that if i
myself i will not
stop pouring. (why do i fear
becoming a river. what mountain
gave me such shame.)
All of these parts of myself coexist in my body, a representation of evolution and migration and truth. My body carries within its frame beauty and agony, certainty and murkiness, loathing and love. And I’ve learned to accept it, as is. For so much of my life, I wished into the dark to be someone else, some elusive ideal that represented possibility and contentment. I was steadily reaching in the dark across a chasm that separated who I was and who I thought I should be. Somewhere along the way, I grew weary of grasping at possible selves, just out of reach. So I put my arms down and wrapped them around me.
—Janet Mock, Redefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, Love & So Much More (Pg. 258)
(via Molten Soul)
When we love a person, we accept him or her exactly as is: the lovely with the unlovely, the strong along with the fearful, the true mixed in with the façade, and of course, the only way we can do it is by accepting ourselves that way.
—Fred Rogers / The World According To Mister Rogers
(via solo amor)
We all run from the ugly. And the farther we run from it, the more we stigmatize it and the more power we give beauty. Our communities are obsessed with being beautiful and gorgeous and hot. What would it mean if we were ugly? What would it mean if we didn’t run from our own ugliness or each other’s? How do we take the sting out of “ugly?” What would it mean to acknowledge our ugliness for all it has given us, how it has shaped our brilliance and taught us about how we never want to make anyone else feel? What would it take for us to be able to risk being ugly, in whatever that means for us. What would happen if we stopped apologizing for our ugly, stopped being ashamed of it? What if we let go of being beautiful, stopped chasing “pretty,” stopped sucking in and shrinking and spending enormous amounts of money and time on things that don’t make us magnificent?”
(via Learning everyday…)
When you find yourself drowning in self-hate, you have to remind yourself that you weren’t born feeling this way. That at some point in your journey, some person or experience sent you the message that there was something wrong with who you are, and you internalized those messages and took them on as your truth. But that hate isn’t yours to carry, and those judgments aren’t about you. And in the same way that you learned to think badly of yourself, you can learn to think new, self-loving and accepting thoughts. You can learn to challenge those beliefs, take away their power, and reclaim your own. It won’t be easy, and it won’t happen over night. But it is possible. And it starts when you decide that there has to be more to life than this pain you feel. It starts when you decide that you deserve to discover it.
You aren’t flawed […] I don’t know whether you’ll be what your parents wanted you to be, but whatever you become, you’ll be complete. You’ll have within yourself everything you need to content yourself. Just follow what seems right to you.
–Octavia Butler, Adulthood Rites
LGBT pride does not mean being proud of having been born lesbian, gay, bisexual, or trans.
It means being proud of having survived.
It means being proud of living in a homophobic, biphobic, transphobic society — a society that commonly treats us with contempt at best and violent hatred at worst — and still getting on with our lives. It means being proud of flourishing, in a society that commonly thinks we’re broken. It means being proud of being happy, in a society that commonly thinks we should be miserable. It means being proud of being good and compassionate, in a society that commonly thinks we’re wicked. It means being proud of fighting for our rights and the rights of others like us, in a society that commonly thinks we should lie down and let ourselves get walked on — or that thinks we should be grateful for crumbs and not ask for more. It means being proud of retaining our dignity, in a society that commonly treats us as laughing-stocks. It means being proud of loving our sexuality and our bodies, in a society that commonly thinks our sexuality and our bodies are disgusting. It means being proud of staying alive, in a society that commonly beats us down and wants us dead.
It is not easy to do any of this. Despite the many advances LGBT people have made over the decades, we still live in a society that commonly thinks we should be ashamed simply for existing. It is incredibly difficult to listen to people denigrate us, taunt us, humiliate us, bully us, shame us, from the earliest days of our childhood until the day we die — and still flourish, still be happy, still be compassionate, still fight for our rights, still retain our dignity, still love our bodies and our sexualities and our selves, still survive.
It is not easy to do any of this. It takes work.
When LGBT people talk about LGBT pride, when we attend LGBT Pride celebrations, when we say we’re proud to be gay or lesbian or bisexual or trans, this is what we’re talking about. It is a hugely important aspect of LGBT history and culture. And when people mock it and denigrate it in public, many of us take it rather personally. Experience has taught us that when people treat the concept of LGBT pride with hostility and contempt, they tend to treat us — our history, our culture, our struggles for equality and rights — with hostility and contempt.
Be kind to yourself. Stop telling yourself that whatever you are struggling with “should” be easy. If something is hard for you, it is hard for you. There are probably Reasons, though those may just be how you are wired. Acknowledge these things. When you finish something hard, be proud! Celebrate a little.
And really, just stop saying “should” to yourself about your thoughts and feelings in any context. You feel how you feel. The things in your head are the things in your head. You can’t change either directly through sheer force of will. You can only change what you do. Stop beating yourself up for who and what you are right now–it isn’t productive. Focus on moving forward.
(via because i am a woman)
Promise yourself to be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind. To talk health, happiness, and prosperity to every person you meet. To make all your friends feel that there is something in them. To look at the sunny side of everything and make your optimism come true. To think only the best, to work only for the best, and to expect only the best. To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are about your own. To forget the mistakes of the past and press on to the greater achievements of the future. To wear a cheerful countenance at all times and give every living creature you meet a smile. To give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you have no time to criticize others. To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear, and too happy to permit the presence of trouble. To think well of yourself and to proclaim this fact to the world, not in loud words but great deeds. To live in faith that the whole world is on your side so long as you are true to the best that is in you.
–Christian D. Larson, Your Forces and How to Use Them
(via She Who Shall Not be Linked to)