Reminders 2

I am allowed to exist
without having been loved.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Reminders

There is more to life than being loved.
I can envision a life without being loved.
I can envision surviving a life without being loved.
I can envision a fulfilling life without being loved.
I can envision a fulfilling life where I matter without being loved.
I can envision a fulfilling life where I matter with what I do .
I can envision a fulfilling life where I matter with what I do in the world.
I can envision a fulfilling life filled to the brim with things I am doing.
I can envision a fulfilling life filled to the brim with things I am doing exceptionally well.
I can envision a fulfilling life filled to the brim with things I am doing exceptionally well that leaves me exhausted at the end of every day.
I can envision a fulfilling life filled to the brim with things I am doing exceptionally well that leaves me exhausted at the end of every day so that I fall into the kind of sleep that feels earned. I can envision a fulfilling life filled to the brim  that leaves me with plans and things to do the next day and the day after that and the day after that and the day after that.

I can envision this and this will have to be enough for tonight.

Posted in Mental Health, Thoughts on Life | Leave a comment

To A From M

A,

I took a while before writing this. I’m not sure why I decided to, in the end. It’s not like I expect it’ll do anything. Zuko mentioned it might be good for me to write, but what does he know about anything, right? ha ha.

You never took him seriously, you know. Or Ty Lee. Or the Dai Li or Lo and Li.

Or me.

Well, that’s not totally true, is it? After all, there’s only a handful in the Fire Nation who you didn’t frighten with those… words you were always so good at spouting, always with an edge of lightning, warning people not to get too close.

There was me,
of course – I think that’s why you loved teasing me so much – I didn’t frighten easy, and you knew it – and you knew embarrassment – you knew I’d take embarrassment silently fuming under some veneer of indifference, but then you’d know all about embarrassment wouldn’t you?

Because while Zuko struggled with honour and shame, you struggled with glory and disgrace, and maybe that felt like a lesser path.

Maybe, that embarrassed you.

And then there was Ursa.
Calm and cool Ursa. Collected Ursa. Controlled Ursa.  Always her son’s mother, and her daughter’s…watchful keeper. Maybe the way she loved Zuko made you think love was power.

And then there was Ozai
who just saw himself in you- which is how you tend to see people: reflections of yourself, empty mirrors for you to see yourself in. And maybe, Ozai made you think power was love.

I know what bothers you more than the way Katara – that peasant! that Water Tribe child! (I can still hear you rage) – finally chained you:

Boiling Rock. You. Me. Ty lee – standing right beside you, until the very end.

You never saw Ty Lee coming at Boiling Rock. I wonder if you ever wonder why?
You asked me, that day “The thing I don’t understand is why? Why would you do it?”

But I guess you just don’t know people as well as you think you do.

Me, it was clear where I was standing – I took a stance, stood in front of you but Ty Lee…she was right beside you.  If it helps,  she surprised the hell out of me too. To be honest, she probably surprised herself, I think. You and me… it was a long time coming, but Ty Lee…god that must have burned at least a little bit.

She’s not faster than you.

She’s not smarter than you.

She’s not stronger than you.

And she was scared of you!

But she still got (under) you – because you never bothered trying to get her.
Really understand her.

When you found her at the circus,
did you give her the choice to join you,
or did you set her safety night on fire?

I guess you miscalculated.

After a point, if you really know yourself, it’s fear that runs out, not love.

And if you don’t…
well there’s a reason you broke all the mirrors in the Royal Palace, isn’t there?

M

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

On Community, Hope, Fear, and Responsibility

I get to ask people to meet my needs, and to be better to me.

I get to ask once, or twice, in good faith – in good faith because I deserve to trust people, to practice trusting people, to reach out humanly, humanely, without my guard up, to actually trust that people will honour my vulnerability – which means believing that they do honour it. that they are honouring it. That people are working with me and not against me – so I get to ask once, or twice, in good faith.

(And ok, I get to ask maybe three times, because we’re all human, and maybe once I get to ask once with some skepticism around if they’ll meet it or not)

And then, if it’s not working, if the balance isn’t there, I get to leave to tend to myself, my needs, and find people who will meet them. I get to leave with dignity, with self-esteem, with kindness. I get to leave knowing I tried, that there is strength in my vulnerability, a strength that isn’t the brittle nature of armor. Armor can be pierced – and inevitably *always* gets pierced. yes, always! There is no armour strong enough to shield anyone from life. I get to know the nature of my strength – an intimate strength that is woven through my core – a rooted strength, a strength that flows, that is, that heals from the inside.

I get to self reflect as well on how I could have done better by others – and how I could have met other people’s needs or been more honest about how I maybe couldn’t meet certain needs. I get to self reflect on how people tried to meet me, but couldn’t. I get to have compassion for them while I have compassion for myself.

I don’t get to stay and berate and barrage and harass in the name of accountability.

I don’t get to equate validation and support with uncritical agreement.

I don’t get to equate disagreement and differing perspectives- esp with other super marginalized people – with racism or sexism.

I do get to give super marginalized people, including myself, leeway – to be wrong, to be understanding, to allow for room to grow and heal.

I do get to have community – good close friends who know me – compassionately critique my coping mechanisms in my moments of pain, frustration, and deep hurt: “Hey, this looks like it’s harming you. Are you sure this is working? Hrm… can we try this way instead?” – and when they do, if I don’t like the response, I don’t get to always chalk up my dislike to abuse or dismissal of my feelings.

Love isn’t always agreement, so I don’t get to leverage language to equate critical, crucial, compassionate support with abuse.

In fact, I count on my community to call me in and call me out compassionately, and with love.

This is what community means to me. I’m not here to be right. I’m here to grow from where I am.

I hope you are too. And if you’re not here, I hope you get here. :)  I really do.

Because at the end of the day, I get to have hope.

<3

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment