Solo

“Assume everyone will betray you, and you’ll never be disappointed.”
Solo: A Star Wars Story

Today is May the Fourth — affectionately known as Star Wars Day. So I’m obviously wearing my Millennium Falcom t-shirt and Star Wars: Episode IV is playing on my Blu-Ray player right now. I’ve loved Star Wars ever since I was a kid; maybe because, when I was a kid, life — and people — were so much simpler.

Needless to say, I am extremely excited for the upcoming newest installment of the Star Wars saga: Solo: A Star Wars Story, which chronicles the younger years of Han Solo (who is, incidentally, my favorite Star Wars character).

I can count on one hand the number of people I genuinely trust. Personally, I attribute that to half-paranoia and half-experience. But the fact of the matter is, while I still have a few great friends and wonderful family, my level of skepticism remains in the stratosphere. I simply can’t bring myself to trust very many people. Granted, just because I don’t hold full and unconditional trust for someone doesn’t mean I don’t like them or that I have something against them, or even that they’ve given me a reason to distrust them. It’s simply a defense mechanism.

Ever since I was burned by my Archenemy, I’ve had trust issues. Actually, part of it goes back farther than that — back to the summer of 1998.

But here’s something ironic: In 2012, when my former student told the police about our brief relationship back in 2010, I oddly did not feel betrayed. I suppose, in the back of my mind, I was merely awaiting that moment. So when it happened, I didn’t feel betrayed. I knew it was justice — I knew I was getting what I deserved.

But ever since I was released from prison, I have faced life alone — solo, if you will — with only a few notable exceptions. I simply assume that everyone in my life will eventually find a reason to despise me and eventually terminate our friendship. It’s happened countless times and it will continue to happen again and again. That’s just the status quo of my life, and it is a reality I have accepted.

But last night, things got weird.

I received a telephone call from an old buddy from college — someone whom I once numbered as one of my closest and dearest friends, but whom I’d perceived to have exited my life several years ago. Like most of my college friends, we hadn’t spoken in several years.

When my phone rang and I answered it, I was both skeptical and intrigued. Honestly, I’d never received such a phone call and did not know what to expect. But essentially, he expressed his desire to reestablish contact. He’d been upset about the fact that, after my arrest, I lied to him and said I was innocent (a lie which I perpetuated with many people, mainly because I was initially accused of rape, which was certainly a fallacy — but at some point, that’s simply splitting hairs; I broke the law). I gave him no excuse or justification for lying to him — if he had the integrity to call me and express his feelings, I felt that I owed him the integrity of not making up some sort of shitty excuse.

I live in a constant barrage of hateful comments being slung in my direction; it’s simply the sad fact of my reality. I’ve been told to stay away, go away, fuck off, and die by more people than I can count — many of whom I was once close friends. So when I received a call from an old friend saying the opposite, I honestly was not certain how to handle the conversation. I simply did my best to let him say what he needed to say, and it all worked out for the better.

Maybe — just maybe — I have one more friend now.

I still pretty much fly solo in my life, but I will never turn my back on someone who wants to be my friend again. Never.

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