how right it feels to discover being wrong about a person

Opening Line

It was the first time, and it wouldn’t be the last.

Jawline sharp as a sword, as had always seemed his words. His strong brow impressed an irking sense of power onto his face, even without a furrow, as if encasing his message in harshness before emitting it. Lips pursed, stiff with pride: an appropriate vessel for his apparently constant slander. It was the face of a man who seemed to believe himself superior – and the assertiveness to all his expressions ascertained that impression.

But now, had it been the lighting that changed? She perhaps had never paused to look for it, but in the almost-midnight light was noticing how those lips actually seemed quite soft, and those words they were procuring combined in speech that was less dictatorial in character than what she felt accustomed to from him. Words laden with sensual provocations as he half-whispered, half-barked his opinions. The presence of fierceness was still undeniable, but something – truly, had it been her or another factor? – provoked a shift in tone, at the very least to her ears and mind. To her, it suddenly seemed obvious that his intentions and heart were impregnated in a sort of innate goodness, that for whatever reason she had been immune to before.

The group sat in a circle near the western wall celebrating a sort of closing ceremony, as they each shared their reflections, sensations, and realizations. They were largely feeling in tune with one another; thought-provoking ideas were being shared and the interconnectedness was palpable. Thus they were mostly idle to the passers-by, a crowd comprised of orthodox ashkenazi – two of whom caused two moments of disruption when they instructed the pastor to move the group farther from their place of worship, as our backs turned toward the wall is an offense to them -, while others ambulated in hijabs, traditional African garb, kippas and tacky American clothes… There is a certain magic in the relative harmony with which life unfolds in a city so diverse in culture and religion, and with which the people found in Jerusalem at any given time receive communion and celebrate their faiths together (at least to the eye of this tourist).

Anyway: he spoke of an always wanting to be useful to others, and how he constantly asked himself what he could do that others may not think of for themselves but would benefit from. Such is the way in which he described his motive and purpose in life. It seemed so just and honorable. Words elude an adequate description because the shift was powerful and unexpectedly swift; only now she could start to recognize that there was a beauty to him warmer than his facade implied (as they do), richer and more alive than what had seemed cold as stone. He had more than one dimension – not a novel thought, but a common misconception nonetheless. And for the first time, she gulped, to pass the heartburn and butterflies.

She sat on the plane on the way home and marveled at how misleading our impressions of people may be, and how wonderful it is to be wrong about people. In order to optimize our social interactions we often rest on clichés, and fathom opinions of people based on insignificant moments of their existence, whereby it coincides that our attention is paid solely on their actions. We thus have just enough information to pass a judgment on the correctness of their choice or the error of their ways. How unjust that to this it boils down to, this is the basis of whether or not we like someone: whether or not we have seen them in action in a way that we agree with more often than in a way we don’t like.

In the midst of analyzing the new agreeable information she had on the softer side of this angular man, she felt thankful. She had seen him be, under different circumstances than she had before, and this had unveiled profound marvels in him, to her. She now returned with kinder facts and gentler moments from which to draw conclusions. For the first time since meeting him, she actively wanted there to be a next time, didn’t want there to be a last time.

Opening Line

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the phoenix, devolved

Burn

Burn your bridges, hide your provisions! All men are islands now.

Acrimonious proclamations of victory in solitude have convinced against solidarity.

Indiscriminate safeguarding of relationships is passé; why treasure whom others trash?

Everything is relative, but relativity. Relativity, the absolute truth.

Things depend, no longer just are. Dependency is weakness; let’s sever ties.

 

Advice when islanding:

Before you light that match, beware of the fire,

lest it be more than light, less than love;

lest it burn more than bridges.

Burn

i can feel myself

June 6, 2016

I can feel myself changing, I don’t know if it’s good or bad, but I can feel it. I’m becoming stronger, or at least a part of me is. When a new soul is born what do you feed it? How do I encourage its growth or ask for a hint of who it will make me once it is done developing? A new modulator between my selfless self and the self that cares and takes care of all the other selfs – that is what I hope to be creating within me. I need a referee to jolt between my protectress and my vulnerability.

