Two Sides of the Same Coin

Self-hate looks a lot like self-love.

And the only one who truly knows the difference…is…

(Scratch that)

The only ones who truly know the difference…are…all the ones around you who can feel what you feel.

MG

It’s Good to Be Back

(Disclaimer: If this post causes emotional discomfort, please confront your demons by heeding wise advice.)

I was spontaneous yesterday.

Now, for those of you who know me — it really does depend which era of me you know, now, doesn’t it?

Let’s try this again. For those of you who have known me in the past couple of years, maybe three, you’ll probably gasp when I, of all people, say “spontaneity”. And I know exactly why; I know the reasons for your surprise probably better than I let on, as I do with most things in life, to be honest.

So why was being spontaneous a big deal for me?

Because, mates, it’s good to be back.

You look at me and think, “but you didn’t go anywhere”. Physically no, but in the past two years I did go down a path I once promised myself to never venture. I promised myself I wouldn’t because of how many people I lost to it — the cancer of the mind, eating away at the soul, leaving behind a mere shell of a human body to remind us that yes, this living, breathing, entity is our responsibility.

So I left. I couldn’t leave physically — I had too many commitments out here in the city, a life I’ve spent a decade trying to build and am still dissatisfied with my efforts, knowing how far I’ve fallen when I look at how much I achieved once upon a time.

I couldn’t leave mentally — no, my brain is generally over stimulated due to intelligence, which, unfortunately for a lot of people, means I have no off-switch. I notice things. Then I understand concepts because I’ve seen it somewhere before, so I associate that and make a connection. That link tends to be more logical than emotional because I like being objective, studying the facts, understanding the patterns.

Logic is my comfort zone.

But I left, emotionally. It was one of the longest journeys I’ve ever taken — to be completely void of emotions and shut down, tuned out from the world around, still hearing details but feeling like everything is meaningless. Sometimes, this can be a good feeling, like if that emptiness is actually contentment and peace. If that emptiness is actually silence and solitude. What I felt though, was far from that.

At first.

It was a lonely emptiness, where not only did I feel like no one could relate to me, but that I hadn’t found a way to relate to myself. I was so far gone, so different, so…unfamiliar to myself. Most people think I had it done to me, that I was a victim of victimless crimes; that I was subject to whatever abuse had led me down that path. But it was my morbid curiosity, because I chose those situations knowing that I am entertained by aggression.

Aggressors find my amusement annoying. It adds fuel to the fire, pushes their limits; unable to laugh at themselves, the angry flip from aggression to full on abuse.

Of course it’s fun, it’s like that predictable explosion, a controlled avalanche.

And it’s what I do, I laugh in the face of rage. I laugh, because I understand anger, I know rage, I terrorized them a long time ago, and they are now subservient to my control. I don’t avoid it, but I generally don’t project it either. So yes, watching each and every single one of you flip out in vengeance does entertain me, because I remember what it was like to be immature.

I remember what it was like to be insecure.

But I also remember…what it’s like to be fearless in the face of insecurity.

My darlings, like I said, it’s good to be back. Oh, how I’ve missed you…

G.

Where Am I Now, They Ask

“Where are you?” they ask, then don’t stop to listen to the response. Well…

I am capable of anger. Rage, too, mind you. It is not an anger that reacts to the ordinary, mundane trivialities of social construct, such as religion, race, gender, and class. No, it is a genuine anger, not a projection. It is an underlying one, the undercurrents, which have found different mediums of release so that no more human collateral is necessary.

However, I am capable of anger. And pain. And rage.

Some call them demons, I call them artists; exploding paint into an array of beauty, of wonder in the making.

But more than anything, that anger comes from disappointment. Sweetheart, I’m disappointed. I know you are, too, but part of that springs from the knowledge that we both want the same thing and just not from each other. We want it from ourselves.

Yet, I have the audacity to write this to you, knowing that you’ll never read it –  I use audacity in the context of “courage”, not “entitlement”. I am that flux between your best dream and worst nightmare. It is my humanity I present to you, as sincerely as I know how.

You’re free to come and go as you wish, you always have been. But darling, you have become as apathetic to my presence as I am resilient to your absence.

So for once, I just wish you would meet me halfway. That said, I don’t know if I should be reaching or settling…but I’m present, somewhere in the middle. That’s me.

Balanced.

Present.

Always, the last one standing. The one they’ve left to hold up the fort.

And I do, using the pain and strength that came from shattered bones regrown. On cold days, the scars do burn a little, a reminder that there is still a fire within me. On hot days, the anxiety levels rise and my aggression is channeled into “midnight strolls” that turn into 20 kilometer strides around the city.

I have no choice but to be strong. My weaknesses are merely “assignments I have yet to complete.” The disappointment in me springs from always feeling incomplete, from the perfectionism that has been instilled in me through knowing that I can only ever improve. The disappointment in knowing that I have become who I aspired to be, and now need new aspirations so as not to become complacent in the results. There is no end to the learning process, only expansion and improvement.

