The Pains Of Puberty At The Age Of Thirty-Eight

“Better late than never,” my Bubi always used to say but I think “better never than late,” sometimes. Going through puberty at the age of thirty-eight is not easy on a grown man- it takes a toll on his body. The chest hairs growing through my flesh are painful and sore. The chronic pulsation in my muscles are driving me mad. When I was young I always wondered where my puberty was. My friends were growing hair on their chest and legs (and other regions) and their voices were changing like string sections in an orchestra. I instead maintained my childish ways and never had the satisfaction of knowing that I was growing into a man. Girls were attracted to me because I reminded them of a little boy. When most of my friends started to shave and get laid I was looking in the mirror at a bare, virginal face wondering what went wrong. Even though the discovery of a few miniscule hairs on my back helped me to feel more apart of the “growing trend”  little did I know then that I would have to wait until I was thirty-eight to become a full-grown man.

It started a few months ago with a scratch in my voice that I thought was a symptom of a coming cold. While in the middle of a conversation my voice crescendoed into a high-pitched squeak that made me sound like a car with bad brakes. This was embarrassing because I am man and most of my conversations are serious. When my voice squeaks I know I appear less confident about the things I say. People question me, think I am insecure and wonder if I know what I am talking about. I have to squeakely assure them that I do. The squeaks of puberty are manageable because realistically I am the first to admit that I know very little about anything. What is most difficult about puberty is the intensity of feeling that seems to be flowing around just beneath my soul.

To deal with this intensity of feeling I have been doing a host of unreasonable things. I run my bike into piles of leaves jeopardizing my life. I knock on strangers doors and then run away at high speeds. I play in the mud trying to get as dirty as I can and I climb trees so that I can feel on top of the world. The longing, the expectation and fear of disappointment that comes along with puberty is so intense that at times I feel like I am going to lose it completely. I cry, scream at walls and beg for attention from my wife by wearing cologne (something I never did before) and by acting sad and wounded. I wear tighter pants than I ever have in my life and I notice that the music I am listening to seems to embody a teenage angst. One of the advantages of going through puberty as an adult rather than as a young man is that now I have some control over my impulses, since I have learned to respond rather than to react.

In the adult onset of my puberty, I have been inspired to find out “who I am” behind the thick prison walls that have been erected all around me. I always believed the Descartian lie that says “I think, therefore I am.” I have spent my life thinking but have little clue about who I really am. Now that I am finally starting to grow the chest hairs, the feeling muscles and the self-approval that has eluded me until this date- I am having faith that I can break free from the prison walls that have impeded my emotional growth for so long. I now can see that becoming a man means that I need to reclaim the lost self that wandered off somewhere in childhood, so that I can live a life that is healthy and free from the repressed dysfunctional emotional stains that have been stuck on me for so long.

The squeaky voice, the chest hairs, the intensity of feeling and the persistent erection (that I need not go into) are all aspects of puberty that every young man must face. I imagine it is easier to go through this when one is young enough to not really understand what is going on. When young, a person has the reckless abandon, the naive idealism and the health to helplessly become a victim of biological impulses. They can follow these impulses and desires wherever they may lead, without worry for repercussions. But after three decades of feeling the harsh side effects of painful repercussions, my puberty has to be navigated with the skill of a master. So I am being judicious, wise and allowing myself to feel every hair that bursts onto my chest and every emotion that inflames my mind and soul- without losing myself in the pain. I could be mad that I am finally experiencing puberty at the unfair age of thirty-eight. Instead, I am riding my bike more and turning my attention to the fact that something deep in me is finally being expressed that was not ready to come out before. Even though this is hard and I envy those who go through puberty when young, finally I can cut the hairless umbilical cord of my youth, come out from behind the prison walls and inhabit the space of a fully realized man with a chest filled with hair.

The Man Who Fell On Earth.

I must find a certain way out. To open up a sub atomic black hole that will absorb the planet earth and reveal a map for me to find my way back home. If I could create a thinly little pint size device that could bathe the earth in sub atomic particles maybe I could not only reveal the great secrets of your universe- the fabric of your cosmos, but I could also be back in the comforts of my bed by midnight. We live in such an elegant universe, but space and time are constantly trying to take me over- to envelope me in a three dimensional bubble. Newton, Einstein and Theoretical Physics make me feel like my perceptions are constantly changing, imbalanced. I like knowing that there are definite answers to things and my facility for common sense is getting blacked out and all hell is braking loose. There is no longer an absolute space but instead everything is moving at different rates, the universality of space is shattered and a shard of time has been stuck in my side. I feel like I am a trapped animal slowly bleeding to death.

