Walls: Part 2 I Hate Walls

For anyone who's read Part 1 of my three part thought process about walls, you'll know I ended it with, "I love walls and I love being a wall."

As I wrote that, I couldn't help but think to myself, "I hate being a wall. I hate walls."

Let me explain.

As much as I have loved walls, doors, and locks since I was a child, I've also always hated them. A couple people who knew me when I was really little have confirmed that no matter what they did, I always found a way to get past them. As soon as I could walk, no door could keep me in. I figured out how to unlock the front door so they installed something at the top of the door to keep the door locked. So what did I do?

I took my little play chair, set it on top of my play table, climbed up, undid the locks, and opened the door. Next thing they knew, I had driven my Big Wheel to my friend's apartment.

I hate walls. While walls have always been a conscious choice for me - a safety precaution - they've also been a cage, a dungeon, a prison. When someone else puts walls around me or locks a door or when I hide behind walls for too long, I start to feel trapped, stagnant, and like I'm missing out in life.

Remember how I said that looking back at my most vivid memories of my early childhood, 9 out of 10 of the best memories were near a wall, behind a closed door, in a confined space? That's true. But at the same time, 9 out of 10 of my worst memories were near a wall, behind a closed door, or in a confined space.

The time I was just a toddler and a hot iron fell on my hand, leaving me physically scarred for the rest of my life? I was surrounded by walls. I couldn't escape.

The time I was abused for the first time? I was in a confined space, with many walls, many obstacles, many reasons I couldn't escape.

The times I closed myself off from people who "didn't understand me" and found that the walls weren't enough to heal my pain. They were barely enough to contain the explosion of emotion I was experiencing, and they offered no release.[TW: slightly detailed mention of self-harm]Since the walls couldn't contain the screaming in my head and the amount of anxiety swirling around in the pit of my stomach, I did the only thing I could think to do. I'd grab whatever I could get my hands on - my razor, my brother's razor, a razor blade, a knife, a piece of broken glass, hell in a pinch I'd even use my own fingernails.

I'd find my release valve, but since the walls couldn't offer me relief anymore they instead served as a barrier between me and a potential support system. Locking the bathroom door enabled me to be alone so no one could stop me. And also, so no one could care for me. So no one could try to understand.

And now, if I don't feel safe I don't lock the door behind me. Because, gods forbid, if anything should happen to me I don't want to be locked in a room by myself. I don't want it to be hard for others to get to me. I don't want to make it harder for me to be saved, loved, and supported.

But I haven't gotten to the point of giving up walls. I haven't gotten to the point where I can stop closing doors behind me, hiding, and waiting for someone to come find me. So for now, I'll leave the door unlocked. Come on in. Please.

Walls are starting to feel like a cage I can't escape. And even as I write that, I'm worrying about how raw and vulnerable I am when I say that. Worrying about how those words will be perceived and if people will read my words and be concerned. To me, it's not something that is worth the concern of others.

It's just a fact - that my walls have become a cage that I'm not quite ready to be free from. I'm not even really open to visitors, I'll come out when I feel comfortable, and consider yourself lucky because right now you're in the cage with me. On one hand, I don't really want you in here, but at the same time I need the company and letting you in is the only way to show you what's going on.

But sometimes I wonder if by confining myself to this space - this house, this room, these walls - I'm depriving myself of life and experiences I could be having. And I wonder why I build these walls, put up these barriers, and stay behind them, when I've always fought for freedom. And the only answer I have is that it's safer to choose the freedom of defining my barriers than it is to choose the freedom of being without restriction.

After breaking free from the barriers that others set around me, I didn't really know how to live life free. So I built my own barriers because boundaries and walls are all I've ever known.

Walls are my best friend and my worst enemy.

Walls: Part 1 I Love Walls

Okay, I know those who clicked on this expecting to get a deeper look into my mind might be thinking, "Okay, so you love walls. Why make an entire post about this? How is this going to be a deeper look into your mind?"

This is a three part thought process on walls. And if you read both parts you'll get a much deeper look at the complexity of my mind and how my experiences, even ones that are seemingly insignificant, have shaped the way I think.

Ever since I was a little kid, I have loved walls and especially doors. There's something so comforting to me about them. Looking back at my most vivid memories of my early childhood, 9 out of 10 of the best memories were near a wall, behind a closed door, in a confined space.

Walls have always felt like a security blanket. Like a warm hug, a shield from pain. Doors have always been a choice I love to have. The ability to close myself off and escape, and dear gods if the door came with a lock - even better! I could create a barrier that I HAD CONTROL OVER! No one was getting near me unless I chose to unlock the door, and that feeling of choice was empowering.

And if I found myself in the sad situation of not being able to lock a door... Well then it was an empowering fight for my space, straining what weight I had against the door to keep it closed no matter how hard the other person pushed. Waging a war, holding my ground, and saying, "No. I closed myself into this space because I need to get away from you and put a wall between us so that I can just breathe for a second."

