I don’t know why I feel the need to start today off with a Truman show mention, it just feels appropriate. I’ve been stressed as hell lately. I wasn’t intending to take time off from LMBG, I stopped smoking weed because I had a bad night or two, and then that catapulted into several bad nights, and I admit over the last week and a half I have really struggled to find my balance again.
I actually got so pissed off the other day I walked down to the crossroads by my house just to scream, I haven’t done that in two years. I never go down there anymore, because too many people know I go there, so it doesn’t feel like mine.
More and more I am finding the need to find, create, or build a space that is all mine, that I do not have to share with anyone. Too many memories of trauma are bringing back feelings of being touched in places that I would never have consented to be touched in, if I’d had the freedom to make my own choices.
Setting boundaries is really difficult when you’ve been repeatedly abused, largely because you become conditioned to believe that you don’t have the right to say no, or to make choices that others disagree with. You are constantly hearing the voice of someone saying “good choice,” when what they really mean is “good choice because that’s the one that keeps me safe, and thus you too, because now I don’t have to get angry and beat you to death.”
And I’ve been thinking a lot about choices lately, because more and more I am hearing about stabbings, and shootings across Canada that are all gang related, and now we’re hearing about yet another cop who was busted having been giving info to gangsters in wherever the fuck he was.
I’m tired. I am tired of gang life, I am tired of talking about trauma, and I am tired of talking about abuse and the miserable feelings that come with both, but the thing is, that just because we don’t talk about it, doesn’t mean that it’s going to stop.
So many people have been lying to me lately, to test me, and it’s frustrating because when people lie to you “for your own good,” what they mean to you is “I am taking your choice away, just like your abusers did, but it’s different, because I’m not punching you in the face.”
Just because you aren’t causing bodily damage, doesn’t mean that you aren’t causing damage to the relationship that we could have had if you’d told the truth, and often times, victims and survivors live with so many lies that are designed to protect themselves from the hurt they’ve already experienced, and the hurt that may be caused if they tell the truth, (to themselves and others) that the lies that we surround ourselves, only add to the net that keep us constrained.
Freedom is supposed to be something that we’re born with, but like Truman, we have to fight for it, we have to prove that we deserve it, and no matter how much freedom we get there are always going to be rules, laws, and boundaries, that we have to keep to, in order to keep that freedom, so is it really freedom?
On my way to the bank and to pick up breakfast today I saw more than half a dozen men and women sleeping on the street, or in doorways, and all I could think is how fucking disgusting it is that in 2021, with all that money floating around, we still have people who live the houseless life, not by choice, but because they are incapable of being healthy.
And the ONLY reason that they are incapable of being “healthy” by societies standards, is almost 99% because of the fact that they have been so deeply traumatized at one time or another, that they’ve turned to drugs, or they’ve lost their homes because they’ve become overwhelmed with life, or because they or someone they love got sick and they couldn’t keep up.
We should at this stage in human history, be prepared and able to take care of those of us who are falling behind. We should be able to provide housing, food, clothing, and education, for every human on earth without it ever being a question. We SHOULD be able to take care of each other, and yet we are still divided by race, creed, color, nationality, size, orientation, job status, education, place of living, etc. It just never stops, and it makes me wonder how with so many things dividing humanity, we ever manage to find things like love, family, and friendship.
I have 1 friend in particular, that I miss more than life. Our motto used to be “I’m not ready to Die today,” and I promised her that no matter how bad things got I’d never end my life. We drifted because…life, I went one way, she went another, the last I heard she’s not homeless anymore, but she was for a long ass time, and I couldn’t help her.
The reason that I couldn’t help her, was because I was so deeply broken by my own trauma, and the thought of her out there for another winter makes me sick to my stomach. She’s a principal reason behind why I’m alive today, because I remember exactly where we were sitting, I remember how serious she was when she said “don’t die today,” and how much we laughed when I paused before saying, “naw, not in the mood today.”
There is so much that I want to do with my life, with this brand, and in all honesty it’s not funding holding me back, it’s my past refusing to let go of the fact that I am never going to be the person that I used to be, ever again.
I didn’t realize that there would be so many people who left me years ago, and who would only come back when they thought that I could save their family members. I’m sorry but I can’t tell your grown ass son not to rape a woman, cause he’s gonna do whatever the fuck he wants to do regardless of what I say, and this idea that we all have to be the same is precisely why this pandemic is never going to end.
I rarely leave my house, and so today I asked my cab driver to take the extra long route, just so that I could be out of the house longer, which is precisely why I need to get my driver’s license ASAP, because I need to stop putting what “I” want, on hold for everyone around me.
I am so tired of taking care of other people, and the question “do you want kids?” makes me want to punch people in the head. No. I don’t.
I spent my 20s taking care of other people’s children, I spent my teens being the punching bag for girls who thought I wanted to date their boyfriends, and then realized that their boyfriends had their own complicated issues so the girls moved on, and honestly? I’m dizzy.
I just want to sit, and enjoy the sun, and you know what pisses me off the most? It’s raining today.
Luckily I have an umbrella, but too many people out there do not have an umbrella, so I came up with some things you could start stocking up on now, so that you can tuck them into your car or your purse and hand out to those who are clearly in more need than we are.
- Socks (ALWAYS PEOPLE ALWAYS NEED NEW SOCKS)
- Gift Cards to coffee shops or food places
- Work boots (work boots that are less than 2 years old are great for day laborer’s)
- Tents (Some people live outside by choice, a decent tent can go a long way.)
- Sleeping bags
Anything else you think of can be dropped off at your local Foodbank, or at a church or neighborhood community based organization to hand out during these winter months. Last year we (as in the LMBG Community) raised $850 for hoodies for the homeless, but honestly that wasn’t a very effective way to spend the money so I won’t be doing that this year, but if you’d like to donate, please consider the Surrey Foodbank, Surrey Urban Mission, or the Salvation Army.
Sending all my love,
Devon J Hall