Shameless Hussie #11

I WANT YOU TO HAVE AS MUCH LOVE AS YOU CAN GET:

She is a pixie, adept in her gentle laughter and so easily taken by the thrill of being alive. I interpret it as being open to the universe and take it one step further in my mind by comparing myself to her openness. I have always been jealous of her and it has gotten in the way of me being able to see myself and it has also gotten in the way of me being able to acknowledge the dark side of being a pixie and the moments where we all doubt our freedom and dwell in the masochistic splendor of negative thought spirals.

She finds me in the street typing poetry and has no problem celebrating my creative endeavors: lifting me up into her fantasy. I am not able to see the present because I am dwelling in my own shortcomings and feeling embarrassed about deciding to take such an extravagant voyage on the wings of heartbreak and mental breakdowns. She reminds me that we are having the time of our lives, that it is brave and magical to pursue alternative dreams. She has left the confines of a traditional living structure and lives out of a bus where she wants to create collaborative art pieces. She takes showers at 24 Hour Fitness and drives people around Los Angeles as an Uber driver. She says we are free and she talks in the same fantastical way she has always drawn me in. I am bowed down by her confidence, wondering why I can’t find that same boost; maybe I am balancing out her idealistic light.

She loves being in a poly relationship because she is able to explore as much as she wants. I am aghast at her revelry, coming out of a possessive open relationship where I felt heartbroken to find that my partner had been snuggling with somebody else that he was in love with for weeks without me knowing. I was ashamed by the fact that I didn’t want to share him with anybody else. I was afraid we would lose each other. I was afraid of losing him. She laughs, “Think about it. Would you want me to be your only friend?” and I smile and nod as though she is making so much sense, like that is the healthy way to think about relationships. 

But the truth is: I have a hard time sharing my friends too. Logically, I want everyone to have as much love as they can get. I am happy for all of the loves that are happening, but my heart won’t believe it when I hear about all of the fun people I love are having with other people. I get jealous and hurt. I am afraid that I am losing them and that they will no longer be interested in me. I wonder why they can’t have that fun with me. When people give me all of their attention and I feel like their only friend, I start to feel claustrophobic and resentful. It is too much pressure and it is boring because there is only shared experiences. So, I can only surmise that maybe I like feeling jealous, that maybe it is a natural response to loving someone tightly to your heart; and to take it even further, maybe some people like igniting my possessive fire by tantalizing me with their exploits.

“It’s my Gemini,” she says, “I like to play around with a lot of people.” I love that this is a part of her that she knows how to celebrate. It makes it easy to jump in and out of interacting with each other across multiple realities. I love that it is a part of me too, a part of me that I don’t always know how to celebrate. If I can be happy for myself for having a lot of different loves, then I can be excited for my loved ones with all of their loves. We need all of the different flavors because everyone teaches us something new about ourselves.

Shameless Hussie #10

I NEED MY SPIRIT BACK :

We have reconnected over lifetimes and are both in similar spaces in our lives; giving away all of our energy to toxic relationships and feeling the plug coming straight out of our spirit; slowly being sucked away by predators; unwilling to let us go; unwilling to unplug from our hearts.

“I used to be happy,” is our mantra, and a slow realization that we are addicted to being depended on and are slowly being killed by this drain.

“We are aware that we are being used and they are aware that they are using us,” she says, and I light up with the realization that I don’t need to convince my partner that he is good for me. I have been thinking that there is something I can do better to help him love himself; but, when he says, “I’m bad for you,” I could listen and take myself to the hills, frolic in the forest, and swim in the river until I’m clean.

Instead, I am left looking inward, feeling this tug on my heart, begging, “Let me go! Take your dick out of my heart!”

Shameless Hussie #9

PROTECT YOURSELF:

“We have had enough of ding dongs!” we say: a chorus of tired souls that have been through the fire too many times. 

We have only ourselves to take care of and can let go of souls that have hurt us in the past, so we don’t perpetuate the same patterns for the rest of eternity.

“I let it go too far,” she is telling me, reliving the traumatic relationships of her past because she can identify with my struggle, “I stopped caring about myself.”

I say, “I forgot how to love myself, to value my own perspective as important.”

“That’s why I live alone,” she tells me, “I like living alone.”

We are both empaths, taking in the energy of the world with our sensitive spirits. She gives me a flower essence to protect my feminine soul and the advice to take yarrow flower essence and carry around Obsidian to protect my spirit from being invaded by energy suckers. I am already wearing Tangerine Quartz and Lapis Lazuli around my neck to heal and protect myself psychically, and we give each other plenty of space because we know how it feels to be bombarded by somebody else’s neediness.

