What About The Soul?

I’ve been debating over whether or not I wished to pen this at all, but I figure that this is a lower traffic outlet that I have where I can just drop this and walk away so-to-speak.

I’ve always wondered what it’s like to not be overwhelmed all the time. Even as a child, I was either in a warzone between parents or floating through dysphoria or trying to work under a boss that I’ve talked about too much by now or struggling with depression that made it difficult to get up and attend classes. This last item has been around forever, and I’ve never really gotten that great at coping with it. I’m a quiet person by nature, speaking as few words as I possibly can to get through the day and wishing I could do less, without any remorse for it. However, it means that all of my problems that I attempt to resolve are kept in my harbor, and the ships never sail to other ports to collect useful items for the journey. Combined with a death positive attitude, sometimes morbidly curious, this can make for stormy waters to navigate through life.

I’m only twenty five, soon to be twenty six, and I’ve figured out most of the things that make me tick and how to tiptoe around my inner maze to prevent echoes from destroying the walls that are fragile when I, or someone very close to me, tampers with them. I found ways to fortify my citadel from outside attacks only recently, by treating my dysphoria, but I am still internally vulnerable, and I continue to wear down daily. As I make my rounds in my mind, I find that yet another crack has developed even when I should be an otherwise perfectly happy individual. I’ve tried to seal those off with antidepressants in the past, but those only allowed me access to medication that I could damage myself with, but they never provided relief. For this, I am a restless soul.

I do not know where my journey is taking me, but more days than not I fear it will drag me under. As Sylvia Plath wrote, “I am a victim of introspection.” Like Jonker, I walk into the sea, perhaps with uncertainty but with dignity. If I am to be swallowed by the ocean’s depths, I will at least try until the last breath. That is what I have been doing after I found that I was too average, too poor, and too shaken to continue on to graduate school – simply struggling and trying. I do not lament this so, as I technically achieved my dreams. Dreams that I had when I was a young child trying to understand physics flashcards that were beyond my level, but were mailed to me anyway. So, I guess I could say that I have achieved what I wished, and would be quite content if I were swept away to find out what’s next. If anything.

However, nothing is yet settled. I have disturbed the sediment between my now painted toes. I wonder what is next, and for that I have concern. I chose to live with my significant other before they were, technically, ready. Technically in the sense that we are both financially dependent. They have their reasons, I have mine. It’s scary being both too prideful to accept aid for your poverty or lack of ability simply because you were raised to see assistance from the government as a hinderance to laziness. I no longer believe it, but I still hesitate to even make an attempt at attaining those funds. I do not view myself as a worthy cause. I am deficient, or broken, in some way because I am so curious. I see other people that are far more in need than myself, and I wish for them to go first. My anxiety and agoraphobia prevent me from seeking answers to whether or not someone like me, a person that might be considered disabled but wishes to simply exist without labelling herself, even qualifies for any assistance. I allow such avenues to stagnate. I do not believe such things are in my future. I am a burden, and I am ever-so-slightly okay with that, for if I am to be a burden then I wish to be an independent burden that has tried to navigate the world in the best way that could be found given the circumstances and tools within my repertoire.

That is the whole reason I got into YouTube. Other options, for me, are either too much or have accessibility problems for myself that I cannot overcome on my own, and I know my employers will not be willing as we are expendable when we seek jobs from other people. Thus, I chose to create my own environment so that I would not have to worry about the triviality of my own nature – I would rather contemplate such things on paper than while being a puppet. Yet, nothing is guaranteed in life. I am under no illusion that, more likely than not, my expedition towards achieving goals that I have set such as paying more of my own bills, helping Tangerine with theirs, and building onto that until I can give back to those around me and the communities that I attempt to reach out to.

I seek this peace, because I do not have peace where I am now. Now, I live with four other people that, while extremely kind and I am gracious for their hospitality, I am not compatible with for a cornucopia of reasons. If you’ve ever had the dishes done at you angrily for the rest of your life, it can be difficult to deal with people that aggressively wash the dishes and put them away simply by force of habit rather than animosity. When you’re a reserved person, it can be difficult to deal with people and find safe spaces away from the constant feeling of outside invasion. When you’re used to maltreatment, every knock on a door is a dreaded one that triggers your stomach to bottom out and implode into nausea and fear even when your victimizer is thousands of miles apart from you and several years removed. I am sensitive in all the ways I wish not to be, and harsh in all the ways that are most undesirable. The analyses of data that I have done, the conclusions that I’ve found, and the opinions that I have formed along with the mannerisms that have been shaped for me and by me coalesce into a being that I both love and loathe. It is at this point that I am left to wonder where my own soul lies. I feel completely disconnected from my fellow human beings, but I also feel close to so many of them. This oxymoronic lifestyle coupled with the complexities of my circumstances baffle me, and I often simply want to run away.

