At 13, I believed the Earth was flat. I mean, I saw globes and knew the Earth rotates on an axis, but in my head, it was simply the easiest way to display the map. Earth being a floating ball was just a depiction, and using a globe was the same method as showing how math works on a graph.
At length, I argued with my grade 8 teacher about the bullshit he attempted to teach. I was always ready to fight and offer a useless contradiction, and he seemed to think I was defying him. There was no intention to disrespect or be correct. My foundation of truth colluded with the process of hiding so much damage that it only existed through the nonsense and could not be negotiated.
You have been with me a while, so you know some of my history. While I am unraveling the truth of my life to heal the ways I recreated stories to cover the reality of what inevitably had no logic. Nobody told me the Earth was flat, but I believed many of the chaotic absurdities in my life were ordinary. I never knew what was true. I lived on a rocky foundation of faux stability of a complex family dynamic.
I believed the lies I was raised on, then repeated them myself.
I broke my own heart—so many times.
It hurts to mend the broken parts.
Thinking about last week's conversation about how to help build consent and work towards autonomy for all is some of my most important work. When I think about breaking open and revealing the truth, I remember the house of cards I built to support my lies. Presenting this stuff to myself and individuals with lots of privilege is an opportunity for change and growth, so folks don't have to end up in the deep end with all the mysteries and drudgery of confusion and heartache.
Let's look at loneliness. Conversations about mental health include healing the community and managing the awkwardness we feel when putting ourselves out there. What if recovery can also be playful, provocative, and even inciting? Is this exhausting, like an endless strive? Or will the curiosity keep you on your toes, shocked and captivated by the exciting company you keep in a room all alone? Because it finally feels like all those years of floundering around and blundering through the lies and breaking my heart by life were worth something. I have what I wish for - I once desired engagement with challenging ideas, encouraged in all its nuanced messiness — I always assume the urge to change will remain a constitutional dimension of the human spirit. Right?
It hurts to mend the broken parts.
MDMA has shown me the journey to compassion, forgiveness, peace, and joy. At fifty, I am learning to honestly identify and express my emotions, wants, and needs. The parts that showed up today want to be friends with kind and friendly people. I am slowly figuring out who those people are; frankly, I am scared to find them in pieces, just like me.
But today, what could be more generous than a window into your own heart?
Thank you, Dear Friend. There's so much here to explore.
Until next time….
Be safe, practice harm reduction strategies, and test your drugs! https://harmreduction.org
Flat Earth or not, I was not encouraged to sense-check ideas. It is also critical to look for ways to doubt ourselves or to disprove our theories rather than looking for evidence that proves them.
Individuals that can hide their suffering from themselves and others desire certainty and perfectibility. Neither exists in this world. However, Cults falsely promise that, and it is very human to seek them, perhaps with greater enthusiasm, especially if one has had early relational trauma (which is immensely common).
And when she returns to the prairies, Joni Mitchell says, "it is all part of me. I want to see it all. I feel very comfortable in all that openness. A flatlander knows what that means." I am also a flatlander. Watching the sun spanning the horizon was a beautiful part of my early life.
I love what you wrote and how you think. Carry on …. Janja xoxo
I am one of those friendly people in pieces just like you. I thin it's a nice way to be.