Saturday 21 October 2017

DSTS - #metoo

90. One more passing show

So this blogging journey is onto the home stretch and what started for me as a reminder to live simply, peacefully, mindfully and with perspective to get me through some difficult life moments has ended up taking me to new and exciting places - literally - where I have continued to challenge my norm and become more empowered and free and hopefully help others to feel the same along the way and to some other tough challenges as well. I have shared many experiences of my life over the past couple of years and in doing so I feel like I have gone from strength to strength with my choice to "not settle" for less then what I deserve in any way, shape or form.  My resilience is on point, my eyes have been opened to new ways of the world and my direction and vision is very clear. (well in one eye anyway).

I've never held anything back along along this journey, I figured things may find their chapter in their own right time and today I'm going to open a door that very few people know about and it's not because I have been reluctant to share, but more about what would the purpose be for doing so. And this week and this chapter, seem to have collided at the same time, making it relevant.

The light has been turned on extra bright and is shining on the ongoing poor treatment that many women are subjected to by men who think that WE are the ones with the problem or are the problem. We asked for it, we deserved it, it's my right to have it, it will make me feel better, you'll enjoy it, you are crazy, I didn't mean it, sorry, not sorry, you'll ruin me, what will my family think if they find out, I was just kidding, you'll never go anywhere unless, I don't know what came over me, I thought that no really meant yes, I don't remember........ seriously fuck that bullshit load of excuses. 

We are all responsible for our actions and our 50% of any interaction.  Sometimes though, we don't have a say in our 50%, we aren't given a choice about what we contribute.  That choice is taken from us by people who think they have right of way and use intimidation, guilt or their power for their own gain.

The #metoo campaign surfaced and I am not a big campaigner - hell I don't even vote - but it is no secret that every day male and female, young and old are being sexually harassed and abused by either known or unknown offenders who continue to make excuses. I have been one of those people and today I will share my story.
Please understand that this will be another freeing moment for me (or I hope so) just like every other story I have and will share and as always, it's about continuing to live life in the most peaceful, happiest, positive way possible, not about feeling broken or a victim or having people feel uncomfortable or sorry.

This moment just like every moment, thought or emotion be it good or bad has gone and it can't be changed.  In relation to not sweating the small stuff, this will be one more passing show. It has been and will continue to be moments in time for which I can never change, but ones that I have chosen to let pass through my life and not interfere with my ability to live or love.  As shitty as they were, I believe they have in some way contributed to me being the beautiful, kind, caring, spirited, fearless, free woman I am right now.  I could have chosen to be angry, fearful and victimised but my choices through life have always been about my world growing bigger, not smaller.  I've never laid blame or made excuses.  I have always tried to move forward and somewhere deep inside me is a fighting shining spirit that always keeps me going. 

Sometimes sharing our experiences can make others feel uncomfortable, or guilty for not knowing and doing something. Sometimes, people don't know what to say, or it opens a conversation that helps others move forward or heal or reminds you that you are more powerful and stronger than you could ever imagine and that maybe your ability to cope will enable someone else to know that they will be okay. As far as #metoo is concerned, I am just one of the 510,000 women and counting (on instagram alone) who have joined the conversation on something that is a sad reality that women on this planet often have no worth other than to be sexualised and preyed upon by others. I imagine there are a lot of women too scared, embarrassed, not ready or not sure how to make their voice heard or not sure what to do once they make their voice heard. I can imagine it's a very traumatic experience for many.  For me, I don't feel that way. I'm actually not sure what I feel.....but I AM OKAY! 100% okay.

At about 6 or 7 years of age I experienced my first sexual assault by a boy in his early teens who was part of the group of kids I hung out with.  It was always fun playing all manner of innocent childhood games with others and then one day it all changed.  I was held down, and assaulted and I can still feel the fear and confusion as I looked at someone else who was there, and wondered why this was happening and why that person didn't stop it, and why the abuser did it in the first place. This wasn't part of the play I was used to. It seemed to be over quickly, but from that day, my freedom was gone and there was a fear that clouded my life and a feeling of not being anyone who was loved but someone who had no value or voice.  The time following that is kind of clouded.  I don't know if it happened again but I do know it was a life changer.

