close to open

I had to give up socializing through media for a while, it worked out to be years actually. I had to give up socializing through media because I had to give up socializing at all. I redefined my values. I couldn't be totally silent because I am me and part of me is saying what I think when I think it. I stuck to making videos that no robot would or could absorb the content of. I don't trust "big tech" because their motives are profit. Human lives do not mean more than the profit margins they report every three months, not to the companies that allow me to write this out and share it with others. But there is no alternative method of telling the people who have shared my life with me for the last 34 years what I think and who I am.

In the last two and a half years I have learned so much more about boundaries than I knew before. Boundaries are actually quite exhausting. More exhausting than expectations. I used expectations for a long time. I would be open, totally open, to anyone. Even when my instincts told me that my openness made me vulnerable to someone's intention to exploit me, I would still be open. Until I was exploited. Until I was hurt. Until their actions, over and over, fell into the category of not valuing my life or recognizing the importance of my existence in their life. And then I hurt and I grieved and I put up a wall towards them. Walls that I still, to this day, am working through the pain of their foundations. I have turned many of those walls into boundaries, or set boundaries in the vicinity of the walls, such that my relationship has not changed much from their perspective. I have set boundaries where I wasn't allowing myself to build walls, and those relationships changed significantly. But in no way, shape or form have I been able to tear down walls and return to openness. Except with social media.

We moved from one side of Denmark to the other about 3 and a half years ago. And when we did that the social network that we built up for nearly 5 years; the structure of support that made me love living in this country more than any other place I had ever lived; that network disintegrated. And no new network formed in its place. The people who I called friends never asked me how we were doing. If I was around to visit, because I was around to visit, they would listen to the struggles and become weary that nothing in our life was easy. And that was true before we moved, but I saw the reaction so much clearer afterwards. Any advice they shared was intended to be helpful, but that was rare. For the most part, we experienced treatment that fell along the lines of "out of sight, out of mind." The only thing that anyone seemed to ask questions about was the house we left behind. We left the house behind to serve God but the house still required work. God has granted the resources for that work. God has been faithful and provided for our needs so we have not experienced financial ruin. But the people who we shared our lives with, who used their words to serve God in front of us, but then demonstrated that they had no idea how to follow those words through with actions; those people were not faithful to us. I know they did their best. I know they are ignorant and broken and would never even understand the pain that it takes to still look them in the eye and smile and say nice things to them. But I believe they deserve my kindness over my rebuke. It's not my job to judge their actions, only to say that they weren't good enough to keep my family from suffering. Only to say that, in some cases, their actions became a direct cause of suffering for me, and my husband and mostly for my children. I offer kindness because, I am sure, they would have never taken on the responsibility of preventing our suffering if it was laid out in front of them as an established expectation before anyone become intertwined in our social&support network. It was just a responsibility God assumed they could rise to, their words made us assume it as well, and ultimately the worldly values of their culture ruled over the message of Jesus. But it is the main reason my family will never actively seek to integrate ourselves into a group of Danes who call themselves Christians again. This is how boundaries establish themselves. And now it is just our story. It is just what happened. It is just where we are.

Pain is part of life. I wish my life did not include so much of it. I see people who have many more friends from when they were growing, when they were in full time education so friends were necessary. I had friends then to, most relationships just did not last through my international moves, so I don't know what it is like. I see women with family who just come over and sit with their children so that they can have a break to go work on something that builds them up. I don't know what that is like. I live surrounded by people who have such a deep network of friends and family that they can not comprehend the challenges I face. And they are rude to me about the help I do not have. But it doesn't change facts. I have no one to call in an emergency. I have no help beyond my husband and a group of people who live an ocean away.
I have learned that I have to take on the role of "apologetic burden who can't do anything right" in order to ask anyone physically close to me for help. I know I am not a burden. I know how right my life is, under the circumstances that it was created for me, so it feels manipulative to pretend otherwise and I don't do it anymore. And so, I have had to sacrifice connections with women I trusted to care for my children when my husband had to take me to the hospital in the past. Women I shared my life with on a regular basis, I don't have them any longer. The women I count on are an ocean away now. And for physical support, I am now dependent on my husband and his work-life. His work-life already provides the roof over my head, the food I eat and the clothes I put on my children. Now it has to provide emergency support too. I am dependent on his relationships with people that I have never met. Because if I need to be in the hospital again, and I need him with me, those are the only people we can to call on to stay with our children. And the strangeness of strangers taking care of them will traumatize our children. But, we have to risk that trauma to them because the pain of all the other trauma we have experienced is too great to overcome as just us two. And any attempts to repair that trauma with the people who helped shape it have, thus far, created more pain.

