because none of us is fucking up like we think we are, is what i'm trying to say

Monday, 26 January 2015

This Is The House That Made Me

Superlatively Rude

“We know everything there is to know about you,” she said. “And we’re still here.”


Isn’t that just the thing?

That they are still here.

That they were there when it was as bad as it ever was and have never left me since.

And oh god, was it bad. 

Not point-of-no-return bad, but… ugly.

Mentally, I was the worst I’d ever been when we met. Still on anti-depressants. Sleeping with many (many) men. Crass and a bit rude, and mostly because I was scared. I didn’t know how to ask for help. How to be vulnerable. How to get over the dark by cracking myself open just enough to let in some light.

They smashed me open and it was blinding.

We danced on tables as the sun came up and ran into the waves of the ocean as the sun went down, too. They laughed at my jokes (liberally, which is, of course, my favourite) and made me crease up in return. They ordered drinks and hugs, depending on the time of day and what the occasion called for. We read to each other on train station floors, argued over bed times and who was in charge.

We fell in love with each other, in those summers together, and in a way that was harder – more intense and complex and binding - than I’ve ever loved any man.

They saw every last, dreadful part of me, and decided they’d go all in anyway.

Because they knew. Knew that the hurt – my becoming – was as much a part of me as the throaty cackle to my joy, or how I’ll always check you’ve eaten enough today. That I’ll almost always be the first one to call it a night, or flirt with the waiter, or talk about chakras and saturn’s return and what the new moon means.

They believed in who I was not in spite of the pain I wore on my sleeve like a bold, deforming tattoo, but because of it. Because they saw that it would be my making.

They fucking committed to me.

And they laugh, now. Talk about “Laura circa ‘11” and the “summer with all that neon.” They tell strangers stories about watching me primp and fawn, rustling my feathers into their prettiest formation so that if only for the night, the week, the summer, I could have a warm body beside me. There was nothing they could say, nothing they could do, to stop me from seeking out that kind of solace. But they did not judge.

Well. Maybe they did a little.

If we’re all really honest.

But still they stayed.

They knew when I didn’t that I wasn’t a bad person for the ways I tried to kill my sadness.

They forgave me when I didn’t know how to forgive myself.

Accepted my whole when I tried to serve them pieces.

Nobody warns you about the amount of mourning in growth, they say. Well. They were there for the funeral, and my rebirth.

Two of them were here last week. In Bali. Visiting, from Hong Kong and Sydney, where they’ve ended up for now. Because we’re all travellers. Seekers. Adventurers. Together we climbed volcanoes in the dark to watch it get light and cycled through rice paddies and met ninth-generation medicine men. We did yoga in harnesses and sneaked into the pools of five star hotels. We talked and we talked and we talked, filling in the gaps of our stories – stories that still entwine and interlace, and often in the most surprising of places.

They show me, over and over again, what it is to commit. To make the effort and be present and a willing character in the journey of another. To both let yourself be loved, unconditionally, and love without borders right back.

For me, one is as hard as the other.

I came across this yesterday, right when I needed it – blue as I’ve been since they both went home:

"You are now at a crossroads. This is your opportunity to make the most important decision you will ever make. Forget your past. Who are you now? Who have you decided you really are now? Don't think about who you have been. Who are you now? Who have you decided to become? Make this decision consciously. Make it carefully. Make it powerfully."
 - Tony Robbins

We can’t write the story of who sticks around for us - that they chose me is a mystery I am forever grateful for. We can only ever be responsible for ourselves. But that means we can decide who we will show up for. Who we’ll stand by. Who we’ll stay for.

Who am I now? I am somebody who will commit, too. Who will stay. Who will weather the storms without bolting because circumstance changed. I will take it all as part of a whole, exactly as they taught me.

I do, guys.

Over and over again. I do.

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