But they say, moving forward sometimes means allowing the future to unravel and unfurl, the seeds that have been planted through time.

They always say “reap what we sow”, and then leave out the entire “growth” process. The longest part of the journey. They say it as if one can plant a bean and it magically sprouts into a beanstalk, instead of describing the journey of how it took to turn into a plant. So yes, we reap what we sow, but in between, there’s a whole ton of adventure and growth.

Those are the challenges: the long days in the sun, plowing through the soils, finding the right fertilizers, weeding out bad roots…and yet…those are the parts they all skip…and you ask why I’m disappointed.

I feel betrayed. Betrayed by the lies you didn’t mean to tell. Because the lies you tell yourselves, are the lies you tell me. And then expect me to swallow it like it’s not insulting. Expect me to stand there and take your projections of insecurity because I’m “strong enough” to ward them off, apparently.

Well, I’ll tell you, I’m not warding them off, darling. I let them sink it, taking the place of what used to be “respect”. Perhaps it’s not that respect needs to be earned, but that disrespect should be earned. I approached you with respect, the respect you hadn’t earned, but still expected. So I handed it to you, sampling it to see what you’d do.

You took it for granted, love. You took me for granted.

It’s not a line you’ve drawn between us, or a wall you’ve built between us, darling.

It is an abyss you’ve created, a canyon, where we’re both on the edge wondering who’d fall first.

I assure you, I’ve already taken that plunge. A long, long time ago. I’ve been down here a while now, exploring the caves and digging for diamonds.

But I’m not staying down here alone, so when the storm comes and floods this canyon into a river, I’m letting it carry me wherever it leads.

Because this, darling, is out of my control. And evidently, out of yours too.

I love you. And I’m sorry that loving you hurts this much, but I’m not sorry that hurting grows me this much.

So join me, or don’t, but know that I won’t be here forever…

MG

The Women in My Life

(True story, biographical.)

“How do you know you’re at peace?” I asked my mother once, in my teens. She told me “when your masculine and feminine stop fighting each other, when you stop fighting yourself, that’s when you’ll find peace.” So I asked, “which side should I be then? Which one wins?” My mother smiled and said “figure it out.”

I watched, trying ever so hard to understand how my mother could be so at peace despite everything she had been through as a mother. Then I looked at both her sisters, and realised they’re made of that same metal that makes my mother who she is. Naturally, it made sense to get to know my parents’ siblings better so that I could better understand them…

In the last two years, I’ve learned that mother’s younger sister has been doing remote work from home for almost as long as I’ve been alive! What my generation aspires to do, she’s already an expert. Last month, I discovered that mother’s older sister is one of the first women who ever  wore trousers as work attire in corporate London, back in the early 80’s. When she told me this, it hadn’t even occurred to me that there was a specific “skirt / dress only” dress code.

“We were supposed to only wear skirts to work,” my aunt told me, “but skirts can get very uncomfortable, you know. So one day I put on a pair of trousers because it was more comfortable. Next thing you know, other women start doing it too. Eventually, it just became accepted in our company (Ernst and Young).”

I reflected, and pondered: it stood to reason that the strength came from my grandma. With R20 (USD 1.50) in her pocket, my grandma moved the family of ten (five went ahead, I was told, the other five came later) to the city in the 1960s during the apartheid in South Africa. As a family, they never let the Apartheid become a factor hindering them from just living their lives. When survival is your main focus, and it slowly seeps into the “norm”, you learn to embrace the better parts of life.

My grandparents always opened their homes, always welcomed those in need. Though they didn’t have much, they gave what they could: love, shelter, and a hot cup of tea. They didn’t discriminate who came through the doors. They were loving, but they were tough.

To the kids, they were very disciplined, from what I was told. Swearing warranted washing your mouths out with soap, dishes had to be cleaned immediately after dinner. Beds had to be made and tucked in completely, without an angle sticking out anywhere (although, I was recently informed that bed-making was my great grandmother’s rule). Disciplined, but always out of love. They knew that as long as the kids were disciplined enough to later be self-disciplined, then they would be able to take care of themselves.

They were right. And so it continued in the family line. I see it in my mother, I see it in how she is with our family. I know it comes from her family, that strength, that unity, that togetherness. The way she always did her best to stay strong for all of us when we were all falling apart; when we’re at our worst, she’s always the one motivating us, holding us up, comforting us and letting us know that “it’s okay not to be okay, as long as you get up again when you’re ready.”

My mother is the strongest woman I have experienced. She taught me everything I know and more, at least by providing the platforms where I, too, could become self-disciplined and self-motivated. I am where I am (literally) because yes, she birthed me, but also because she is the one woman who has always, always been there for me, through thick and thin. The one who has lifted me when I was down, but humbled me when I was arrogant. The one who can fight me when I need it, and calm me down when I diverge.

I am strong because my mother is strong. She is strong because the women in her life are strong.

