hope

When Heroes Become Villains

 

There’s a place some go. A place I’ve gone, and it’s a place of nightmares. Where you can’t trust the person to wake you up. What if the person who wakes you up from the dreams of monsters, turns out to be the monster themself?

You’ve seen the picture of innocence. Of child-like faith. Not just in God, or blue skies, but in family. Your grandfather is this smelly old guy who teaches you how to play an instrument and makes funny jokes. Your uncle is the greatest person in the world. Your other grandpa comes around and fixes what needs fixed. He throws you in the air and plays games. They are heroes. Superheroes who do no wrong.

And then one person changes that. Family has no meaning. The veil of innocence is gone and you see threats. If this one person, who swore to protect me, is capable of this, then what of them? And you start to see secrets. And secrets are scary. Because secrets live in the dark, and there are always more where those came from.

People get angry when you’re too frightened to be alone with them. As much as you’d love to say you trust them, you can’t, because you know they are just as capable of untold horrors. Family means nothing. “Love” loses it’s touch.

I don’t know if it’s something that can be changed. I’m certain I’m missing out on knowing some great people.  I wish I could trust, especially in family, and trust in “love.”

What I want in life is to fix the world, even if I can’t fix me. I want to see a few people hurt less because of something I know. Because of something I can say, or because of something I can do.

I don’t pray well. Its a thing forgotten often until I break and start shouting blubbering curses to the man upstairs. But when I do, I pray my daughter keeps her heroes. I pray this for every child. I pray this for the child I was.

I hope at some point I can see past the villains, and start seeing the heroes in those I should. Hope that I will see beyond possibilities and potential for hurt. Hope I can restore to some degree that faith in humanity, and maybe restore it in someone else too.

*****

If you’ve read my posts over the past month or two, you might have gathered that there’s a specific person in my mind when I write. If you read M’Lady and Her Jester you will know the background. This post is where she is in her words. She asked me to post this. I left it unedited. She said I could comment…

M’Lady,
Perhaps you will never quite learn to trust. *sigh* The cynical old b****rd in me says trusting “humanity” is for suckers. Humanity will always let you down but, there are rare humans that you can trust…and they will sometimes let you down, too. You are trying, though. You are searching for a way to find what was stolen from you. You are willing to face your fears. You are willing to accept that not every person is a person that hurt you. That you are willing, in spite of your fears and your past, gives me hope that you will succeed. It will take time. It will be hard.
M’Lady, you reached out to me. You took my trust and, however far from you, my love. You tried to run from those and, when it came to accept or reject, choose to accept, no matter how those scared you. I know you are not confident that you will ever be “healed” but, for now, on this part of our path, trust my confidence in you. There will be days, in some distant future, where fear will come back but, by then, you will know it for what it is and it won’t harm you.

I know it isn’t much but, here’s the hand of a friend to walk your path with you. *offers hand*

With love,
M’Lady’s Jester

Are You Effing Stupid?

Are you effing stupid?

Do you blame a bank for being robbed? If you don’t…

Do you really believe a rapist picked her because he thought she was a slut? Do you think that he saw her dressed that way and it made him want to rape her?…or is it because you want some excuse to blame her and not look into your own soul and peer at your own weaknesses?

One of the people I love has been subjected to this…and more…

The worst part of convincing yourself that she somehow deserved it is that by the repeating SHE  starts to believe it. She starts to think she’s in the wrong…That is the part of your bulls**t that really is disgusting. That you try to use your words to convince her that she earned RAPE.

You know that dispassionate part where I can try to step back, this isn’t it. Slut shaming subjects the victim to the crime over and over. It revictimizes. It degrades. It tears people down when they most need building up. Piss on the lot of you.

I’ll take HER side every effing time. I’ll defend her right to dress how she pleases, sleep with whoever she consents to and however often she desires…and if you blame her or attack her, I’ll laugh while she leaves you. I’ll stand with her and you may go f**k yourself…

 

When Words Fail…

…what do you say?

