April 2018
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welcome to the new old real me.

I have so much to say about Anika's visit... but what's really on my mind right now is something inspired by her but not about her.

I have been growing less and less interested in LJing, even thinking of dumping it entirely, and didn't realize why. It was becoming another shell, another way of being 'perfect' -- too much about what other people would want to read and no longer about me being myself. Too much about methods and rituals -- organizing how I would post, how I would comment, and then hating the methods and so avoiding the whole thing entirely. I have a war within myself between my old, method-bound, organize-and-follow-directions self, and my true self, who prefers to live by instinct, following the callings within and ignoring the pressure from without. Sometimes I get confused as to which is the true self.

Being around Anika, my soul-twin, and seeing how she lives, moves, believes, reacts, taught me a lot about myself. We are both passionately honest, but neither of us is completely open. I'm not as open as I thought I was, and she's not as open as I thought she was. I had completely repressed my intense, overwhelming desire for a 'soulfriend' -- a relationship so much deeper than friendship as most people understand it -- to the point that I had forgotten about it. That means that I haven't even been truly open with myself for long while. I have been locking away my emotions because I haven't had a safe person to share them with -- my marriage has been rocky, and it only hurts more to share my feelings with someone who loves but does not understand. Anika is my soul-twin, she understands me so well. Even as insecure as I have felt this week, not wanting to burden her since she is already hurting, and not sure how much of me she wants to know, I have felt safe enough to open up several dusty locked trunks inside. In one of them I rediscovered my desire to know myself, despite the pain that inevitably comes along with that.

In another I found my desire to be my true self -- that messy, organic, magical, primitive, wild self. I'm not inherently a neat, thoughtful person. I can be, but it's not one of my stronger qualities. My true self is impulsive, mercurial, changeable, unpredictable -- with all the crap that comes along with that. I can make people feel left out or forgotten or overlooked, because I AM so impulsive. And I've been trying to be this person who is steady and dependable -- it's just not me! I am the kind of person who will walk over burning coals if I know that you need it, but I am not the type to watch everyone I love and figure out for them if they need me. I have to be told, usually. Which requires a sacrifice on the other person's part -- they have to be vulnerable enough to say, "I need you to __________." And it's okay for me to be the kind of person that I am. I will slowly grow better at discerning needs, but I will never be as good as people who are born with that gift. And that's okay -- but I didn't realize that until I looked at Anika and saw a person with many of the same gifts (and lacks!), and saw how incredibly perfect she is just as she is. We weren't meant to be steady and dependable and predictable -- we have other gifts.

What this means in LJ-land is that I am deleting the ton of posts in my "temp" bookmark folder, and I will comment as I feel the impulse. I will post when I feel the impulse, rather than carefully filling every box in my calendar with a post every day. This will probably mean that sometimes your friends-page will be spammed with my posts -- and I refuse to lj-cut text, because I like to read my journal without having to flip between pages. Selfish? Perhaps. But it is important to me and I am not willing to sacrifice it. I may also de-add some people whose journals I tend to skim, because with my lack of commenting I want to be able to promise people who are on my list that I read their every word. And I won't respond to every single comment in my journal, but only those that I feel the desire to (or that ask a question, of course).

sounds: PJ Harvey: "Down By The Water"
connecting: , , , , ,

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sidheblessed ══╣╠══
I hope that you will find more joy in LJ now that you've made changes to the way you keep it and given youself permission to be your impulsive self. If you force yourself to write everyday or comment on everything then you're making LJ a chore. Neithr journals nor friends shoud ever feel like obligations.

I could have said ths better I suppose, but those are my two cents. *hugs* Good luck with your "new" LJ! I hope you find it fulfilling.

belenen ══╣wild╠══
I already am finding more joy in LJ, I love it!

And thank you! ;-)
meganlynnangela ══╣╠══
Hey there, I'm a "stalker" from the curvy girls community, that just finds your posts to be highly...intelligent. And interesting.

I just wanted to say...it's not like I know you, really. I don't know what your "true self" looks like, neccesarily. And while I do believe we are born with a lot of inborn tendencies...I think a lot of who we are depends on who we want to be.

So in case you get lost trying to find your true self...maybe you can start looking for who you want to be, then work on being that person.

But you seem pretty great as it is. I will say a little prayer for you now.
belenen ══╣ethereal╠══
And while I do believe we are born with a lot of inborn tendencies...I think a lot of who we are depends on who we want to be.

I agree, I think the type of person we most admire is the type of person we were meant to be. And thank you so much for the prayer, I really appreciate it. I think that is one of the most precious things you can give someone.
twisteddaydream ══╣Pieces╠══
*quiet* This is really long and really...involved, but I wanted to point it out to you because you inspired it...

belenen ══╣shimmering╠══
I read the whole thing, and will probably go there and make a more involved comment later... but for now let me just say that you are bold and strong and I admire you so much for starting on that journey.
(Anonymous) ══╣╠══
belenen ══╣garrulous╠══
thanks for the support. ;-)
(Anonymous) ══╣╠══
belenen ══╣artistic╠══
If you want to share your troubles and "imperfections", I want to hear them.
right back atcha, lady!

You are such a beautiful, beautiful person, in every way, and I am so glad to have met you. I'm glad you've started opening up more -- I really look forward to growing closer to you.