I have never thought of myself as an empath before this moment; always hating my sensitivity; thinking that it is my weakness; trying to hide my tears, because I saw them as a sign of not experiencing enough struggle to build up a thick enough skin.

“Sometimes I am overwhelmed by driving,” she said, “All of that anger and frustration of the drivers around me wears me down,” and this is coming from someone who has given birth twice; and raised two daughters; and moved all over the country; and who has dealt with psychologically and emotionally traumatic situations. 

I am emboldened by her love and attention. I feel stronger. I see my tears and my ability to feel so readily as gifts. They are my strength and it is my duty to listen to what they are saying to me. My body is communicating with me; my tears are the voice of my soul.

Shameless Hussie #8

THIS IS REAL:

Our teeth come out and we snarl because we have been hurt before. We have intimacy issues and if you are scared away by our fierceness, then you can’t handle the truth.

It is a wild dance of truth and vigor; if you can keep up, then maybe we will show you our belly and open up into soothing wonder. If not, then we have little use for your games.

There are things that I need from you and I can accept them because they are basic necessities. I need affection, love, food, rest, and a safe space to express myself freely. We have an awareness that we are both animals and need the same things. There is only this.

Sometimes I will make you feel uncomfortable  because I am following my own path and it looks different than yours, but our love acknowledges that this moment will pass and I do the same for you. I allow your annoyance to be what it is because it is real; and I can only trust real things that don’t pretend to be something that they’re not, things that will show their anger and take space from me because they aren’t trying to connect right now, things that will rub on me when they are looking for affection–clear signs of what is desired, and a truth I can trust because it is unwavering.

Shameless Hussie #7

                    I AM FLYING:  

I had been pushing myself to understand everything: how the desert can just keep going forever unless you figure out some way to let yourself stop and just observe its ruggedness; how poverty can lead to an unending source of need unless you voice your limits and make space for yourself; how ugliness exists everywhere and in everyone. 

I had been living inside of trauma by staying at a homeless shelter for refugees, seeing sadness turn into light – proof that you have to go through shit to rise up more powerful and fierce, and proof that it is also okay to let yourself relax in a safe space to enjoy your plumage. 

I had been surrounded by a community of people all helping each other, and felt simultaneously in awe and overwhelmed by my feelings – surrounded by strangers and attempting to speak a language that felt awkward in my mouth. 

I felt brave for trying to communicate but also felt relief when I was able to drive away. I don’t feel comfortable asserting boundaries and sometimes feel like I should give my life to others in need; like I can be the fire that helps them see their own light; like I can save them. My shoulders start shlumping and I stop feeling powerful. 

I met a mentor the morning after leaving the homeless shelter that reminded me to stand up straight and encouraged me to go to the natural hot springs where I would have my own room. I got to close the door and step down into the magical pond. 

I was safe in my own little space to feel my own feelings. At first, I held my body stiff until I remembered how to let go. 

I could only handle a few moments of heat before I had to walk back up to the landing to lay down on one of the beds provided there. I lay there feeling my heart pulsate through my whole body, calmly breathing my way back to peace, chugging water as I purged myself of fear and let go. I couldn’t hold on to all of my worries and fears and also calm my body down at the same time. I had to choose one or the other.

Each descent into hell was a reawakening of my soaring spirit, allowing me to remember a little more quickly how to be a devilish sprite, swishing my legs around, finding a way to sprint in place, leaping through the water and twirling, and letting my head fall back and relax into nothingness once more.

I had been taking care of other people for so long, I had forgotten what it was like to fly; weighed down by everyone else’s heavy souls, I had been trying to take on the emotional labor of entire communities.

I had been trying to hold all of this pain that wasn’t mine in my heart, hefting emotional backpacks over my shoulders and wondering why I felt so heavy.

Nothing matters more then your own happiness, but it is easy to forget that when you feel like the only place where you belong is on the ground, toiling away in garbage that isn’t yours (it belongs to everybody and nobody). 

Floating in water is a reminder of what lightness can feel like; a reminder of what it means to be in love.

Shameless Hussie #6

              I WANT TO BE SEEN

It was the end of a month long journey of heart ache and falling back in love with myself. I had finagled my way through all types of terrain and had met strangers that rejoiced at my way of being a human being. It had all led me to my grandma’s memorial service. She had always been a tyrannical presence in my life because she had never accepted my mom as a suitable partner for my dad; having attempted to dissuade the union of my parents. I had always felt great distance from her as a result of this awkwardness and a feeling of allegiance to my mom’s broken heart. 

