"I am a brutally soft woman." - Nayyirah Waheed
It's entirely too easy for me to apologize for my emotional nature. I feel pain all too clearly and I express it all too openly. I drown in sorrows the same way I drink away my feelings. I'm a victim to my radiating heart that sometimes my mind gets lost in the shuffle of reality I regularly ignore. I want to be a tower of greater stability, but these waves of ferocious emotions wash over its heavy roots. I'm soft. Desperately. Utterly. Defeatedly. And I'm far too ashamed to let the world see it--worried it'll make me less of the strong individual I am, despite my broken moments. Because while I am fully capable of standing as tall as the mountains, I am equally as willing to fall so low that the dirt feels like skin. My bones are only made of extremes--a curse within a cure all its own. Who wants to witness that, anyways?
But I don't want to apologize for it anymore.
I'm tired of justifying who I am. I'm overwhelmed by guilt I'm not attached to. They said being hard meant protecting your heart. But I feel more suffocated than guarded. I feel less connected with the world, hiding parts of myself under these silent shadows. I want my emotions to breathe in and out. If I want to cry, I want to wail out my lungs. If I want to laugh, I want the world to hear its happiness. My vulnerability is my deepest strength. My empathy is my favorite feature. Admitting to all types of my emotions--ecstatic or painful or apathetic--is refreshingly enlightening. I am a more whole being for the my art to share it aloud than for the encumbrance of tucking pieces of myself under a stability blanket. I won't apologize for what makes me more human even if it's not the kind of human people are comfortable with.
I'm soft. Absolutely. Intensely. Candidly.
Photography by Georgie Hunter