When “I wish I could take your hurt away” is inadequate?

When “you’ll be fine” rings hollow?

When silence doesn’t feel like an answer?

I don’t know how to fix things.

I can not undo what happened.

I can promise that the only thing that has changed between us is that, I care more for you because you are taking more of my emotional energy…

…and that is a gift freely given…

I do know that you have been told you are beautiful but, I don’t know if they were talking about what I am, your heart and soul. There is no part of you that is, to me, damaged. You were and always will be beautiful.

This is my hand. Take it for as long as you need.

Don’t Use Those Words Again, Please

Ok, I’m having one of those moments when I need to say something in public to random strangers…I need to make sure that, by saying in public what I would say in private, that my words are not so easily dismissed.

I have a friend that I’ve written a few blogs for or about. I have no need to lie to her or pander to her whims. There is zero monetary or personal gain for me from telling her things just to make her feel better and, besides, that isn’t me. I have told her things I am SURE she didn’t want to hear. So, when I compliment, it is the absolute truth…well, there is my own bias which could, perhaps, color my subjectivity…

So, let’s begin. Do you do things that concern me? Yes and we’ve talked about them at length so, there’s no need here. Are you perfect?

Are you perfect? Nope, but, not one single human is. Yes, you are able to be opinionated and angry at times…just like every other human on the planet…

Now, for the reason, I’m writing. You say things that I wish you wouldn’t. You describe yourself with words that make me sad. I’m not a sad person by nature so, when I am, there’s a good cause…

Lately, you have used the words “slut”, “whore”, “easy lay”, and “fat” as descriptions of yourself.

*sigh*

I don’t know how to convince you that you are not correct. You are just not correct.

There’s nothing wrong with enjoying sex. Period. That you do doesn’t make you an object. It makes you human. Those first three descriptors are words that make me think that you think of yourself as an object, an item to be used and discarded. You are not. End of story.

You are also not “fat” or any other negative. You do exercise. You swim, run, and row. You are in good physical shape. You might argue that you could be in better shape. So could everyone. I’m thin as a rail because of an accident of genetics, not because of anything I actively do.

Maybe you believe my rebuttals to your words or maybe this will make my point better…

*remember the part about no free compliments, remember those words when you read these*

You know I never had kids and you don’t fill that spot in my world, for two reasons. First, because being called “daughter” has bad connotations to you. Second, because you aren’t in that spot. You are a trusted and loved friend. Having said that, if you were my daughter, I couldn’t be prouder of you.

Do you realize what you’ve done?

You were smart enough and brave enough to leave an abusive relationship at a great cost to yourself. You have realized you made some mistakes and are taking steps to quit them forever. You see and confront your demons every day and push them farther back into their cage. You have not judged ME for what I’ve done, let me share my demons with you, and helped me face mine while dealing with your own. You have become, without intent, one of the people I trust…and you know how rarely I give that.

Those words that you use about yourself, please don’t. Those mistakes you think define you, you aren’t them. You are defined by your triumphs…not your defeats.

When the haters and the voices judge you, remember my words, not theirs…My words will tell you that you do have worth. They will say that the PERSON you are is valuable. That your soul is untarnished. That you are needed for something that isn’t tangible, your mind. That the world is a better place for having you in it. That, just by existing, you make me smile.

My words will tell you that you do have worth. They will say that the PERSON you are is valuable. That your soul is untarnished. That you are needed for something that isn’t tangible, your mind. That the world is a better place for having you in it. That, just by existing, you make me smile.

Like I said up there,those words you said about yourself,  please never use them again. You are not them. Not before, not now, not ever. I may not be objective but, you earned my subjective view.

I may not be objective but, you earned my subjective view. To me, you’re irreplaceable.