July 1, 2016

There are indeed layer to my self, and I occasionally feel them to be somewhat distinct entities, for they each always carry a distinctive and logically “theirs” train of thought, and exercise the same kind of influence on myself consistently. I have sometimes tried to dwell on them and explore their boundaries; have them interact – with scarce but indeed existent success. It was bizarre. It has scared me in the past, made me play with the possibility of my maybe developing multiple personality disorder. I tend to shut the thought down as quickly as I can because lingering on it makes it feel a realer threat – albeit my mind has decided to entertain and taunt me with it, occasionally. I think I may be on the spectrum of hypochondria-Munchhausen’s syndrome – SIGH, if that’s not the most ironic sentence I’ve ever written; certainly it’s allegorical.

Regardless – I am trusting my new growth slowly but surely. I’m currently reading Victor Frankl’s “Man’s Search for Meaning” and he consistently repeats the phrase “daily and hourly” – whether about the frequency of the taunts and tortures they in the camps endured or the occurrence of opportunities for them to be good – so, I feel the analogy that I also find myself faced, daily and hourly, with decisions that regard my acceptance or defiance of this new soul (I’m hating calling it that but, sigh), quite fitting. I too, like the boy Frankl witnessed telling his friend he was dying and wished to die with honor and grace, aspire to face my sufferings with grace and honor, because I can decide whether or not this becomes true, regardless of my circumstances.

In this realization – that I do have the capability and responsibility, and am not a mere spectator or passenger while my train travels through life until it ends – I have found power and will, and started to find power of will. I do not want to be a sheep, herded by a select few of narcissists and sociopaths, sadists, and weak-souled power-hungry types; I do not want to be a sheep, forced to give up aspirations, goals, and expectations of his fate, because once lost the hope of a future, lost the will to live; I do not want to be a sheep, prone to develop a coating so thick it is not even wool anymore but somehow ice and stone, from spending too much time alone, or wanting to, for not being able to stand others’ sufferings, or even his own. No! I have a choice (of action, and thus of becoming of self) every moment I am aware of my humanity. I can live wherever I am put, no matter the hardships implicit in any given situation, just as we can live wherever we are born, which is chosen randomly, without our consent or knowledge, before even the existence of our conscious self. Thus, I must change, and become constantly conscious of this wish that my inner self needs to see fulfilled, and actively seek to satisfy it. I hope and think that will bring me much peace.

I am 22 and still don’t have my driving license yet, and the only reason truly is that I am lazy and have been reluctant to seriously propose myself the task of buckling down, studying for it, and learning to drive. But I always say (to somewhat pep myself up for it), “people dumber than me have gotten it, so why wouldn’t I be able to get it?” In a strange way this (probable) truth that I tell myself becomes a double-edged sword; what about those dumber people made them get their shit together (pardon my French) sooner than I? They have their license and I do not, ergo, they have something  (besides the little card with the picture that goes in your wallet, please understand me) that I do not. Extrapolated on another (more significant level), I feel this applies to what I was saying before. The same way dumber people have their license and I do not, “worse” people have gone through worse situations than I and have gotten through them with elegance and integrity. This gives me the strength to aim for that too, and the assuredness (or at least encouragement) that with my resources I should be able to do (at least) the same. Because it makes me less aware of my shortcomings, or at least makes me want to focus less on them, and not let them interfere so much with the parts of me that I know are good and that I want people to see; it makes me more aware of the parts of me that hurt when other people misinterpret me and look my goodness over, because those are the inner pillars of my self, still in molding: the core I strive to sow with morals, cultivate, and want to be proud of. We all have that feeling – we all feel righteous, and righteously so! I truly believe we are all good and we all have at least one thing in common that we feel deeply about: parents, spouses, children, a God, friends, a cause… We just often forget it. We must, daily and hourly, remember that, and refrain from judging or losing our patience and humility too soon.

I must continue these thoughts, but at a later time. I am bored of thinking and writing so much.

