What People Might Think

Hello, friends!

Yesterday I wrote about my Poem a Day challenge and how I’m starting that again. Something I briefly touched on during that time is the importance of writing just to write, regardless of how awful it can possibly be. I had forgotten about that before I started working on that post. I’m glad I remembered it.

Part of this paralysis goes for blogging, as well – I have read so many articles that say that you have to write good posts 100% of the time or nobody will care about what you have to say, which is a ton of pressure for someone like me. I put a lot – too much – stock into what others think of me, and it’s really damaging at times because I sometimes sacrifice my own opinions and beliefs in favor of maintaining my reputation and not rocking the boat. I know I ask my husband and friends for help with making most of my decisions. This is frustrating for them because I’m 22, for crying out loud. My problem is that I’m afraid I’ll piss someone off if I don’t ask for help because I might do something they disapprove of, so it’s better to get clearance before I do something people might think is stupid.

The key phrase here is “people might think”. I am afraid of what people might think of me or my actions. I used to not be so afraid of this, but it has gotten worse over the years. I am afraid of messing up, so I don’t try to do things I don’t know how to automatically do. I fear the thoughts of others more than just about anything else on this Earth, and it’s taken me this long to figure it out. For someone who preaches the value of saying “screw the world, I’m gonna be me” a lot, I sure don’t take that to heart. I am afraid of people being angry or upset with me to the point where when somebody even remotely raises their voice at me, I start shutting down and it takes a great deal of effort to remain in the moment. It sometimes gets to the point where I just hide because I’m so afraid of annoying people. It’s not necessary, I know that. I know that those around me care even though I am annoying sometimes. I fear being seen as annoying almost as much as I fear disapproval or failure. These fears make me shut down more often than I care to admit.

Again, however, we can distill everything down to that one key phrase – what people might think – only let’s take it a step further. I often don’t realize that people don’t always react to things the way I fear or expect they will. Most of the time, my fears come from me blowing things way out of proportion. People are often so absorbed in their own lives and are in their own heads that they don’t even notice the thing I was afraid they would see. An example of this is wearing my favorite lipstick, a black matte. This lipstick makes me feel like myself more than any of my other lipsticks except for maybe my dark green colored one.  It matches how I feel at the moment. Some people have asked if I’m becoming a goth, others have said that they can’t take me seriously. Others love it. I love it. That’s what matters. Most people surely look at me and say to themselves, “oh, that human is wearing black lipstick” and then move on with their day. It fits me and is nothing to be embarrassed about or ashamed of. The same thing goes for when I make a mistake in public and I start to dwell on it. I have to tell myself that these people don’t know me and I will likely never see them again. This helps me laugh the incident off and feel better.

In the end, it’s important to realize that people make mistakes and that nobody is perfect. Like writing low-quality things or things that don’t really fit your niche, it’s important to get that experience and practice you wouldn’t get otherwise. Spending time in your craft is so important, even if you suck at first. You are loved, remember that.



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A Seat At the Table

I don’t know if I have exhausted the topic of happiness. I was doing some reading on writer’s block and the author thought it came down to fear – being afraid to write something and pushing through the fear, breaking it down.

I know I’m afraid of a few things. But in that there’s a light at the end of the tunnel in the form of a dream I had last night.

In this dream, I knew myself and knew how much I was worth as a human being. It was simple and profound as I saw all of the roads that opened up to me because of it. I was worth more than to just be a memory. I was worthy to be given a chance, to be heard, to be cherished and loved. In that dream, I didn’t see myself as a burden. I didn’t see myself as unlovable, I didn’t see myself as unworthy of…anything. I had a shot equal to anyone else to get what I wanted. I was not guaranteed what I desired, but the universe dealt me a fair hand. I was not worth more than other human beings, but I was not worth less. I was given a seat at the table, and I made my voice heard.

I had power. I wrote a few lines this morning:

I still do have this power. I am not made less because of how I see myself. I have an equal opportunity to receive happiness. It was an incredibly enlightening dream.

Fear holds me back a lot. All of this got started because I don’t often believe I have a chance to win any contests or be heard by anyone with a large social reach. I don’t quite see myself as likely or able to get that chance. Then something clicked
in my brain and I had the thought of, and pardon my French, “fuck it, I have a chance, as good as anyone’s. Let’s do it” as I was contemplating writing to someone about my music. So I did it, then had that dream.

I have heard a phrase over and over again that’s just now getting stuck in my head –

“What you seek is also seeking you.”
I’m not sure who said that, but I know it is real based off of what I have been seeing in my life as of late. I know nothing can come from nothing, so there must be something good about what I’m doing and I should honor that.

I wrote this a few nights ago as I was falling asleep. We are made of starstuff, as I believe Carl Sagan put it.  I believe it.

So it seems that the spot at the table is still open. It is up to me – and to you – to take it.

And to the person wondering what they are worth –

You, too are offered a seat at the table. Your worth is infinite. You have a voice. You have a heart that is special and your desires are valid. Speak up. You are loved. I want to hear what you have to say. Who knows who else you can touch with your words and your actions! You are also a star.

And to you, dear star, I say – shine.



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To Be Seen

I have a confession to make.