And winning that fight, claiming my space, forcing the other person to walk away and give me time. I never thought that fights would be some of my best and most impactful memories, but they were. Because every fight involving walls or doors that I can remember, whether I won or lost, is imprinted upon my mind and my heart and was so instrumental in shaping the person I have become.

Because it was a little moment where I stood up for myself. Where I decided that my space was a castle and I was the ruler of my castle, and I was going to get my space and be alone or fight for it until they finally broke in. Even if I lost and they burst through the door and forced me to talk, I still had fought. That made me feel good about myself, that even if they were stronger than me I was a fighter and I always knew that one day I'd be strong enough to fight them off, even if I wasn't strong enough just yet.

And I remember the days I was strong enough. But before I get there, you have to understand that so far I've been describing walls as something around me, defining my space. An external source of protection. But describing walls as an external form of protection is a metaphor for the feeling of safety, closing people out to get some time for myself, in my own world, escape, strength, firm resolve. The days I won my battles over my walls were the days I started to see myself as a wall. I started to see myself as having the attributes associated with walls - strength, impenetrability, firmness.

I started to see myself as a wall the day I held back from saying the full extent of my beliefs on the LGBTQ+ community but mustered up the strength to challenge my parents with, "Why is it wrong for men to be perceived as feminine? Are you saying that there's something wrong with femininity? And why are dresses only associated with women? That's society's perception of femininity, that's not some law of nature," when they asked me if I thought it was acceptable for us to "demasculinize men by thinking it's acceptable for men to wear women's clothing." (Their words, not mine).

I started to be a wall that day but my wall broke when they asked me, "Do you think homosexuality is wrong?" And I wanted to say, "no," but I couldn't get the word out. I said, "Yes," and shoved my "no," far back into the corner of my mind, between "insanity" and "undefined," between, "I like women!" and "If they know I like women, I won't be the perfect daughter they want me to be."

There were days I shoved my true beliefs even further back than that, between "This is how women are supposed to act, what they're supposed to do, and what I have to do," and, "What if I'm not a woman? And what if that's okay?" Days when I shoved my true beliefs down were days that I hid behind walls rather than seeing myself as a wall.

I saw myself as a wall the day I stopped pretending I was straight and said, "No, I'm not confused. I know what I'm attracted to." That day I stopped pretending to think the way that they did and told them what I really thought.

The moments when I knew they were baiting me and berating me and instead of keeping quiet and letting their words abuse me, I opened my mouth and told them what I really thought and challenged their confining mindset. In those moments, I was a wall.

But the fights were the best. The day I held my ground and cursed at my adopted father, which might not sound positive but it was. When I started to speak, "I'm so freaking tired-" and instead of letting me finish my sentence he replied, "You might as well just say the f-word." And I looked at him and said, "Okay," and the whole house could hear me, "I'm so FUCKING tired, I'm so FUCKING done, I'm fucking tired of all of the expectations and the pressure to be a certain way for you to love me." Or at least that was what I tried to say but I was silenced after the third "f-word." But I tried. Do I recommend cursing at parents? Not typically. But to me, that was something that I needed to do to show that I would not be a doormat.

Walls. Doors. I still love them and still enjoy surrounding myself with them when I need to escape. Recently I've been spending a lot of time with them, and have even spent enough time behind different doors and walls to know how certain ones feel, which ones are best to shield me from different types of pain, and what situations can't be solved by them.

I'm learning more and more how to be a wall. But until I decide how much of a wall I want to be, I'll keep surrounding myself with walls and barriers. I love walls and I love being a wall.

Welcome

A quick introduction: unless I have given you permission to call me something else, I go by Indigo or Indie. No other names are to be used for me unless expressly stated otherwise. I'm not too picky about pronouns, but vastly prefer they/them/their or he/him/his pronouns. However, she/her/hers is acceptable.

I've had my LJ account just sitting here and I can't believe I'm about to upload contact to a platform without having it fully set up with images. However, the anxiety surrounding the task of adding images and updating the profile to my liking is preventing me from doing those things and actually writing something. So for now I'm skipping the setup anxiety and just getting straight to the writing.

Welcome to my virtual space. As this is my space, I expect those who enter to respect me and the space that I have created. I will have a more detailed post of what this entails at a later time, but for now keep in mind that I do not permit the use of sexist, ableist, or racist slurs. This particularly rings true for me with ableist slurs surrounding intellect.

If you've ever wanted to truly see me and my mind without walls or barriers, this is going to be the place you'll want to keep your eye on.

This is where you'll see me raw and vulnerable. You'll see the parts of my mind and thought process that I'm generally afraid to show. And you'll find out things about me, my past, my life, and the choices I've made that I would otherwise be too embarrassed or anxious to tell you to your face.

This is going to be a place where I can take off my mask and just be me. Being a space where I am allowing myself to be so vulnerable, please show kindness and respect while you are here and treat this as a private conversation.

Some posts may be friends-locked, which would mean that until further notice you will have to be my friend on LiveJournal to have access to locked content.

So yeah, anyone who's ever wanted to know me more fully or gain a sort of user manual for understanding me and how I work, this is the place.
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