 

Grouchy Rainy Morning Musings

  1. Yeah, it’s me again. Not sure why, just here. I was thinking, always dangerous, and found some stuff in my head. I’ll probably forget some of them so, I’ll try to get the things out that need to be and hope for the best…
  2. The line between doing the right thing and over the cliff is this thin *holds up two fingers pressed together*. Don’t cross that line when you see it.
  3. I hate WalMart. I mean, really despise going in there.
  4. Your past doesn’t define you. Only your actions going forward.
  5. People are important. Said it before. Will again. It’s worth repeating. That doesn’t mean everybody is important to everyone but, someone is to every person. Find them but, be careful.
  6. *gratuitous bedroom comment* If you judge people by what they do in THEIR bedroom, when you’re not there and it isn’t your’s, then you open yourself to have your most private space judged…and no one can survive that test. Bluntly, who or how someone f**ks is none of your damn business unless they make it yours and, if they give you that trust, by telling you, don’t be a mistake they made.
  7. If your partner doesn’t make you laugh, you made a mistake because, that means they are either too stupid to make a joke or are too concerned with themselves to spend time on you.
  8. Partner is the operative word in 5. A relationship is a team sport. Both have to have the same goal. If one does and the other doesn’t. the former is a parasite and the latter is a host.
  9. You are what you eat *grins* Do you want to be tasty bacon or compost?
  10. We all have insecurities, failings, and weaknesses. Every human does. Find someone that doesn’t feed your insecurities, point out your failings, and pull you down when you’re weak.
  11. When someone trusts you, you have two choices, return it or run. Don’t be their mistake.
  12. I believe in love at first sight. I also believe in friends at first sight, It doesn’t happen often but, when it does, when someone accidentally “fits” like an old comfortable pair of jeans, cherish them as if you had known them for years and don’t question that it happened.
  13. Don’t wish your life away. It’s gone in an eye blink.
  14. Politicians suck. Yours are no better than mine. They ALL suck.
  15. There are hard words loyalty, duty, honor. They are worth trying to live up to.
  16. Have faith in something greater than yourself that is not human. Yeah, some kind of Divine. Doesn’t have to be mine but, ignoring that there are things we don’t understand and believing that we know everything means we believe we are God. We aren’t. The Universe is big and full of unexplained Infinities…
  17. Help someone. Just that.
  18. It’s ok not to be happy all the time.
  19. There are three words I NEVER use casually “love”, “hate”, and “friend”. If I say one of those words to you or about you, it has depth and meaning far beyond just letters on a page.
  20. Even bad days have moments when you can laugh.
  21. If you tell someone you’re going to do something, do it. If you had no intention of doing it, you shouldn’t have said anything.
  22. Backspace is your friend online. Not everyone needs to know you disagree.
  23. “No” is also an acceptable answer.
  24. Having people for friends  that are different from you is better than having ones that are the same. Sure, there need to be common values but, if they are the same then they are clones. Clones are boring. Life’s too short for boring friends.
  25. It’s ok to make mistakes. Repeating them and expecting them to not be mistakes the third or fourth time around isn’t.
  26. It’s ok to be angry. Some things are worth being angry about. It’s not a bad thing to have a temper, it has uses. Just don’t live there. Sadness is the same way.
  27. Lists get old and I’m forgetting stuff, so this is probably all for now *grins* I’m an old grouch but, that’s fine because I’m also a nice guy that likes to laugh and be sarcastic. You have two options dealing with that, take me as I am or walk away. Either is fine.
  28. Oh yeah, forgot and remembered. Don’t expect people to change for you. If you found them that way, it means they wouldn’t change for someone else, what makes you think you’re going to be any different?
  29. Last, love someone…and yourself…both are needed and both are had.

That’s enough for now. I think this list is for me. It’s also for someone else. It’s also for anyone that happens to read it and finds some musing that fits their need. Steal it at will or ignore the arrogance that thinks there’s something of worth in here. Your call.