I don’t know how to write for myself. I write to be recognized, to be seen. I don’t know how to put my thoughts together in a way that’s coherent that sounds like me. I’m so used to writing to share. I fear that if I were to write for myself, all that would come out would be a scream. It’s very rare that I can unlock myself in my writing. I feel pressure both internal and external to write something good, to write something poetic, something that will change lives. It’s all gotta be good, meaningful, or it means nothing.

At least that’s how it feels, and feelings aren’t always facts. I do know that every time I write for myself – or try to – it comes out horribly sad and ends up hurting more than helping. Does that mean that something inside needs to be fixed? Does that mean that there’s some fear or sadness not addressed? I look back at my journals and I find that the later ones are full of fear and sadness and anger, and they make a bad situation worse because I’m dwelling on the past and being afraid of the future. It’s just bad. I go months feeling okay and wanting to write about happy things to something erupting inside of me and having to fight off armies of flashbacks and wanting to dive headlong into the dark again.

Last night was one of those nights. I tend to get very sad at around 3 PM every day, and things just built up inside me to the point where I started to shake and cry. Why was I crying? It felt like an aerosol can of sour memories burst inside of me. With that came shame, both for what happened and for not being over it when I should have let it go long ago.

I have heard that people are supposed to write clear and deep about what hurts, so I think I’m going to take that advice.

Something about the scene that popped into my head feels dirty and wrong. It was a memory of my ex and me. He was driven primarily by sex, I’ll be entirely honest, and I was a young, desperate Mormon girl. We had talked about threesomes for some time and I have a memory of when he came to Texas and we hung out by that car I used to drive and I remember there was a red haired girl we both thought was cute and we talked about “sharing” people like that. In the moment, it was okay. But in hindsight, it feels as sick as the sun felt that summer. I have a lot of shame surrounding that memory. This was one of the reasons I started to reconsider Mormonism – I had finally started to come to terms that I could be attracted to all people, not just men like the Mormon church encouraged, and once that mental bomb went off, there was no way to clean up the scattered contents. It was this ex of mine that helped me in a sick way to have this realization. When I tried to go back to church, the shame ate at me and I couldn’t reconcile the beliefs I had once loved and the shame I had with the things I now knew about myself. So I decided to ditch the shame and leave, unrepentant.

I hated myself for the longest time for letting that happen to me. The church had lessons on virtue (read: sexual purity until marriage) and I wanted to dodge every single one of those lessons from even before I officially joined. My mind didn’t fit the mold from the beginning, and there was so much shame I carried. I remember mentally eating myself alive even from the time I was small for being attracted to other genders. I remember mentally eating myself alive for having thoughts of sexual attraction at all. After all, they were wrong, right?

I am now realizing that I have spent a ton of time suppressing parts of who I am. I’m getting better at verbalizing what is going on inside of my brain and what I want and need. I am growing and learning and living and loving.

My gender and appearance falls under this category. I have spent so much time hiding and suppressing it. Last November was a turning point in that I found I could no longer ignore my identity. It was a pull unlike any other. I have pretended to be someone I’m not several times, and none of them ended up well and I always ended up in the same place. I was told over and over again that to identify with anything outside female wasn’t me. To those who said these things, who am I, then? Who am I now that you are not here to tell me who I am? The short answer is that you don’t get to tell me who I am. That’s my job. I am smart. I am kind. I am gifted. I am an empath. I am loved. I am a leader. I am a handsome human. I am a light. I am an example. I am a mentor. I am a student. I am a teacher. I am spiritual. I am imperfect. I fall down sometimes. But I am alive, thank God. I sing praise to life for the first time. It’s scary as hell.

Happiness is on my side. And it’s past 3 PM and I haven’t cried. Nobody gets to define me. I am not a reduction to how people see me.

I am alive, I am alive, I am alive, and I breathe like a newborn, screaming. It hurts to see light, but that is temporary. I no longer believe the lies that sadness told me.

Sadness is the liar, not the constant.

I will continue to speak on these topics until I can speak no more.

I will continue to tell myself that I am okay, and I will mean it. There should be no shame in this. The can may have exploded, but there is no need to clean it up. I may not recognize myself in the mirror yet, but I am here and I am seen. I am heard. So are you.



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It feels like I’ve got nothing left.

I’m almost ashamed to write today because there are other ways I can see myself using my time. I have too much time and I don’t want to find solutions today, I don’t want to make plans, I just want to sit in it. I don’t think this can be done, though, because there is stuff to get done and trying to do it on my own time isn’t fast enough. I know the world goes on, but the world is going on without me. I’m not sure if I even want to catch up.

I’m ashamed of myself for giving myself advice to take, doing my best to take it, and still backsliding. I wonder if I’m incapable of any kind of lasting change. I know you may say “look at what you have been doing here“, and you would be right, but I’m certain this is the inner bully wondering this and not allowing myself to see the changes I have made. It’s kind of a “you did this, but what about all of these other things you didn’t do today?” that makes me feel horrible. If I could do other things and blog, I might feel less gross about myself.

I felt better when I made a list breaking each big task into little ones. I’m going to do that again. It feels so stupid right now and resistance is high, but I find that calling someone I love and doing a chore at the same time helps, too, list or no list. It fulfills my social need along with getting the task snowball rolling. I’m able to call this one friend of mine and knock my chores out of the park at the same time. Same goes with my Nana. Nana and I can talk for hours.

This post is short, I know, but this is what I needed to say.

Until next post,