I don’t often feel someone else grab my insides and says “No, THIS is how you feel.” I am adept at expressing myself.
Except lately, that hasn’t been the case.
There are many factors, but the three I’ve been able to isolate are fear, anxiety and loneliness.
The fear hit me in the face when someone told me that they were very glad to meet me in person, because they’d found my online “persona” to be “too much.” TMI, too over-sharey in general, other things along those lines.
My self-esteem being a newborn creature, I took that hit pretty hard. I felt compelled to defend, but I stood down. I wanted to kick them and say “Fucking persona?!That’s ME you’re dissing, you bastard!” but my fear of not being liked took over.
I was, at that time, still reeling from another emotional hit. I’d had someone tell me that they’d heard some very unpleasant talk about me behind my back. They refused to tell me who they heard this shit from, but advised me to change my approach on a key aspect of my life as to make sure that those people thought better of me.
I took that hit quietly, too. As a public person, you know people are gonna talk shit about you. Them’s the breaks. But I held close my heart, trying to defend it against this anonymous attack by my haters, carried directly into my heart by someone who had my ear.
I then had the most unpleasant experience of being treated rather poorly by someone in whom I’d been very interested as a potential play partner. They took some emotional liberties we’d not negotiated during what became an emotionally difficult scene – as a direct result of their psychological and spiritual “Pushing” into places they’d not been invited. They rounded that out with some really poor social skills, incredibly selfish behaviour, and then the non-apology of “Yeah, that’s crappy but that’s just how I am.” which felt like anther slap to the face.
I hadn’t realized how badly I was feeling kneecapped by these events, all hitting within a two-month time-span until I did that horrible reflective “Taking Stock of Your Year” thing that one does around the New Year. I looked back and felt sad, humiliated, and alone.
This was an awful feeling because I felt I was, somehow, being ungrateful for the delightful blessings I HAVE received this year.But this right now time is about purging the bad, so just accept on my word that things are actually pretty good in my life. I have friends who have my back in ways that are shocking to me. I am able to pursue a life I truly love. And I am loved.
Still, the loss of my relationship with The Dominant Guy burns. Despite the fact that it was absolutely the right thing to do, walking away hurt. But I breathed through it, felt it, redoubled my efforts to reach out. Despite the fact that it makes me dizzy to tell someone I like that I’d like to get to know them better, that I’d like to make room in my life for them, and wonder if they’d be willing to make room in their life for me, I forged ahead. Overcoming my own fears to share my desires. My brave attempts at connecting all unraveled, fell flat. People are busy, people have priorities that do not include me, and people just aren’t that into me. E-mails go unanswered, repeated offers of dates or time to spend are declined. Its not usually a good sign when someone you have a crush on spends most of your time with them talking about their other relationships, and then shines you on.
It wears down the heart. I am unable to give voice to this pain because now a part of me is terrified that my sharing it will seem like TMI. That someone won’t like me because…because I’m human. That the Haters will laugh and point with glee at my struggles, and that my pain only feeds their schadenfreude.
I have to be strong. Buck up. Never let them see you sweat. Hold off the invisible attacks from cowardly tongues.
I had no words. I was disappointed in myself; sad that the community I’ve spent so many years traversing, loving, dissecting, and celebrating was in fact, not feeling like my home.
Worried that yeah, I am too much and what can I do about that? How many more people were going to tell me I am too good to settle? Being alone and awesome is not my idea of a life fully lived.
And then, as it happens, someone else managed to wash the ashes from my mouth with their words.
I’m not a fan of those little motivational quotes things, but I saw a line that intrigued me:
you are terrifying
and strange and beautiful
something not everyone knows how to love.
- Warsan Shire
Something got quiet and listened. I went to find out who this writer was. I found her Tumblr, find this video, and found the whole poem. Go read it right now.
I don’t often have someone else speak what I need to hear. And I’m glad I did.
It is tempting for me to want to be accepted, comfortable, loved, and desired, all of these things and feel as though I must give something up in order to get that love. Attention, flesh, time and blood as currency. My own spirit and soul malleable as a precious metal to be bartered for a few sips of attention and love from someone who walks easily away from me, from people who have no real desire to have me in their lives, from those who are easily discouraged by a big personality masking a small, small girl.
I don’t feel any less sad now. But I feel all right about my sadness.