29 · non-binary (they/them) · neurodiverse · spoonie · queer femme · NSO & trainee zebra · polyamorous · burned-out activist · geek.

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tajasel: Katie, with a purple wig on. (Default)

Ze Frank - Why Trust Is Worth It
Words by Ze Frank, emphasis my own.
We talk about trust as something you build. As if it's a structure or a thing. But in that building there seems to be something about letting go. And what it affords us is a luxury that allows us to stop thinking, to stop worrying that someone won't catch us if we fall, to stop constantly scanning for inconsistencies, to stop wondering how people act when they're not in our presence. It allows us to relax a part of our minds so that we can focus on what's in front of us.

And that's why it's such a tragedy when it's broken.

A betrayal can make you think about all the other betrayals that are waiting for you, and things that you haven't thought of, and people you rely on. And you can feel yourself tightening up, bracing. And in the worst cases, you might resolve to trust no one.

But, that doesn't really work. Trust is your relationship to the unknown. What you can't control, and you can't control everything. And it's not all or none. It's a slow and steady practice of learning about the capacity of the world. And it's worth it, to keep trying, and it's not easy.


I almost imagine trust as these invisible hands that we stretch out into the world, looking for someone to hold on to, as we walk into the unknown future. […]

So who do you trust, and how can you grow it?

Well, that was a punch in the feels.
"You might resolve trust no one."

Yeah, and someone on the internet says that that doesn't really work, except what if it does? What if that's how some people have to stay safe?

We can't choose who we love, and we can't choose who falls in love with us. People tell me they're different, that they won't smash my heart into pieces like the last person, or the person before that. What if I'm tired of hearing promises, promises held with as little regard as my emotions? What if I don't want to trust anyone with my heart anymore? What if I've grown weary of seeing how people treat each other in this world, and I don't believe that trust offers the payback people say it does?

I just told a friend who's experiencing some similar thoughts that he's not alone, that he has friends who care, and that that's the important thing. That one day maybe he'll be happy with someone, maybe I will be too. That the two of us will probably never find happiness together, but I'm OK with that, as long as we're still friends as long as it feels right for us to be that way.

I said that there's no point in pining for relationships that have gone wrong, that instead we should try to learn from break-ups and bad relationships, and know that we won't always find the answers we're looking for, but unless we stop staring bleakly into the past, berating ourselves for being terrible people and unloveable monsters… unless we stop focusing on past failures, we won't ever find happiness, in ourselves or others.

I told him that he shouldn't beat himself up for loving people who didn't love him back, or for not loving those who loved him. That we can't choose who we love, and we can't choose who'll reciprocate.

I told him that all we can do is to look forwards and be the best people we can be. That if we focus on being as happy as we can within ourselves, then one day, people might come along and tell us they love us, and we might want to love them back. That if love doesn't follow the happiness, then it doesn't matter, because we will be happy in ourselves.

I pointed out that some people die alone, that I probably will, and I may never be OK with that, but I can at least try and be happy with who I am, and what I have, even if it's not everything I'd choose, if I had the choice.

Deep down, I believe everything I said just now, or I wouldn't have said a word of it. But who for?

I know that I'm happier recently than I've been for the best part of this year, and yet, there are these thoughts niggling at the back of my mind. What happens when my body gets old, and I have to slow down? Will there be anyone there to look back on years of adventures with, or will I sit alone, flicking through online photo albums at photos of people who have been and gone? What happens if I never again hear the words "I love you" from someone who I want to repeat them back to, from someone I want to grow old and decrepit with?

I get reminded that other people are worse off than me. I have no doubt about that, and I'm grateful for what I do have. But this world, our society, it isn't set up for people to be alone. We're supposed to trust, to be trusted. To fall in love, to be loved.

I get told that I'm still young, that I've got time, and maybe that's true, but by now, I'm far more used to saying "I love you" and hearing an affirmation that later turns out to be false: maybe they never meant it, maybe they did but realised they were wrong. It doesn't matter, because what it comes down to is that they never loved me, never could, never will.

They love other people, often people I know, but I was not loveable enough for them, I am not loveable enough now, and I may never be loveable enough anytime in the future. The only way I can find out if I can be loved is to trust… but what if that has already hurt me too much? What if I can't? What if trust is too tied up in heartbreak already?

Maybe trust is worth it… for other people.
Feb. 21st, 2013 11:13 am


tajasel: Katie, with a purple wig on. (Default)
This is heartbreaking, and yet beautiful.

I don't look back on school with terribly fond memories. Kids are mean, meaner than anyone can imagine, unless they've experienced it themselves. Teachers seem to forget how downright horrible they were when they were at school and few can see past the innocent faces with just a hint of a sly grin, few realise the jibes and cruel comments flying when their back is turned. I didn't have visible bruises, so they told me I was just too sensitive.

My school life was 12 years of constant reminders that I was not worth friendship or love because I was smart, because I wear glasses, because I wore a size 14, because I did my homework, because I worked hard. I was laughed at because, at 15, I had not yet had a boyfriend, and I was told I would never have a boyfriend, because I was ugly and nobody wanted girls who liked books more than people anyway.

It was depressing. There is no other word for it.

I helped in the library so that I didn't have to go outside at break and lunch. The librarians let me break the no food rule as long as I didn't tell anyone. I buried myself in the books, because I think a tiny part of me knew that nothing I could do would make the bullies like me, and that even if I could, I didn't want their friendship anyway.

By the time I left school, I'd made a couple of friends - other "misfits" - but we fell out of touch again when we moved onto other things, and the last I heard, one of them was working in Japan, and the other was raising wolves in Romania.

When I went to sixth form, the bullies did other things, but I still didn't know how to be friends with people, and that continued through three years of further education until I went to university. It was only when I started spending weekends in London during my first year that I really began to make friends, and yet I don't have a cover photo for Facebook of me and my peers laughing and throwing graduation caps into the air. Maybe next time.

I'm getting the hang of it now, the friendship thing, but I still wonder, sometimes, when I'm lying in bed with the arms of someone I love wrapped around me, just what I've done to deserve them, and, ten years after I left that wretched school, I still ask myself if I'm worth it, if I'm good enough, and if all these thoughts will ever just...

tajasel: Katie, with a purple wig on. (Default)
Mitch Benn has made a video in which he sings about the BBC in the style of the Daily Mail Song, and it makes me happy :)

tajasel: Katie, with a purple wig on. (Default)

I've been on this planet almost 23 years, and in that time, I've lived in five different towns and cities, and visited many more, and I just keep falling in love with places. I'm hopeless for it. It first happened in the Goyt Valley when I was six, sitting there and watching the river churn over the weir. As I grew older, Manchester claimed my heart, and then followed Pembrokeshire and the North Yorkshire coast, Oxford and Cambridge, London... London. I've had a secret crush on London for years, and then five months ago, I was given the chance to go anywhere I felt like, and I thought about it hard, but in the end, I knew there was only one choice. I have never felt quite so at home as I do here.

Sometimes it seems that the going is just too rough and things go wrong no matter what I do. Now and then it seems that life is just too much, but you've got the love I need to see me through.
tajasel: Katie, with a purple wig on. (Default)

Thoughts on my Bike )