After the end of January next year, I probably won't feel as worried about this emergency scenario with no emergency contacts situation. But it is relevant right now as I am a woman who will end up in a hospital soon. I am in my last trimester of my fourth pregnancy, which will hopefully become my third healthy baby with boy genitals. I am five years older than the last time my body went through the experience of birthing a human. I am significantly more neuro-compromised thanks to the chronic infection of HHV4 that destroys my central nervous system everyday. I am holding more pain than I have ever held in my life emotionally and physically. But, I am also experiencing more spiritual stability and connection to my Jesus than I have ever had. So I have faith that my body will perform exactly the same as it has in the past two pregnancies. The ones which gave us our first two sons; each ten days late and in controlled, drama-free, short but not too short natural labours with challenge-free deliveries. I have no reason to believe this pregnancy will end any differently. And that this pregnancy does not end any differently is the most frequent prayer uttered from my lips and running constantly through my mind these days. Followed by the one that begs for my children to not have to be some version of survivours of World War 3. Even if that version is akin to the children in Denmark who lived through World War 1 and 2.

It is very unsettling to bring a child into this version of the world. I am so heart broken that the Patriarchy would risk the existence of our entire species just to keep their control. I am so disappointed that white women, who I have to count myself among even though I am the mother of brown children; that white women are so ignorant to their slot in the Patriarchal power structure that they would support its existence over a new power structure that can support and benefit all versions of human existence.
Every day in our house hold we have to combat the idea that melanin has more meaning than an evolutionary defense for sun protection.
Every day we have to discuss how the physical appearance, hair and clothing choices, that make a human comfortable walking out in the world have nothing to do with the bits of meat which dangle or do not dangle from their bodies.
And as our children grow, more and more, we will discuss how the prayers a person is taught to pray have no bearing on their overall character, not as much as the daily love they can be shown from others and how it grows their capacity to show that love to others.
It feels like we are the minority in offering these messages to our children. And we are the minority here in Denmark, most certainly, with no doubt. But maybe if all the parents of our generation were collected across the planet, we would learn that we are less alone than our feelings tell us we are. Maybe. Hopefully.

It seems more than likely that the planet will have to experience some concentrated pain before that is certainly true. People have disconnected themselves from the obvious lessons of humanity past. People do not trust other people. As a human carrying so much pain around, such that it is very difficult to not let it out, overflowed, in not constructive ways on to others; as a human who has trusted people who should have never been trusted with her heart and mind and secrets of soul; as a human who hurts more every time she hears a story of pain fueled violence causing deaths of innocents; I can understand why people choose disconnection. I have chosen it myself in these past years. But now that I have the boundaries in place that allow me to feel safe to open back up again, I am. This doesn't resolve the pain, but neither does being closed off. Closing off means you have to numb the pain, and numbing causes the most problems when it comes to disconnection.

Creating is the only solution I have to resolve my personal pain. Creating new bonds with boundaries that make those bonds feel safe. Creating spaces for plants that provide food and clean air to my family. Creating internet content that says human life, every single version of it, is more important than the balances of any bank account on this planet. Creating a new human in the face of the potential for the most destructive forces of humanity to clash and devastate my species. Creating human minds that see past the fears and deceptions of Patriarchy. Creation is the only channel I have to resolve my pain and I will do it until God grants me my last breath.

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