I know it’s been a while since we last spoke. Well, until last year when I came out of the blue and wrote you that letter. Here’s the thing, I wrote that it had been so long since I had considered you. But thats not entirely true. Although I haven’t considered you as a viable option for me recently, it is as though I cannot go a day without you pressing on my mind. You are always with me. The strangest things still trigger the religious trauma I’m yet to evade.
I know, I know. “It wasn’t all…
No, really. No one talks about leaving. Maybe it’s taboo. Maybe it’s because people are afraid that if they talk about it, it’ll happen more. We don’t talk about leaving church because we’re scared people will actually leave church. We don’t talk about leaving marriages or long-term relationships because we’re scared that people will start to leave them more often. And, because we don’t talk about it, no one ever knows how to navigate it. It becomes taboo, dirty, something to fear. People don’t know how to navigate when our friends and family members leave. Leaders in churches don’t know…
I got rained on the first day of 2021 and it felt poetic. In the way that as the rain fell on my glasses and my shoulders and my feet, all the “last year shit” was washed away. I’m learning to embrace the cool rain and the pretty views that come from unexpected showers. I’m learning to embrace the seasons of rest, and to know my worth doesn’t depend on if I get rained on in the process.
It was a tough year for everyone, on varying levels, and god knows that hasn’t changed. A day (or 5, by the…
Hi church, It’s been a while since we last spoke. It’s been a while since I even considered you, I’ll be honest. I’ve grown and changed and evolved so much, dug deeper into my self, thought deeply about spirituality, and I just haven’t had a moment to give you. But, it’s time. Its time I wrote to you. Its time I brought some things to light. Its time I asked you to do better. It’s well past the time for you to do better, church. This is the first open letter of a few I have prepared, where I will…
I made a choice.
I decided I would live honest.
I had spent too much of my time, held by ideas and systems and other peoples decisions and beliefs.
I decided I would share honestly online, as well as offline.
I decided I would share my heart, and engage in conversations that mattered.
I decided it was more important to be honest, to share my truth, my experience, my words — then to continue in silence, as I had done before.
Maybe it was because up until this last year, I had spent too much of my life being held…
she is not an object
not an item to be ogled
not a game to be played
not a pet for your leers -
she is not yours
she cannot be yours
you cannot own a body
a body is her own
I am my own
and this body,
she is mine and
she is me.
and you cannot tell her that she is a glass to have others fingerprints stained upon her or a tease when they-you-they are the ones to make her sexual and who make her sexuality a fucking prize or a temptation when you have made…
I was working a job that ended up being 3-jobs in one. Classic, for the type of organisation it was. They expected me to work and work and work and pour my entire self into my work. So pour myself out I did, because I was so desperate to achieve, so desperate to be of value, and had been taught for so long that value is found in what you do.
I’d been there before — this familiar place of burnout. I knew it well. I’d worked in too many volunteer positions to count, all while holding full-time jobs, sometimes…
Or, like flying.
I am yet to decide which.
It started with a whisper. A recognition — or revelation, if you like — that something wasn’t quite right in the narrative I had been taught to believe. The whisper compelled me to ask questions, not just of my community and what I had swallowed as true; but of myself, too.
As I searched, read, wondered, and examined — the whisper (and look, honestly, the research that is available and accessible) showed me the gaps, the cracks, and the pieces that don’t belong anymore. I began to recognise that the worldview…
Can I trust myself? Am I enough?
Have you ever asked yourself those questions? Have you ever been told that you are not enough? That you cannot and should not trust yourself?
Well, you’re in good company.
In fact, I’d say wherever you go, whatever space you set foot in, be it physical or digital, you’d be in good company.
The question of being enough saturates our self-help books and essays and Instagram accounts and… you get the idea.
The question of trusting ourselves is raised in literally every moment of every day. At this moment, as I write these…
she/her. Curious human and self-love advocate giving language to experience. I tell stories and share my opinion. @jasminejohnston___ on the gram.