I never felt comfortable, confident, good enough or safe.  How was a small child supposed to feel.  I believe they should feel safe, encouraged, loved and cared for and allowed to bloom and I felt alone, and kind of like an observer to my own life. That's the only way I can think to explain it.

Fast forward a few years and inappropriate behaviour of males became a further intrusion in my life. I was touched inappropriately, talked to inappropriately, asked to do things that didn't feel right and held hostage in a sense that if I didn't comply, there would be consequences in one form or another.  From being in primary school and having an item taken from me and told I'd only have it returned if I put my hands down his pants and touched his stupid dick to other pathetic stuff. The sexual powerplay was something I didn't understand, I was a kid, but it was my reality. I won't downplay it, because it was the violation of my basic human fucking rights.  There is no other way to put it.

I didn't want to be near any boys or men. I think I probably struggled to be around anyone, as much as I participated in things I loved like swimming or, gymnastics, I had fun, but there was always something missing. Something that I now have though. Presence and a true sense of self. I did and still do walk around sometimes with my head down - it may be a subconscious feeling of not wanting to be noticed, so I really take notice of that and change that body language.  I deserve to hold my head high, so fucking high, just like every other woman who has walked in these same shoes.

When I was finally free to move into a more adult life, I had no idea what to do. Would every man act this poorly towards me and treat me in a way that made me feel like I was here for nothing more than their warped pleasure or to exert their aggressive power towards me? My personal space was and is to be respected and I will let you in when I feel comfortable. And I have not let many in. That may have kept me at a distance from many great opportunities and people, but my feeling safe is worth more than anything. Once people crack my shell though, they see a warm, loving, kind, compassionate human who brings a spirit that sometimes touches their lives in a way like no other. But I do believe my ability to freely "BE" was taken away.

I've never stopped to wonder what my life may have been like had these experiences not happened because you don't know what you don't know, so you go with what you do know and that's what I did. I let those and other life moments pass through my mind with ease and I somehow made sense of the situation in a way that kept me going in a positive direction, when it could so easily have gone the other way.  Even though they happened I do feel strong and I do feel in charge of my choices and my life. Even the choice of having a child at 19 years old was one I will never regret and my desire to protect and provide him with a safe and stable life was such a priority for me given I wanted his life to at least have an anchor point that I felt I didn't have for various reasons.

Fast forward to the past couple of years where I walked away from my life as I knew it to where I am now.  IN CHARGE.  I may struggle financially, or sometimes feel lonely, but I have got it together, even before the trending of the #metoo tagline, harassment and objectifying women continues to be rampant, and now in a new form.  The online version.

As I have navigated my way through the modern world of online dating and singledom, I am truly horrified with the treatment I have received from total strangers and in a way I am thankful that I have had the barrier of a keyboard between us, because I am not sure their behaviour in the real world would be any better or that my physical or mental safety would be a priority - even though many claim to be good guys.

I opened the door to my new life by engaging more with men, but on my terms. Saying yes to things I wanted to and no to those I didn't and they have had to accept the outcome. But I continue to be guilted, abused, cut off or made to feel worthless when I make the right choices for me. I've been made to feel bad when I insist on a condom (they hurt, they don't feel good, or I have no diseases), or say, no, I actually don't want to have sex with you (okay then bye, you have no worth to me), or no I'm not interested in you (fuck off bitch, you just need good oral), or (see ya later, I'm gonna find someone who'll let me stick my dick into them without having to actually care) when I express that I'd love to get to know a bit about you, but why do I have to open my legs for that to happen?

