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Sunday, June 19, 2011


I spent the weekend at home. Parts of it were really nice. Parts of it were not.

If my parents make me feel awful every time I am around them, eventually I'm going to stop coming home. I wish they would just get that. But they don't.

I'm so tired of being guilted and shamed. It gets even harder, because when I feel like crap like that I can't tell if it is because of what they're doing, or if it is because this really is the wrong thing for me. But being with my boyfriend tonight felt wonderful. Entirely calm and peaceful.

I want so much to make peace with my parents, but they seem entirely keen on continually pounding me. I'm not a child! Release your iron grips on my wrists and let me stand on my own! And if I need to completely fall on my face, then let me!

I'm so sick of the anger and the hurt. I'm so tired of the inner conflict and the frustration. Why can't they let me heal? Why can't they let me become strong? My fear and submission to them binds me. I'm so tired of being chained.

I want freedom.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The One Who Holds, and the One Who is Held

The slump that began Sunday night got worse. Yesterday was a long and numbing day. I felt like I was being crushed, like the very air was pressing against my chest and against my soul. I found myself lying in bed and simply staring at the wall a couple of times. I felt awful, like my spirit was sick.

I went to the gym, but that didn't help. Later, my boyfriend asked what was up and I told him that I the past two days had been difficult. He was frustrated. He said it seemed like something always had to be wrong with me, and that he was frustrated that I still hadn't learned how to deal with such slumps. I told him it seemed that way to me as well, but it really was more like the same thing was still wrong. It just kept flaring up from time to time.

Later, he was at my place using my internet. I was lying on the bed, completely at a loss as to how to break free from the misery I felt. After a while my boyfriend got up, laid in bed next to me, and pulled me close to him. I have to say, he's getting pretty good. He knows that when I'm like that, what I need most is to be held.

I turned to look at him and said "Sometimes you need to remove the poison from the wound before you can stitch it up and start rehabilitating the leg."

He nodded, then said "But it seems more like you keep pouring more poison onto the wound."

"No," I said. "It's more like the poison keeps spreading, because it is never fully removed."

Then he understood. This problem with my parents has never been resolved, and because of that the pain and longing flares up from time to time. This was just a very extreme case.

But now that we were talking, I could get it out of my system. I talked about how lonely I felt, about how the walls I had put up to protect myself were now separating me from everyone else, and it was beginning to suffocate me. I told him how much I needed to feel part of a family again, how much I needed to be able to trust my family with my heart, but how difficult such a thing was.

I wept. Okay, more like I bawled. But the tears were cleansing tears. They were healing the hurt. He listened, and held me close. And when everything was finally done I could breathe again. I could feel again. I could smile again.

The experience reminded me of something my boyfriend and I talked about when we first started dating a year and a half ago. He was my first date with a guy, and my first boyfriend, and moving out into this world was very scary for me. Early on there was a night when it all was too much and I broke down. He put my head in his lap and stroked my hair, assuring me that it would all be alright. Then he said "See, this is the wonderful thing about our kind of relationship. Sometimes we can be the one who holds, and sometimes we can be the one who is held."

That has stuck with me ever since then. Now, perhaps I just don't understand the way straight relationships work, but it seems to me that there is a cultural expectation that men cannot be the one who is held. They have to be strong, and always be the protector. But with a relationship like mine, I can be the protector, but I can also be the protected. And there are few things a comforting as the strong and loving arms of my boyfriend when I'm feeling weak.

It is a beautiful thing. And it's in moments like last night that I know that what I feel for him is not evil. It reminds me of a beautiful verse, with which I'd like to end.

Love is patient and kind, it is never jealous, love is never boastful or conceited, it is never rude or selfish, it does not take offence, nor is it resentful. Love takes no pleasure in others’ sins but delights in the truth; it is always ready to excuse, to trust, to hope and to endure whatever comes.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Connection and the Kardashians

I'm tired today, but I need to write. It's been a long day, so the blog is going to be my therapy today.

This past week I was introduced to the TV show "Keeping Up with the Kardashians." To be quite honest, I am not a huge fan of reality TV, especially when it's a bunch of immature girls screaming and pulling hair for half an hour. So I wasn't expecting much from this, especially since as far as I knew, Kim Kardashian was just a brunette Paris Hilton. I was very wrong.

Yes, there is still some fighting. It's a family of five girls, it's bound to happen. But I found a depth there that I didn't expect. I realized that these girls weren't just nasty skanks. They had soft candy centers as well.

In the last episode I watched last night the mother, Kris Kardashian, is trying to come to terms with the death of her first husband five years previously. She had left him over ten years before he died, but she never stopped caring about him. Five years after he passed, she still bore the guilt of not being there for him when he got sick.

Her whole family still struggles with unresolved grief. And when Kris said she wanted to visit her first husband's grave, some of the daughters were supportive, and some were especially antagonistic. They had an argument, and Kris left. She visited the grave and had a very emotional moment there. But when she got back home the girls that had been harsh to her had a bouquet of flowers for her, telling her they were sorry. They embraced, and it was all very sweet.

This episode struck me, down in my soft candy center. As superficial as they sometimes were, these people still were very real. They hurt. They cried. They had fears and worries and doubts. But they also had love. And they were there for each other.

As the night ended last night I felt very alone. Since I began to deal with my sexuality ,and especially since my parents forced me out of the closet (something I still haven't blogged about. Sorry!), I have felt very shut off from the world. Being around my family, immediate or extended, I automatically put up walls to protect myself from rejection. At school I constantly put forward an image to hide the deeper parts of myself. And it's gotten to the point where I avoid being with people, just because I can't take the vulnerability.

The isolation is a defense mechanism, an attempt to hide from the pain. But it also causes pain. It locks me away, and keeps me from connecting with anyone else. And last night, it stung.

I tried to go to bed, but I couldn't sleep. I felt hurt and anger, especially toward my parents. I wanted to scream at them. I felt the urge to hurt them, as much as I feel hurt. But I know what that wound really needs is reconciliation. It needs the salve of love and healing.

But that in and of itself requires vulnerability. It requires risk. And that risk terrifies me. How can I trust these people with my innermost soul, when they've treated me like they have? I'm not ready, to be frank.

The intense longing I felt while watching the Kardashians makes it quite clear that I long for connection. I need to feel my heart touch another human being's. I need to love, and be loved unconditionally in return.

As inconclusive as it is, I don't have an answer yet. And as simple as it will likely end up being, I need to reach it on my own, in my own time.

I'm going to my parents' place this weekend. It's father's day. And maybe if I'm not ready to reconnect with my parents, it will be nice to be with my siblings. I have a feeling that they would be more universally loving if they knew everything. So I'll cling to their love for a bit, and see where that takes me.

It may be cheesy, but the old song is right: "All you need is love." But love is a risk that requires a leap of faith.