To love someone long-term is to attend a thousand funerals of the people they used to be, The people they're too exhausted to be any longer. The people they don't recognise inside themselves anymore. The people they grew out of, the people they never ended up growing into. We so badly want the people we love to get their spark back when it burns out; to become speedily found when they are lost.
But it is not our job to hold anyone accountable to the people they used to be It is our job to travel with them between each version and to honour what emerges along the way. Sometimes it will be an even more luminescent flame," the quote continued, closing with: "Sometimes it will be a flicker that disappears and temporarily floods the room with a perfect and necessary darkness - Heidi Priebe
“If a person cannot solve a conflict with a friend, how can they possibly contribute to larger efforts for peace? If we refuse to speak to a friend because we project our anxieties onto an email they wrote, how are we going to welcome refugees, immigrants, and the homeless into our communities? The values required for social repair are the same values required for personal repair. And so this discussion must begin in the most micro experience. Confusing being mortal with being threatened can occur in any realm. The fact that something could go wrong does not mean that we are in danger. It means that we are alive. Mortality is the sign of life.”
Everyone is constantly trying to articulate the secret languages in their head to the outside world. If your language is too secret, then no one can understand; if your language is completely public, then there’s no mystery. There’s no longer the pleasure of decoding.
You have to both be incredibly willing to be humbled and also, at the same time, hold an incredible high level of delusion. The high level of delusion is what allows you to keep writing and to want to share it with the world. But you also have to accept that it might not mean anything to other people, or that you might be writing so esoterically or so privately that other people have no way of entering into your ideas.
“the ceaseless grooming and optimizing of ordinary life stands in the way of finding out how else we could spend our attention and our energy.”
Simply put, not all stories are primarily spatial. Not everything is mappable, and not everything belongs on a map. Framing all research questions, all narratives, all phenomena in terms of space, as the spatial turn inclines us to do, often distorts the content. It forces the territory – the phenomena we’re trying to represent, the histories and stories we’re trying to tell, the arguments we’re trying to make – to conform to the map in order to render itself representable. That translation of physical and human reality into data models and plottable points and lines often results in the loss of something essential and irretrievable. Such critiques have been lodged against “indigenous cartography,” or well-meaning development organizations’ promotion of cartographic literacy among indigenous populations in order to “empower” them to assert their own land rights. “The process of mapping,” Nancy Lee Peluso argued in an influential 1995 article, “almost forces the interpretation of customary rights to resources territorially, thereby changing both the claim and the representation of it…
And why do we reduce the beauty of relating to relationship? Why are we in such a hurry? Because to relate is insecure, and relationship is a security. Relationship has a certainty; relating is just a meeting of two strangers, maybe just an overnight stay and in the morning we say goodbye. Who knows what is going to happen tomorrow? And we are so afraid that we want to make it certain, we want to make it predictable. We would like tomorrow to be according to our ideas; we don't allow it freedom to have its own say. So we immediately reduce every verb to a noun.
““If you want to live your life in a creative way, as an artist, you have to not look back too much. You have to be willing to take whatever you’ve done and whoever you were and throw them away. The more the outside world tries to reinforce an image of you, the harder it is to continue to be an artist, which is why a lot of times, artists have to say, ‘Bye. I have to go. I’m going crazy and I’m getting out of here.’ And they go and hibernate somewhere. Maybe later they re-emerge a little differently.””
“Relationships aren’t permanent and they should never be all-consuming. All-consuming relationships are a recipe for losing oneself. Relationships are fragile after all. How quickly you can go from being someone’s everything to their nothing. It’s far better to remember no one person can ever be our everything, which means losing someone doesn’t mean we return to nothing. The romance myth tells us we should hold onto love because there is nobody else in the world who will love us again. This isn’t true. Remember what it was like to love and be loved, even if it was only for a few minutes. Remember that just because something is over doesn’t mean it was any less real. And remember that even a ring doesn’t make anything less broken. People aren’t homes. You can’t buy them or own them. You can’t renovate them to be whatever you want or need according to your changing desire or expectations. You can’t dump your shit all over their interior. You can’t expect them to wait around to comfort your each and every insecurity. People aren’t backup plans or getaways…they exist in the present. They exist and serve many roles and purposes besides being a supporting character in our stories. And we exist outside of playing a supportive character in theirs.”
"This is your assignment.
Feel all the things. Feel the hard things. The inexplicable things, the things that make you disavow humanity’s capacity for redemption. Feel all the maddening paradoxes. Feel overwhelmed, crazy. Feel uncertain. Feel angry. Feel afraid. Feel powerless. Feel frozen. And then FOCUS.
Pick up your pen. Pick up your paintbrush. Pick up your damn chin. Put your two calloused hands on the turntables, in the clay, on the strings. Get behind the camera. Look for that pinprick of light. Look for the truth (yes, it is a thing—it still exists.)
Focus on that light. Enlarge it. Reveal the fierce urgency of now. Reveal how shattered we are, how capable of being repaired. But don’t lament the break. Nothing new would be built if things were never broken. A wise man once said: there’s a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in. Get after that light.
This is your assignment."
—Wendy MacNaughton, Courtney E. Martin