…And Now a Word from Our Sponsor

Being me is an odd place for some values of that word. To say that I have “trust issues” puts it mildly. I compartmentalize people. I am willing to share bits of what I think as the situation demands. I can tell people about the events of my past but, not the “internal” stuff that goes along with them. I guard, with a passion bordering on paranoia, my emotions from the chance of hurt. I will readily push away anyone that I think might cause emotional distress, won’t even think twice about it. Poof, gone. I “run like hell” at the first sign of a chance that I might be coming close to allowing more than superficial trust.

*sigh*

It’s part of being me. Not the best part but, something that exists. Sure, I’m capable of affection and care but, not close enough that affection could be something greater.

So, imagine my surprise, and “distress”, lacking a better word, when earlier this week, someone I sort of knew reached out to me and I replied, just expecting them to vent and be done. I’m a good listener and keep secrets. *editorial, if you ask me not to tell something, I NEVER do* So, she asked if she could “rant” to me. I don’t know why she picked me, not sure she does. We have sort of talked. I knew some of her past. I’ve even blogged about some of it, in a guarded way, in the past when I was talking about how women are treated by men. I digress…

Then the unexpected happened, she started telling me stuff that she really doesn’t tell people. I went from random outsider to, “these are the ugly bits, the private bits, the fears, what cha gonna do with them?”…

And I freaked out. Completely out.Buggy. “Danger Will Robinson”. “RUN AWAY!” out.

I started to. run I mean. I went back into “survival mode”. Was in the process of convincing myself that survival was the best plan. That the old instincts that had served me so well, were the best instincts. That trust is “a fool’s game”. I really wanted to run. I didn’t want to allow the off chance that my fears were correct. I wanted to take the empathy I was feeling and get rid of it. I wanted to not allow the tiniest chance that I might be hurt. I wanted to be ENTIRELY selfish…

So, I didn’t do any of that.

I put some demons to bed by deciding, to consciously allow trust. By deciding to skip the middle bits and go straight to *word for the week* *smile thingie* storge. It’s the Greek word that means ” the love that friends feel for each other… Storge love is unconditional, accepts flaws or faults and ultimately drives you to forgive. It’s committed, sacrificial and makes you feel secure, comfortable and safe.”

What the hell? If I’m going to risk trust and hurt, why not risk everything. Remember those parts a few paragraphs ago about “trust issues”? If that’s hard, why not make the hardest step?…

And I freaked out…again…lather rinse repeat…a couple more times…

And, in the mean time, because of what she has shared, I am, with her permission, writing blogs that are solely about her, these two The Worth of a Soul and Redefining a Person thinking to myself, “what a s**t head you are that you would write to serve a purpose and then run away”. I had accepted her trust, shared my demons in return, and I STILL couldn’t decide to run or stay…and I found myself writing this one Feeding the Demons. In the last one, I made a public statement of commitment. Hard to retract that.

*****

It’s part of my own healing process. I was trying to help her because I am a nice guy…and slammed into my own baggage. That’s the odd thing. I may be helping her but, the reaching out that she started made me face my fears. She didn’t do it intentionally. I think that if she had realized the anguish it was going to cause she wouldn’t have. She can be many things but, cruel is not one. There was no intent to cause stress for me in her. My “public face” is confident and sarcastic. I can be a vocal person. I like to talk. I just don’t like to reveal much. *here doesn’t count. typing at a screen is talking to myself*

She uses the word “test”. We are both being tested in this case. Her’s is, will she decide I’m unneeded and leave when my usefulness is over?

Will she find herself thinking I require too much effort when she has no energy to spare? I wouldn’t blame her if she did.

Mine test  is different. It is,  if she does, how will I react? What if she does walk away? What if she doesn’t need my insecurities while dealing with her own “stuff” and does the smart thing, tell me to “eff off”? Will I say, “yeah, I was right, never trust anyone that hasn’t proven themselves”, “don’t become attached to friends because they ALWAYS let you down”? Or will I try again, knowing the risk?