Despite this ugly past, I had started getting to know her soul once she was beyond drama and had misplaced most of her marbles. I realized that she was just a person and that she wasn’t aware of all of the heart ache she had caused in my home growing up; she was no longer participating in the game. I felt genuine sadness for her passing as a person that had held the space of grandma in my mind. All of the stories of how she lived her life were revelations of my bloodline herstory; stories about how adventurous she was, how she loved being nude, her love of meeting new people, her healthy eating, her laughter, and the marvelous traits went on. There was no talk of her biting commentary of my mother, or the fact that we never really got to know each other. Death closes the show down and all that is left is perspectives on a person’s existence. 

Her death heralded for me an awareness of the fragmented nature of my family. When someone dies, there is no further room for discussion; there is no space to resolve a whole lifetime of distance. That distance is still living and breathing in my relationships with my siblings and it frightens me to think that we might never understand each other.

I marveled at the group of strangers milling around me at the soirée for her life and avoided talking to my sister and brother. I looked at all of the pictures displayed over the fireplace to commemorate her life and saw photographs of me and my grandma that I had never seen before, fragments of a childhood misremembered that brought tears to my eyes.

I stopped trying to associate with strangers, feeling plastic in my attempts at camaraderie and I walked outside to meditate with a tree. Crying is so much easier when I am by myself; I don’t have to worry about how my tears are effecting anyone else. 

I let myself sob as I stood up and grabbed ahold of the tree; I embraced it and let myself hang from its branches. I started to climb because I wanted to be sure that I could be alone, just me and this force of nature. I climbed higher and higher until I was perched on top of the world and I could let the tree hold me as I let the sobs wrack through my body. “This is the perfect thing to do,” I thought, as I said, “This is just so sad.”

I was crying for the loss of my family, even those still alive, maybe even especially for those still living and incapable of connecting with each other. 

I cried for pointless conversations when all I wanted to do was cry.

I cried because nobody else was crying and this whole world is in pain.

I cried because nobody cared that I was gone, because nobody knows me, because nobody could see me crying.

I cried because it felt so good to be held without judgement or interrogation, to be supported by the strength of lifetimes.

I cried because that is how I let go of the expectations of what a life is supposed to look like and of the stories that have kept me company for too long.

I felt invisible.

But before too long, I had to plop back down on the earth because I missed people.

I wanted to be seen as the feeler, the one who went out to the tree to feel. 

My tears are powerful.

Shameless Hussie #5

I hide in crowds of strangers to find myself, trying out different outfits and personas to see if I am capable of anything I desire, and I end up feeling alone and unloveable. I start to trust the strangers around me, or I compare myself to them at the very least, and I realize that there is something wrong with me because I don’t fit into their story. I forget that I don’t want to fit into their story; I forget that the whole point of this exercise was to put me in caddywompus and uncomfortable situations so that I could feel like a baby again! I forget that I am here to experience everything and that I chose this for myself.

I decided on each one of these paths somewhere along the way, even if some of them have now grown terrifying and sad because they didn’t work out like I wanted or don’t feel the way that I thought that they would. My friends that are willing to share their struggles with me admit to similar battles with expectations and disappointments; admitting that they are questioning their decision to have children, or wondering why nobody told them how hard it would be; admitting that they don’t know if this is how they are supposed to feel; opening up about how overwhelmed they are by the struggles of life; and I smile inside because I am not alone.

I am not the only one that feels overwhelmed by their own power in their life; this realization switches everything in my brain and I am able to laugh and see joy in all of my surroundings. We are screaming out to the forest that we don’t know and that we are all going to die, and isn’t that the most freeing realization in the world?

When you die, none of this will matter; so, we have to do what we want to do right now and that is what I am doing. I am traveling around and typing poetry on the street for strangers and getting off at whatever exit tickles my fancy; I am drawing pictures every day and writing every morning; and yet, there is still this voice in the back of my head that needs validation, that questions whether or not I am on the right path, a voice that doesn’t see my own affirmation as enough.

I try to explain everything to my friend and she just loves me; she is another part of my tribe that will accept me no matter what. She is living inside of her own triumphant shit storm; plus, nobody will ever be able to know my entire story because I have been my only witness through it all. I take her reminders of love and the strangled synchronicity that two ragged souls can rejoice about in each other’s company and I continue on my path; I know that I will come back to truth and love every time.