I use Opal (I know, you'd never recognize it, heh), very heavily modified. I think I have been using this layout (with minor changes all the time) for at least a year. I really like it, and the opal_help community is great for learning to use it.
girlblue_77 ══╣╠══
I love this post... It is so honest and introspective, which is the point of a journal, now, isn't it?

I can relate to so much of it...

Longing for a soulfriend: I've had some in the past, but they are busy and live far, far away. You don't realize how irreplaceable they are until they are gone.

Censoring myself, in my journal and to my new grad school friends (and knowing my new friends are probably censoring themselves too). I so long for one of those nights where you stay up so late talking with a friend that you are both physically falling asleep, but can't stop talking because the conversation is so satisfying. I long to open up, and have someone understand and accept me, and to have those moments where someone is opening up to you, and you realize that you understand them too...

Anyway, I'm glad you're doing this. I've always believed that the secret to happiness is not to try your hardest to be perfect, but to admit to yourself and others that you aren't perfect, and to try to work with your flaws. Good luck!!
belenen ══╣gentle╠══
I so long for one of those nights where you stay up so late talking with a friend that you are both physically falling asleep, but can't stop talking because the conversation is so satisfying.

that was EVERY NIGHT during Anika's visit. I LOVED it!

I really really hope that you can find a soulfriend soon -- I know how painful it is to long for one. ♥
writer_lilies ══╣╠══
It's your journal. Do what you want. Post what you want and when you want. Don't do anything out of obligation. Do it because it makes you happy. If if offends someone, oh well. They can leave.
belenen ══╣amused╠══
thanks for the support. ;-)
kmiotutsie ══╣╠══
belenen ══╣amused╠══
I love you girl! ;-)
kmiotutsie ══╣╠══
*hug* ;-)
[music] bring me to life
notashamed ══╣[music] bring me to life╠══
bel, this is exactly how i want you to act. I want you to be honest with yourself and be honest with those of us who read your journal. I don't want you to think that you have to be absolutely perfect or that your posts have to be linear and organized or that every comment has to have a response. I want you to be able to treat LJ the way that you want to use it. I really don't want you to leave, because I find you inspiring and fascinating, but you have to do what makes you happy. Even if you only post once every 3 months, I'll keep you on my flist.

I hope that you will continue to feel comfortable in your own skin. That you will accept your strengths and your faults. I'll keep praying for you and your family. I love you.
belenen ══╣loving╠══

Thank you for this, so much. You matter so much to me and I genuinely love you. Thank you so much for the prayers. *tight hugs*
paravati ══╣╠══
Yeah, what they said.

Do your journal for you. If you start imagining what people want to read or how they're going to be thinking of you after they read it, then it's not for YOU anymore and it doesn't serve the same function.

I write almost every entry as Public. The only things I make Friends-Only are entries that might mention actual sexual things, or things about my ex (only because my current man reads my journal and I don't want him reading about my mixed feelings about my ex.)

Aside from those two rules (vulgarity, personal, and ex-related posts), everything public.

You never have to remember anything, if you tell the truth all the time. Just tell the truth and let it lay how it lays. Forget about what people are going to think or say or whatever. Comments are wonderful but you shouldn't write FOR that.

I do sometimes write things and intentionally try to be funny, and it makes me feel good when someone notices something I said and tells me that it was funny... But other than that, I don't "try" to write with any particular style.

Journaling is like therapy for me. I couldn't go lying or "performing" to my therapist, or I'd be wasting my $80 an hour. :)
belenen ══╣honesty╠══
Thanks for this! I like your point of view. I'm working toward complete openness -- not quite there yet, but much closer than I used to bee.
(Anonymous) ══╣╠══
semi aitiaidi colour roc
belenen ══╣semi aitiaidi colour roc╠══
Re: Eh good...
Thank you love. ;-) This is so much fun, seeing you on LJ for real!
I am not Lost
phrankenstyne ══╣I am not Lost╠══
I think I speak for everyone in my world when I say "Welcome back!" Of course, being the only one in my world, I can't be totally sure we all feel that way. . .

Welcome back anyway. It was lonely here without you.

P.S. Any chance you might hook me up with a spiffy customized journal like yours? It seems my creative talent is in writing instead of . . . whatever that would be.
belenen ══╣amused╠══
*giggles* You and your world. ;-)

Do you know what you want for your journal? What you want it to look like?
light .:. smurfb1ue
smurfb1ue ══╣light .:. smurfb1ue╠══
I think that your being able to look at yourself with honest, wide open eyes is a beautiful thing that I hope you never lose. It's a precious gift that I'm so glad you've found. And I'm glad you've found someone like Anika who can help you discover these things.
belenen ══╣loving╠══
Me too. ;-) Thank you.
(Anonymous) ══╣╠══
belenen ══╣vivacious╠══
on communication, social justice, intimacy, consent, friendship & other relationships, spirituality, gender, queerness, & dreams. Expect to find curse words, nudity, (occasionally explicit) talk of sex, and angry ranting, but NEVER slurs or sexually violent language. I use TW when I am aware of the need and on request.
Expect to find curse words, nudity, (occasionally explicit) talk of sex, and angry ranting, but NEVER slurs or sexually violent language. I use TW when I am aware of the need and on request.