In the end, only time will tell. Ask me in a year how it went. Ask me in 5 how she’s doing. Check back and see if some demons have finally been put to rest. Yeah, I’m still scared that I made a mistake but, I have to take the chance. I have to try to learn. I think that I have found a person that will not fail the test, I just hope that person is me.

Feeding the Demons

Dear Trinity,

I have some bad news. The demons don’t ever go away. Just when you think you have them beat, they remind you that they never left, just went underground. They let you become complacent while they were retrenching for a counter strike…

It doesn’t seem fair to me, at least I earned my demons. I invited them in, gave them a snack, and let them call my head their home. You didn’t. Yours were uninvited guests. I think that’s why I’m letting mine out, maybe if I give mine some space outside, there’s some room for you to kick some of yours out and a place for them to go. You see, I do have a few more years practice dealing with them. I won’t use the word “gladly” but, “willingly” seems to fit…

First some bad news. You will be sitting in a room full of people and feel alone. There will be times that, for no reason you can identify, you will panic. There will be days that nothing seems to make things any better and you just don’t like being you very much. What a kick in the head way to start, hunh? I have those days. You know that because I’ve come to you with them…

Here’s the deal. demons don’t have to define you. The only people that know they’re there are the one you see in the mirror…and the people you share them with. Choose wisely who you do share them with. Find someone that is willing to love you. *I was looking a word from Greek, the word storge is the one I want. It means ” the love that friends feel for each other… Storge love is unconditional, accepts flaws or faults and ultimately drives you to forgive. It’s committed, sacrificial and makes you feel secure, comfortable and safe.* Let those people in and be loved for yourself. Demons hate that. They can not stand the light of the love that the people that surround you bring…

Remember, though, the demons have  big lies.

They will tell you that you’re supposed to be happy all the time and when you’re not, they’ll be waiting. They’ll tell you it’s your fault that you aren’t. That’s a lie because not every day is happy. Stuff happens. Life happens…

They will tell you that you aren’t worthy. Just take my word for it, you are.

They will tell you that love is false and trust is a fools game. In time, you will learn both. You won’t trust everyone all the time and that’s fine. Some don’t deserve it. Love, on the other hand, the deep abiding love that comes with time and shared life, is ALWAYS worth the risk. I don’t mean that foolish “crush” that school girls have on movie stars but, the kind that looks at you and see’s “forever”. In those eyes, when you are old and gray, you will be the most beautiful woman on the planet. That day will come, when you find that…and the third happiest person for you will be me, because you and they will be the first two.

In time, the demons will start to fade. They won’t ever go away but, they will be less powerful…if you don’t feed them. You WILL  learn to keep them on their leash and, when they slip off, you will be able to put them back…and if you can’t, find me. I’ll be around to listen.

You got this. I’m neither your only friend, nor your best but, I believe in you. You are stronger than the demons. I think you will be stronger than I am…I just have more practice. They live in the past and yesterday is well and truly gone. You got this.

Love,

Miller

P.S. You know all of this. I just said it to remind you when you forget *grins*

Embrace

Embrace.

That word eliminates fear. It’s hard to be scared of a hug. The warmth of arms wrapped around you and the feel of another heart beat.

Sometimes a hug is just a thought. It’s a quiet prayer in the dark or a memory of a voice. It’s thinking, “that’s my friend and I love her”.

Hugs keep my monsters away.

Welcome to It…or Two Years and Counting…

I wish…

*sigh*

I know I’ve written this thought before but, I still wish I didn’t have to write this blog. I realize that I am an idealistic naive soul. There is no part of comparing religious bullying to rape that is enjoyable. Not a bit of having to tell my Pagan friends to stay in the “broom closet” to protect themselves is a goal that I ever expected to have. Berating Christians for complaining about alleged victimization toward them while they are earning the rewards of their attacks on other faiths is un-fun…

So, why? Why do I keep at a “project” that I expect to last my lifetime with zero chance of success? Because, for all the first person writing, it isn’t about me. Sure, it’s my perspective but, that’s just the style and point of view. In the very beginning, it was for two very dear people…and the communities they are parts of the Pagan and LBGT communities…and, yeah, for me and my conscience.