I feel as if I am not moving relative to everyone else in time and space. There are paradoxes every where because the concept of time and space is not absolute. These paradoxes puzzle me. They restrict my breathing and make me anxious. I look at a situation and I am confused by the solutions which are no longer relative. It is like comparing apples and oranges that are separated from one another in space. Where did the symmetry go? Why have I lost my balance? How can I turn time around and create a universe where less time has elapsed? A universe in which I am younger and back in the comforts of my home? I am lost in time and can not comprehend why time moves forward. Dizziness sets in and I become perplexed. My legs grow weak and my mind scrambles to find answers to questions. I am depressed and everything becomes strange. This morning I saw a broken egg jump out of the pan and back into its egg shell! On earth we are familiar with events going one way in time and not the other- but lately I have been watching things happen in reverse order. No longer is there a symmetry in time. Things are not supposed to happen like this on earth and in my head.

The basic laws of Physics are beginning to puzzle me. For so many years I studied them and was certain that I understood. Now I must look all the way back to the beginning, the big bang- which imprinted a direction on time- a disorder that I can not seem to fix. I have often been told that a drive to disorder is why events always go one direction in time and not in reverse. Now, I and every one else I see and love is being driven crazy by this reverse order. Life on earth is in a state of degeneration and I am desperately searching for a way out.

Our current understanding of the world is a result of misread mathematics. Entropy and disorder always increases into the future- no matter how hard you work, how much money you make or how healthy you are. This is fact…we are all moving towards eventual decay. However, why is it that every time I cup an egg in my hand I feel like I am reflecting upon a feature of the entire universe. Electrons are dancing in my chest, I can feel the uncertainty of everything that humans confuse as matter. I know that there are features of the micro-world that I will never know with absolute certainty. When I am lying in bed I try and see inside of darkness but my attempts are usually futile. I ache with this need to know yet I have to make peace with the knowledge that I may never know where an electron is or how fast it is moving. The definite value of these particles I will always be uncertain about because in this earth bound reality, everything is an illusion. Including a way out.

When I look at my cat I can notice that my cat exists both simultaneously as alive and dead. I am troubled by this because the cat is neither here nor there. I can not find my cat in one stable environment. This is another earth bound paradox without resolution. The subtleties allude humans. Someplace in my motel room there is a wave function in which there are many possible worlds coexisting simultaneously. The cat is both half alive and half dead in each of these spaces. All around me there are these multiple universes in which in one universe the cat is alive and in the other universe the cat is dead!! Such an infinite number of universes inside of a Motel Six room. Sometimes I wonder if I am going to wake up and realize that I never existed in this world, that one quantum event will separate me from a world in which I existed. Instead I will be living in another universe, right beside this universe, in which I, Elvis Presley and my dead cat are still alive.

If I can unite The Theory Of The Very Big with The Theory Of The Very Small than I can determine exactly where things are in all these parallel universes. Maybe I can make electrons jitter and create a liberating hole that will free me from this universe. If the finest ingredient in the universe is a small filament of energy with a non zero size, than maybe I can find this ingredient and create a device that will allow me to measure everything in time and space. But for know I can not measure dimensions beyond length, width and height. I feel as if my consciousness is shrinking. Like I had an erection which is now going limp.

I am always searching for answers. Without these answers I know that I will be trapped here for an eternity. I spend my days in a desperate search. A frantic search. Like an obsessive compulsive searching for particles of dust in the carpet. Is it possible that the extra dimensions are so tiny that there is very little room for me to crawl into them- because I am to big? Or is it because of the way that I see? Is it possible that light is trapped in our third dimension and because it is trapped the light can not access other dimensions? Maybe gravity is my only hope. Maybe I can find a way for gravity to move into these other dimensions and let me know that they are there. The dispersion of gravity will create an inverse cube that will allow me to see into the subatomic level. I will be able to make gravity spread out and disperse. When gravity disperses into other dimensions, it will be like unlocking a door. I will be able to put on my finest suit and walk through this opened door- a free man, no longer confined by my job, time and space.