups that took place over the course of a year. It was absolute hell to endure, difficult to recount in honest and unflinching detail and distressing to arrange and edit — so much so that what should have taken a few months at most to finish instead took nearly three years.
At times I would find any excuse I could to avoid working on this project. To subject myself to this raw account of loves lost would be to reopen wounds scarcely healed; to dredge up memories of avoidable mistakes, petty arguments, cruel barbs, hideous flashes of anger and tremendous suffering; to dare myself to spiral out into further bouts of frustration, guilt and depression. For weeks — sometimes months — on end I would do my best to keep this sorrowful and vicious — and occasionally endearing — confessional on the backburner. I would distract myself with other equally ambitious undertakings with the hope that one day I would be in a better place — a better headspace — to rein in this unwieldy tale of seemingly infinite heartache. By then I would be fortified by an improved outlook, proud accomplishments and more enduring and mindful partnerships.
But that never happened. If anything, things only got worse — life got so much worse — and as I found myself again and again and again thrust back into soul-crushing despondency, SUPER </3 continued to weigh heavily on my mind. Despite everything I had lost (and would continue to lose during the years that followed), for better or worse the podcast never lost its sense of urgency. And no matter how painful it was to revisit every slight and injustice (and, far worse, how poorly I responded in kind), I realized that this punishing tell-all was one of the few things in my life in which I had final say. When most everything else hinged on the willingness of others to be kind and communicative and present, SUPER </3 afforded me the opportunity to take control of my history, my language, my truth.
Overall, I put so much time, effort and emotion into the making of this podcast because I wanted something to show for all the time, effort and emotion wasted on increasingly untenable relationships. Because I never got the closure I needed, I could at least strive for finality. It’s not much of a consolation, but if I’m ever going to further distance myself from this long and ugly disengagement, the cherished photographs, the mixed bag of memories and now this deeply personal testimony will have to be enough.
Don’t worry if you’re not up to the task of listening. 27 hours is a commitment, and I am all too keenly aware of just how reluctant people are about those. Still, after the hardships I’ve endured regarding this podcast, my final — and possibly biggest — concern is not whether people will even choose to hear my side of things, but whether or not they might even be able and, more importantly, willing to understand and empathize with where I was coming from when all is said and done. Whether they might relate in such a way that they can recognize their own demons, their own blunders, their own misgivings, their own blind spots and, therefore, might be able to offer the compassion I’ve long sought for myself. Maybe if enough people could assure me that this — the relationships, the futile attempts at reconciliation, the pathetic pleas for consideration, the crippling depression, the relentless stream of tears shed for griefs long past yet still somehow so fresh — even the creation of this strange and difficult chronicle — wasn’t totally in vain, I could finally forgive myself for the chain of events described within this recording.
I figure it’s the least I can do seeing as I can’t ever seem to forget.
And maybe it doesn’t matter if I find forgiveness. Maybe it isn’t even worth remembering at this point. Maybe I’m just wasting everyone’s time. Honestly, I don’t know anymore.
But as far as I’m concerned, this story of compounded heartbreak needed to be told, even if only for the purpose of finally moving forward. Because there is no closure.
Because I have to let this go.
I’m trying, okay?
I need to let this go.
I fucking try every day.
Really, it’s a noble effort.
Sept. 20, 2014
Or download the podcast:
Podcast Feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/nobleefforts
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