WordPress gave me the notification that a couple of days ago was the second anniversary of this blog. In that time, not counting drafts, there have been close to four hundred posts…and I don’t have a clue if any Christian has changed their view as a result. I have gained quite a bit of support from the groups I write for and, in its own way, that is important. It means that at least they are seeing that some few of us do not see them as the “enemy”.

Life is a work in progress. This blog is a continuing extension of that…

To the Heretics that read this, welcome.

To the non-Heretics, I was one of you. I do understand your fears, I just no longer share them. I have learned to not fear. I found out that our faith isn’t what’s under attack, our attitudes are. We get treated like the way we act. If we show love, it’s returned. On the other hand, if our face is intolerant and spiteful, we should expect to get slapped…

To the Pagans, not all of us hate or fear you. It truly sucks that you have been forced into hiding by us. If it is safe, you can change our world…and yours by coming out. We will probably not “get” your views but, we will love you anyway…at least some of us will. Please, please DO NOT assume that we are safe, though. Be careful. I can not say that enough. Your safety is more important than anything else. I know you know that. Still *sigh* I would rather me be a target for my view than you for your faith.

*****

One last, I said up there I hate writing this. That is not entirely correct. I hate the need for it. I love being able to do something to attempt to help make a change that I wish there was no need to make. To that end, we have started a Facebook page for the blog. It uses the same name as the title “Stones in the Middle of the Jordan”. It is an attempt to form some community and a place to come together. It isn’t about me, even though it shares the title with the blog…the blog really isn’t “about” me either as much as it is for y’all. If you do FB and want a way to reach out and discuss, please find us there. It is a “safe” space. It is very pointedly protective of faith, lack of faith, and LBGT’s…in other words, humans. *editorial, it is a brand new page and a work in progress. Please bear with us…or help out by joining and starting conversation*

 

*sigh*…again

*sigh*

I’ve read the Constitution. I can not find a single place where it grants us “freedom from being exposed to what we disagree with.” We have no right that is “freedom to repress.”

It really doesn’t make any difference if you dislike the idea that some people are LBGT. It doesn’t matter if you feel that you have some religious ground. “It’s uchy” is not an excuse. *editorial, that last was not intended as a judgement on my part. Sex is fun…and uchy* It doesn’t make any difference at all what excuse you use. You are not allowed to repress.

If we were allowed to repress because someone did something we dislike or did something we can not imagine ourselves doing, there are a bunch of things my opinionated, grumpy, middle-aged self would put before being LBGT. *editorial, willing stupidity and musical taste being high on the list* *grins* *I digress*

As many times as I’ve said it, I’ll try again. Who someone loves is their business, not your’s. What adults do in their bedroom is none of your business. That two women or two men love each other and are willing to make the commitment that marriage vows entail should be celebrated. If we grant protection to straight married couples, and we do, we should grant them to LBGT couples. Equal Protection has to protect equally. The Constitution is clear on that point.

I am a Texan and an American. I write about and for my home. We pretend that we are the moral high ground of the world. We pretend that we want ALL Americans to be treated with dignity and respect. Yet, what we really mean is that we want “Americans that think and act like I do” to be treated that way. That is not the same thing as actually protecting everyone.

*sigh*

We need to get over ourselves. Our defacto motto “E Pluribus Unum” should be celebrated. Being LBGT doesn’t make someone less a part of the “many” or the “one”. It just makes them human.

*editorial, too early in the morning for this train of thought to seem less disjointed than it does. It needed to be written and this is when I have time*