(^ said I before proofreading and editing this 12 times… lol hashtag perfectionist hashtag insecure lol bye for now for realz this time)

echo

when you walk into a church and you pray

you want to think

that your prayers undergo

the same amplification as soundwaves do

in there.

a shortcut to the messiah – such is the meaning of

church; prayer in church; manifesting wishes.

sometimes

when the pastor is speaking

the echo gets in the way

and you can’t understand anything:

babies babble and mamas coo,

every once in a while an amen.

thus, so:

focus, filter, synthesize, prioritize, discriminate

and the echo won’t perturb

but only amplify

(soundwaves and more).

another bad day

Today was another one of those bad days and if I had to explain why I wouldn’t really be able to come up with an answer; I wasn’t in touch or in tune with my subconscious enough to give a solid reason as to the cause or origin of my apathy but I simply was not feeling up to speaking to anybody or seeing anyone or doing anything. I don’t feel like existing today.

It’s another day where I don’t know what day of the week it is or what plans I would have made if I felt better because only one person contacted me wanting to see me and it’s my boyfriend, who feels guilty because yesterday he was going to surprise me and in the end he didn’t. He wanted to pick me up from class, but since it was a surprise and I had no idea of his intentions I got on the bus as per usual to go home and it left my campus before he had left his and so he couldn’t come and pick me up; I proposed meeting in Moncloa once I got there which was in 15 minutes time – which was the amount of time it would have taken him to arrive at my university in any case – and he declined, because since his original plan went awry it didn’t make sense to him or suit his fancy anymore to see me. That pissed me off, because I didn’t really have anything else in mind except going home and staying warm and cozy on my couch and watching the Gran Hermano gala, but when he called me and told me he wanted to come pick me up and asked me to wait for him at my university (although I was already on the bus at this point) it made me really happy and I definitely wanted to see him. It annoyed me that a stupid change of plans such that he couldn’t give me the surprise he wanted made him not want to see me at all. He later confessed he was stressed because he had had an argument with his sister, which I thanked him for because I honestly didn’t understand why we couldn’t simply meet later, but still I felt annoyed.

I suppose this could be the why of my bad mood.

Maybe it’s unfair to him that his fortuitous irritation – which was due to the fact that he had fought with someone other than me, and was unable to do something that would bring a smile to my face – caused me to spiral into a spell of impassivity, stillness, unresponsiveness, disinterest…

I wonder if I’m unfair with my expectations of people, and of my life, but I’m upset that the past five years of my life I cannot bring myself to describe with an adjective that isn’t synonymous with mediocre. I don’t think I’m particularly hard to please or high maintenance, but maybe I do ask for things that are different from what I have to offer. I’m recently realizing that there is a very strong disconnect between what I wish myself having or wanting and what I manifest in my life or what I act towards having.

The point is: today was another day I would completely erase from my life, another day that I will never remember, another day that confirmed my disgusting life and terrible mind.

good days and bad days

I’m thinking maybe it’s stupid to have good days and bad days because I think I maybe cause or choose them myself, because I’m fragile in the sense that when one thing in my day goes wrong – especially if it happens in the morning or on a day where I actually felt up to making plans – I just think fuck it all I won’t even bother trying to have a good day. Do I cause that because I’m stubborn or is it my depression?

To be honest I feel cheap using the diagnosis of depression as my “excuse” for things because of several reasons, one of them being that I haven’t as of yet received this diagnosis (at least not in this most recent bout of it) and another of them being that if I let myself believe I can always blame my problems or hardships on an illness then I won’t have a reason to change and overcome them. On the other hand I feel I’m doing myself a disservice if I don’t acknowledge that it is at the core of many of my problems. I also feel cynical having put “excuse” in parentheses; sometimes it’s not an excuse, it’s the actual factual explanation.

This is a rant, and a pretty useless one at that, and although I know for a fact that nobody reads my posts (because wordpress is a fame whore and she tells you how many godamn views your page has – and hooray! I have one view! And it’s mine!) and none of what I write ever helps or inspires or entertains or even reaches anyone, I cling to the hope that maybe someday someone will, but this is a text that nobody will appreciate (I am almost certain).

