I have been doing this pivoting thing, where I address you, then I turn back to myself, and address her, and then once again, I address you, then me, then you and then, me again. I have been making my own head spin. I can’t keep going this way.
So I’m starting over again, as writers are wont to do with aspects of their writing, sometimes with entire bodies of their work. On this new page, in this new address, I shall address me first. All are welcome to listen, but I am speaking out loud to myself first.
Previously, in earlier seasons of life, I had been a groveler in relationships, a beggar, one who beseeches. Not in the traditional sense necessarily, I wasn’t asking for material things. But once upon a time I was someone who begged. To be liked, to be loved, to be accepted.
I did it by grinning and laughing when not much was funny. I wanted to appear docile, inviting, pliable, so as not to startle, that I might appear harmless, even when underneath it all, I knew how dangerous I really was. I have portrayed more excitement about a thing or person than I felt in my heart. I have forced cheerfulness in seasons and in moments. I did it for applause like a seal with a ball or a monkey with bananas. I did it until I got too tired to do it anymore.
I knew I was a time-bomb, waiting to be asked just one more favor, waiting to be rejected just one more time, waiting for the right hapless, derogatory sounding comment to land on my ears at the wrong hour, on the wrong day, on a day when I might be lacking sleep, and/or feeling famished, and/or missing private downtime for regrouping from the noisy fuckin world.
It’s not personal, it’s not you, it’s me. I swear.
I’m still finding myself here. I am amazed and pleased with what’s been found so far, what’s been dormant all these years, what I’ve unearthed from my own private heart of hearts.
And yet ….
When I think too much about the potential reading audience, I develop a tendency to hesitate, to falter, to measure my words, checking their weight and their timber. Ah, but when I write as if I am merely talking to myself? I sing like a bird at the tippy-top of her voice, running into my own embrace, sans the burdensome fear of judgment.
I trust me. I trust the love I have for me, knowing how sound and reliable it is, knowing, I won’t eventually stumble onto some fickle, unstable mood wherein I balk and take offense to me. It helps to know this, makes me feel nestled in softness, makes me feel safe to go deeper, to write harder, to write with more truth.
Here, I have revealed the claws and slime of demons which haunt me. Here, I have opened up about deepest fears. Here, I have confessed some shameful acts and wrong choices. Here, I have sobbed miserably and written the catalysts down. I chopped my locs and brought pictures here to show. I find pieces of my own bravery each time I write here.
Therefore, one might mistake my occasional appearances of courage for alligator skin. One could think I am mostly fearless, stomping through the world like a warrior. And while those things may be true, the opposite is also true and more often the case. Fear is my constant companion. I don’t care what the world says about the need for us to develop thicker skin. We are each so much more sincere and beautiful in our thin-skinned vulnerability.
So I am pivoting in my own direction, once again. It’s better this way. I bow to the lovely, Maria. She gets me 100 percent of the time. She knows the way my heart can swing like a wild pendulum, spurred by the yo-yoing of a paranoid and gorgeous mind.
Hello again, Lovely. Let’s delve a little further, shall we? Yes, let’s.