As I continue to sail into the fog, consumed by the unknown, shaking afraid at the wind that is chilling my bones in this barren scape that I have come to through years of trying to find my way and carve out my own niche, I wonder if I will be left to swim, or will I sink before reaching a safe harbor. The cracks are increasing, and the sand is draining through the hourglass. The choice is being quickly made for me, and I do not have a particular preference anymore. As with most things in life, I let things happen while taking action when I can do so. I am indifferent, forming no emotional bonds to them for fear of some weakness, but it would be disingenuous to say that I had absolutely no preference. However, at this point, I am going wherever life takes me. Even if it takes me to the Isles of the Blessed where I can finally rest.

If you are feeling the same way, overwhelmed by every situation that has occurred to create you and where you are in life, know that you’re not alone, for I was either once there or I sailed past at some point. Keep your light on and hold out for as long as you are able to, and before you extinguish it, leave a piece of you behind so that the next person may go beyond.

Stay safe. You are incredible.

Respectability Politics

YT Link: https://youtu.be/3Aea8diurIM

[Image Description: A gradient background with an individual with long hair and glasses, chin held high, looking towards the camera smugly, arms at her side. The title reads: “What I Think of ‘Tone Policing,’ Respectability Politics, as an Internet Troll.”]

Synopsis: I’ve been on the Internet for a very long time – from Y! Games chats like Battleships & Pool, to MMORPGS like RuneScape. Throughout it all, I have been abrasive,  and sometimes a bit deceptive. However, never would I ever think it would be correct to tell someone not to go about speaking about a topic in a particular way. Here’s what I think about people that try to silence oppressed minority groups by telling them that the only valid path out is the path of silence, peace, and happiness in the face of harm. Life isn’t happy rainbows.

Transcript: Full disclosure, as if you couldn’t have guessed by now, I am basically an Internet troll. A study with a total of 1,215 participants by Erin Buckels and her colleagues examined the respondent’s personality traits and their style of posting on the web. The researchers found that there was extremely strong correlation between four specific traits: narcissism, Machiavellianism, psychopathy, and subclinical sadism. These traits are often nicknamed the “dark tetrad” of personality traits. Individuals with these traits tend to rank lower in agreeableness and conscientiousness. Unfortunately for me, maybe I still haven’t decided, I fall under this umbrella.

Where most people see the Internet as an opportunity to lay waste to any person in their path, I see a way of bringing hope. I see a way of showing that society’s attempt to make human diversity, which harms nothing but the status quo, taboo will not stand. I was not always that way, but I did always push people’s buttons for fun. It was a long and windy road to get my morals where they are today, but here we are. I create chaos within demographics for the purpose of making a point using whatever means necessary.

Of course, not every individual is happy with the way I go about my life. For example, here is a post to a mailbox I use for hate mail:

“When you complain about cis people the way cis people complain about us trans folk, you look just as bad as them tbh” ~ Anonymous

This is an exemplary example for what you should do if you wish to practice respectability politics, often known as “tone policing.” It implies that every argument is from a logical rational basis, and if one acts “correctly,” then the oppression will cease to exist, and all will be well. It has its roots deep in the civil rights movement where people of color with elite standing would blame the bad behavior of white individuals in power on the actions of the people of color beneath them. This can be readily seen in Booker T. Washington’s Speech to the Atlanta Cotton States and International Exposition given on September 18, 1895. In it, he claims that it is foolish to artificially force social progress, and that being complacent will bring change.

This attempt at peacekeeping and appeasing the individuals in power comes in many forms, such as: Asking the oppressed individual to cite examples of their oppression, disregarding that there may be a lack of study in that area BECAUSE of the oppression. An oppressed individual must never be angry at their oppressor, must never outsmart their oppressor, must never make their oppressor feel agitated, must never use foul language at their oppressor, and more.

In the most general sense, it says that a person with any form of power or privilege is less responsible for their actions and understanding.

This is a belief where the imbalance of power and the lack of mechanisms to bring it into balance are ignored entirely. It sugarcoats reality for the consumption of fragile individuals that are not prepared to face the realization that prejudice is not rational. It’s not an informed opinion. It’s a state of existence that is founded on no evidence, and the person choosing to believe it doesn’t care that it’s without merit. They have their anecdotes from limited life experience, and they want to extrapolate that to the larger globe regardless of fallacies. They are comfortable in their beautifully crafted echo chamber, and they don’t wish to challenge their views other than when it’s fed to them in the exact proper way. Even then, they’re likely to smack their lips and claim that the meal was unsatisfying while demanding more proof. More credibility. More reasons. This relates back to the Dunning-Kruger effect. They know so little, that they’re unable to readily identify a legitimate source of information, unable to understand the information presented, and apathetic to remedying either.

In my opinion, that is a far worse state of existence than being a simple Internet troll with a purpose. However, you’re free to come to your own conclusions. Let me know what you think in the comment box below. I promise to try to be nice, depending on the tone. Haha. 😉 Let me know what you think of trolls.. Has your view changed on them? Do you troll with or without a purpose? I’d be interested to know. Thank you for joining me witchlings, I appreciate you one and all. I hope that you stay safe, and know that you are incredible! Bye~