Anyway the point of this is that today I would say I had a bad day and I would also say I could have chosen to turn it around in some way, but I didn’t.

so much beauty

One night a few summers ago two of my dearest school friends came to visit me and we went out for a humble dinner and beers, during which my friend said one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever heard. She said, “there is so much beauty in the world, and so much of it is expressed in people.” It’s literally one of the few phrases I’ve heard in conversation in all my life that I remember verbatim, because I found it such a marvelous thought – or rather, observation, because it is absolutely true, and not just her subjective interpretation of the world. Human beings are fantastic. And yes, they are also evil. We are all beautiful, and we are all also ugly; such is the tragicomic nature of our human condition. As someone eons wiser and sooner than me once said, there is no light without dark, and this is true. But I want to focus on the light, on the good, because far too much emphasis is placed already on all things sad, bad, evil, and it is easy to forget the fact recollected in the also wise words of my friend: there is goodness in people.

And thus, since there is goodness in people, there is goodness in me. I must believe that. I do believe that. But another part of me, powerful, dark, and scary, taunts me with thoughts of the contrary, abuses me with tactics of shame and intimidation, makes me think I am not good – not good enough for my family or for my friends, whom I let down everyday; not good enough for love, which abandoned me once and will never come to me again; not good enough for my colleagues, who wouldn’t bet a cent on me; not good enough for myself, for my own acceptance, for my own love, for my own respect.

I know the darkness in me, of me; I know it all too well. I own my demons: they are me. I don’t have skeletons in my closet – I am the skeleton. I am the ghost of my past, because I never faced it, healed, moved past it. I have grown used to this negative side of my character so much that I have become that – and my goodness is not disappeared, for I still believe I have good values, I still believe I am a good person, I still want the best for those I care about, I still covet equality and justice for all, I still want to fight for those wronged and cheated and against the unfairness of life. But I suppose those have just become my ideas now, and not anymore my actions, not anymore what I demonstrate to others, what I represent and exemplify with leadership, because I have become my darkness.

It would be so much easier, I would feel so much better with myself, so much more at peace, if any one of two things were true: either I actually felt what I must be showing people I feel, or I actually acted according to the way I feel. It is so confusing to be how I am; so confusing that I, but only I, on my insides, see both sides of this coin, simultaneously: there is what I wish I did, what I wish I demonstrated, what I would like to do, and there is what I end up doing, demonstrating.

I wonder if others struggle with this dichotomy of self, or if they see their good and their bad as a continuum. I wonder if I’ve always been this way, I wonder why I’ve become this way. I wonder why, if I know what I want to do, and know what I want people to see from and think of me, and know what I want to demonstrate to people, and know how I should do things in order for them to align with the values and morals that I uphold so deeply and consider to be so important, then why do I feel like I am unable to do them, like I am unequipped to be consequent with these thoughts, why I consciously choose to refrain from acting upon them, why I, by omission of action, stand idly as I deliberately yet not malignantly hurt those around me. I wonder why I think of myself in some ways as an observer to my own life and actions. I wonder if other people give their bad so much thought, so much power. I wonder if they wonder so much.

And alas, I set about to write about the goodness in people, the beauty of humanity, and all I have done is focus on my dark.

I am sorry – but lately, that is all I see.

Because at the end of the day your goals and ideas and wants – they are ephemeral, and if you do not put in the effort to make them tangible, visible; if you do not wish them into action, materialize them; if you do not vocalize them, share them, make them known, make them felt… then they are irrelevant, then they are lost, then they are nothing but synapses in your own caged brain. And what a shame that is, because then this beauty that is in fact within you, within people, is nothing more than potential; then this beauty is not expressed, and then we can err on the side of mistrust, of thinking there is a lack of beauty in this world, then we can grow to believe that there is not so much good in this world. That is when we start to doubt that my friend’s beautiful observation is anything more than the wishful thinking of an illuminated, hopeful, innocent twenty-something; that is when we dismiss it as the ramblings of a bright-eyed, cliché, naive millennial; that is when we would be wrong.

And here, nestled in this crack in our collective thinking, this fact that we mistake for an absurdity, is where evil sets in, where blindness selective to all things pure and good originates. This is the most dangerous and forgotten truth of our lives.