Yep "so called rejection" sucks, but does it suck more than having another human being force their way onto you physically, or harass you or emotionally blackmail you?  I don't think so.

Even last week, I was sent this message below on Instagram from a total stranger and I replied.  I told this person, that this would be equivalent to wanting to rape me and that is no way to treat another human being. There is nothing consensual about this and yes this is just another norm that I am now subject to as I go about living my life.
Does me or any other person deserve that type of stuff that comes unsolicited when you genuinely try to be nice in a tough online or real world?  The answer is simply, No!  

And this is just one of many unsolicited images and messages I have received from being told hey, I'm toey or horny, or you wanna suck my dick, or you need a spanking, do you like anal, or how about some casual sex, to being sent images with messages such as happy monday, or you know you can handle it, or do you wanna take it in your mouth......... No, No, No and No. My body, my rules and if you don't like it, you can go fuck yourself.

I feel like I have gone on a bit of an emotional journey as I have thought about this and written about it, but for me, getting stuff out of my head has been one of the most freeing things I have ever done. It gives me space to invite new, better things in.

Chapter 90 is one more passing show and the show has been my life, with all the happy, sad, pleasurable and painful, experiences, feelings thoughts and moments that I have had alone or with others. They have gone and new ones will continue to come and go as well. That's how life is. We pass from day to night through sunshine to rain, by the sea or the mountains, and we leave it all behind as we move to the next moment with the choice of how we wish to remember it or let it define us. And this is no different.

All power to me I say, for having an inner something that has enabled me to let go and live a fulfilled successful life. If I let things affect me, I will lose my power over my own life and I'm fucked if ima gonna let that happen. And if I could bottle what strength and spirit shines within me, I'd be handing it out here, there and everywhere to anyone who needed it.

The mature human being goes about doing what needs to be done regardless of whether that person feels great or terrible. Knowing that you are the kind of person with that kind of self-control brings all the satisfaction and confidence you will ever need. Even on days when the satisfaction and confidence just aren’t there, you can get the job done anyway.
David K. Reynolds

Guess I've always been a mature human! 

I do believe my ability and desire to face things head on has over the past couple of years seen me emerge from what I perceived as being a real ugly duckling with nothing to offer and no real purpose to a true beautiful swan who is authentic, and always has a place under my wing to offer warmth and kindness to others. I've defined who I am, what I stand for and the values that I live my life by.
So what happens now. Well, I am going to make contact with my family and let them know I will be sharing this story, (some surprises aren't good ones) I don't know what they know about this as I'm not sure if I have ever talked about it, but I am starting a conversation and I want to reassure them that I am okay. I'm going to continue to allow the tears to roll down my face as I let all of this pass out of my mind and body and then, I'm gonna get the fuck on with life, cause that's what I do best. You should see the pile of washing I have - no wonder I don't have anything to wear…and I'm gonna say "FUCK YOU" to anyone who treats me with less then the respect and care I deserve. And I hope that my courage to be raw and real helps others on their journey.
Note to self:  If you are holding onto things that are causing you to struggle and hold you back from living your best life possible, then ask whether they could somehow free you to live or whether they will continue to keep you prisoner in your own life. This post won’t disintegrate in 10 seconds, but it will be one more passing show as I choose life and choose to live in this moment having accepted that there is nothing I can change.

If I could recommend a few books that have helped me along the way it would be these.
You can heal your life - Louse Hay, for its ability to uncover self-love, worth and healing
Why wait to be great, it's either now or too late - Terry Hawkins, for its ability to give you the power of now
The Sobriety Solution - Dave Andrews and Jack Canfield (for its ability to understand how we can change our self belief and create a new life vision
Don't Sweat the Small Stuff - Richard Carlson, for its ability to remind me of the purpose of kindness and simple living and to not sweat the small stuff.

1 comment:

  1. hey janijans I have been a frequent visitor to your blog and so far I must admit I am impressed by the quality of your blog keep up the good job