April 15

14Clara is so so sick. Again. She has lost her faith. All she can do is suffer and endure. She doesn’t trust her body, or my love. Last night, in the fevered dark, she repeatedly, insistently, told me that I don’t love her. Not really. “You hate me because of what I do.” I assured her again and again that I heard her, that I am so sorry it feels that way, that I do love her so much and always. “It’s not true.” She would reply. “You don’t love me. You only love my sister. I’ve done a bad thing so you hate me.”

Marion Rose sent a message yesterday about our children translating from the universe for us. I look at Clara, fingers interlaced over her heart, wet cloth on her forehead. She asked to lay “just on my own” because I was behind her, trying to support her. She is so angry and sad. I don’t understand how she is looking at the world, and that is where I tend to go to try to understand messages. Maybe, though, that is one of these ways where I abandon my own perspective – disappear myself – in order to try to receive or interpret messages. If I do it Marion’s way … then what Clara says is to help me understand what I am feeling. (My urge is to capitalize that I, italicize it) Am I stuck in a feeling that the universe doesn’t love me? That my parents/partner/friends don’t love what I am doing or trying to do? I suppose, yes. It is part of what I was sharing with Holly yesterday, that I feel like a burden on the earth, on BIPOC communities, and yet, in my own community, where I belong, I struggle to be seen. I worry that people find me unkind or irritating, abrasive, overly intellectual, constantly political, impossible to relax around, hurtful, judgmental. I don’t know how to share my wants and needs from a place that draws people to me. I feel the race stuff so deeply, so personally. I truly am an abolitionist. But I feel performative – and afraid of being perceived that way – when I try to contact others around intersectionality, truth, reality. 

Clara kept saying, “That’s not true.” And in my exhaustion and undivided presence, I knew that partly what she was saying is that there is no way for me to convince her of my position. As long as she feels what she feels, that is what truth is for her. I couldn’t find a way to fully settle into what she was communicating – I said, “what makes you say that?” Because it was false for me. But how can we connect except to attend to what feels true to the other? Nolan can’t possibly see what I see, not having had any of the experiences I’ve had in the last 12 years that have brought me to this perspective. So then how could it be my job to influence him for the sake of the oppressed in this country who have no shot at shifting his truth to include or respect theirs? 

What is it? That sharing my truth would damage people? Our relationship? That it is too dark? Or, selfish? Is that what I fear? Or do I fear that my perspective comes from a desire to take up

No space



No harm

Are these really different?



Published by Devon Riley

lately: youth work, parenting, sorcery, books, walks in the woods

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