Been a while hasn’t it?
How do I love? I’ve always described myself as loving widely not deeply. Eighteen years ago I said that I didn’t trust myself when I fell in love, that I couldn’t trust myself to think. I should read my old blog entries more often perhaps, or I’m claiming insight with hindsight that at twenty two I didn’t actually have. Mmm I’m not sure I think I had quite a lot of insight at twenty two, but I’m definite that I didn’t have the capacity to love that I do now. My emotions have grown in depth and scope whilst being constantly ground down and numbed.
My job is not good for me. Or perhaps the way in which I do my job is not good for me. I got into this line of work after being bought a drink by The Naiad… yeah that really should have told me something. The Naiad, who at uni I saw getting physically violent with her boyfriend but who had so much personal charm that I genuinely believed that they were both winding up each other. I have never seen said boyfriend be physically violent with any of his other girlfriends.
The Naiad, who I immediately left when she got weirdly possessive when I was nineteen, and spent a stupid year regretting leaving. Thank fuck I had a sense of who I wanted to be at nineteen.
The Naiad, who after I returned from Japan I helped her wife escape from the domestic abuse of. The Naiad who had such personal persuasiveness that I genuinely believed it had just been bad chemistry between them and this despite what I had seen six years earlier.
The Naiad, who approached me in a pub and asked me to look after her partner, who after ten years of knowing me assumed that I would just believe her no matter what I saw. I can’t fault them for that assumption.
And when I did see the abuse in that relationship? I did report it, and accepted when the report was denied by a vulnerable adult because isn’t that autonomy? And when I was at risk kept going to work because I knew how to do this. I know how to take a hit, I know how to deflect an abuser and I know how to share the location on my phone in case I don’t quite get it right this time… after all what other job would pay me for skills learnt by being beaten up, screamed at, and having suicidal ideation?
The skills I am employing in this job are survival skills for living with abusers. I am continually retraumatising myself and have been for twelve years because I was convinced they were the only marketable skills I had. My gods is it any wonder I have become numbed?
And when I found something I was skilled at and was about to jump out of this crashing plane? Fucking pandemic… which at least really used the suicidal ideation skills…
It was so hard to create anything, so hard to write, so progressively harder to do anything except lay on the sofa. Therapy has helped, this year, preparing to jump again, feeling again and more than I ever have in my life even before the numbness, but my partners in that endeavour had to jump before me and I still can’t go because I’ve got to make sure my chute isn’t going to tangle anyone else’s fall and there are still people I have responsibilities to on the damned plane.
How can I ever explain to The Fae Ref or Beautiful Lute what they have meant to me? That I fell for them first (ok technically Beautiful Lute first but The Fae Ref was fighting an uphill battle with my damaged psyche on that one). That I created with them first. That I got really caught up in the sheer freedom of their loving in a way that felt so me and so new that I don’t have any words for it?
I can love deeply as well as widely and I am thrown by this knowledge and sensation.