I know I am far from the illusory “perfect”. Mind you, in a way I think I am perfect, just like I think you are perfect. That is to say, I don’t think we are flawed or bad. I think we’re just human, a soul encased in an animal shell, and for what we are, we are as we should be; Pretty, dirty, silly, insightful, clumsy, selfish, curious, helpful, everything. Even as we improve, as we change, we are doing as we should.
We do change. I know because I have. I used to be outgoing. I was talkative. I felt happy and complete. I was helpful, loving, kind, tender, playfully sarcastic, righteous. I used to smile just to smile.
And it’s okay. I’ll change again. It took a long time for me to go this dark place. Years. It was the proverbial wave beating against a rock. I became quiet, withdrawn, sullen, anxious, irritable, bitter. I rarely smile. When a stranger taps me on the shoulder and I turn to see their face they look frightened, or worried, which I can only imagine what I look like to make them respond in such a way.
In time I will transform again. I hope I will be freer than I ever was, in ways I couldn’t fathom to be possible. I hope I will find my strength and peace. I hope I will heal, when I’m ready, slowly over time. Then one day I will look back and this will be just another memory. I can’t wait and I do believe it will happen, you see, because I can still hope.
I suppose I sound like a fool.
It’s natural to judge. I’ve read plenty of blogs/forums/comments of people abused, suffering. Why don’t they do better for themselves? Stand up? Make it stop. That’s how it works, right? The world is just. Someone is cruel, you call them on it and they stop. You get a free pass to leave, go anywhere. You’re safe. That’s real, right?
Well damn it, just think happy thoughts! Just get out! Wave your magic wand and whoosh yourself to a better place! Because that’s how life works, right?
I used to sing, very well. I loved opera most as a child. I cannot read a note but I have a natural ear. I spent 13 years singing in school. Every program that called for it, I was the lead. I was shy though, I didn’t like the attention. That’s the Aspergers in me. I refused the spotlight whenever I could but oh, how I loved to sing. It lit me up inside. It was my soul revealing itself.
At my childhood home I was taught not to sing. Like almost everything else, I was punished for it. It didn’t stop me from singing though, not completely.
Sometimes I would sing in the house and he would scream “turn off the god damn radio!” and I would reply that it wasn’t the radio, it was me.
“If that was you I’d be a god damn millionaire!”. “God damn” was, and remains, his favorite sentence enhancer.
When I was still quite small, in the warmer weather my father would go out to mow the lawn. We lived on the top of a mountain, 2 acres in the woods, a beautiful valley spread below presenting an ever changing work of living art just outside the windows. The house itself was a plain and modest ranch, which they had built. They originally purchased over 20 acres but a church moved in nearby and convinced them to give most of the land over. They foolishly did and later that church sold it all. Regardless, I grew up on a mountaintop and when my father would go out to mow I would dash downstairs with my little yellow and gray electric suitcase-style record player, open the back door so I could keep an audible watch on the mower running, plug in my player, put on a record, and sing my little heart out.
Now my voice is scratched. No doubt from all the screaming I’ve done over the years and lack of singing. I lost my range. It breaks my heart and I know that is my own damn fault.
I know what I could have been. I just didn’t know how to get there. I was wild but I was never brave.
I stood up for myself, defended myself, but I never took life altering risks.
I may have stood out from the crowd in many ways. Appearance alone I dressed like a so-called weirdo but that was expression. A form of art. I never did it for attention. I’d always forget when I went out the door that the world was filled with other cruel people who would treat me like I wasn’t of any value because of my hair and clothing. I’d forget people would act like thoughtless cruel morons. I would forgot how much bitter hatred people keep in their hearts and unload on anyone they please, just “because”.
Yet who am I to say? They judged me, mistreated me, and in turn I thought poorly of them. That was before the great shock came last winter. Before my life changed. Before I changed.
Now I know everyone is going through something. That if someone seems (or is) cruel it’s because they’re hurting, they’re suffering. That they need love and help, though I am in no state to give it myself, I am at least now aware. Really fully aware, not when it suits me, not in a hope-filled-meme of peace and love to post on your Facebook account, wishing for a “better” world-aware, but an actual practicing aware. Once in a while I slip up. I get irritated particularly after being subjected to hours of his non-step negativity. He’s only bringing out what’s inside me.
We are both suffering and destructive. The difference between us is the way we show our pain.