So how do I know that I am at peace?

Because my masculine energy and my feminine energy are no longer at war.

I am a person, a human. A human with strength, both inner and outer; a person with emotions, both aggressive and passive. A human with weaknesses, both external and internal; a person with flaws, both on the outside and on the inside. A human with motivation, both physical and emotional; a person with compassion, both expressed and empathised. I am not perfect, but I am balanced, and that’s all I’ve ever wanted to be.

Balanced, and equal.

Within myself.

Peace,
MG

(Re-blog from https://mikavelli.com/2017/03/09/the-women-in-my-life/ )

Larger Than Life

I wasn’t
looking to
change you.
Just your mind.

I wasn’t
looking to
take over
your world.
Just your thoughts.

I wasn’t
looking to
be apart
from
your world.

I’ve only ever wanted
to be
a part
of
(anything larger than life)
you.

~MG~

#imissyou

Vision

Sometimes it’s not about easing the way
It’s about readying it
~MG~

Vision
is not just about dreams or aspirations
Vision
is discernment and preparations
Vision
is not limited to eyesight
Vision
is seeing with the heart, soul, and mind
Vision
is not seeing flaws in everyone else
Vision
is seeing through one’s damaged self
Vision
is not focused on surface beauty
Vision
is breaking down the walls for clarity
Vision
is not excused supposition
Vision
is learning to destroy inhibitions
Vision
is not a fantasy nor memory
Vision
is embracing you in my reality.

 

MG

Write Truth with Love

“Write it with love,” I kept telling myself as I nervously tried to muster up the words. Writing from the heart was never hard until I realized how much there is to say, and yet so few words to convey. Perhaps that’s why I resort to poetry, it’s the direct link to the heart, to the unfiltered emotion, without the facade and masquerade of human conditioned behaviour. Socially appropriated responses, as they call it nowadays. Nonetheless, here I sit past sunset, wondering how to best express the wondrous and astounding experience I have been having since the day our eyes met. It seems so simple, when I pen it in rhyme, but why, oh why, do words evade when I want to say more than just…I love you…

Dear Darling,

I write this to you only hoping, praying, that you read this, at some point. Preferably soon would be nice. Our journey together is one of the most beautiful paths I’ve ever taken, especially because it’s with you. I’m not there physically, don’t quite consciously know why, yet somehow emotionally understand. Somehow, I am there, always, in the way that you need me to be, want me to be. I love you for that, for letting me love you. Remember that conversation we had, about “of the many ways to say I love you”? I remember that. I remember all our conversations.

But of all the ways to say “I love you”, you said it best. You said it in your words, in your actions, in your presence as well as in your silence. I only ever wanted to show you that, but became so tangled up in everything else that was going on; all the excitement, the transitions, the thrill and exhilaration of being in your company. I was careless, many times, I slipped up, and I made mistakes. I am sorry for that, truly, for the tears I’ve caused, for the pain from which I only ever wanted to shelter you. You’ve told me how happy you are now, how much you love yourself, how much you’ve grown and continue to grow. It’s like I’m seeing you see in yourself what I saw in you from the moment our eyes met. We lost and found each other amidst our chaos.

I know you find it hard to believe, almost impossible, but I knew from the start. There was something about you, when you sat opposite me, hearing the words come out of your mouth echoing my thoughts and personal reflections? Your words were/are a splittin’ image of my journey; it was uncanny. You had me hooked from the moment you let me get distracted by the tint in your eye. That flawless spark concealing worlds of words, galaxies of comets, stars falling and swirling around planets. Even writing this, I’m taken back to that universe of yours, teleporting through all of it…

Deep down, my love, I understand you, more than you realize. More than I show, sometimes. Emotions are not my forte, I did mention that, but I’m always learning. It’s me, darling, and you have taught me so much. Simply by being who you are, by being here with me, you have taught me lessons in life that I have only ever dreamed of learning. You have given me patience and self-discipline. Two lessons most around me have spend years trying to drill into me. But that’s all you, darling, you inspired me to breathe, to slow down in a way that I didn’t even realize I could. In a way that I very much needed.

You showed me a side of myself I had long since forgotten, a gentle compassion in me that you’d managed to silently resurrect.

My love, you are so much more to me than you realize. Your presence in my life, however you choose it to be, has been one of the reasons I’ve managed to shake of the cocoon that was jading my vision for the past few years. You, simply by showing me that you exist, have worked miracles in my life. It is for this reason that I want to thank you, for growing me, for pushing me into a new realm where you and I can coexist simultaneously while still physically living our human realities. I don’t know how you do it, and suppose a magician never reveals a secret.

I’m no magician, but I do have a secret. A secret that I would happily REveAL if you want.

Truthfully, darling, I hope you realize that it has always been you.

Just you.

What you and I have…this is beyond love. It’s something deeper. I know you know that. I love you, and so much more than just love…You are amazing. We are amazing. This journey; us.

Us…The story that writes itself…

M.G.