In too deep

In too deep

I always knew that this poem* was God’s wisdom waiting to evolve with it’s meaning in my life.

The poem came to me all at once, but there was much about it that I only half understood, and even whilst fully understanding other parts of it, I knew that God would continue to reveal to me the path these issues took.

There is a segment of the poem that I want to expound upon, now that I have more insight on it.

Running towards and away from my identity
“finding wet solace in the arms of my women
Moist with passion, hot with tears
and excited finally
by this new article for my suitcase; fears.
Loving myself and my women
Wholeheartedly
running away from and towards my identity
Claiming a misdiagnosis
that did not properly cater for
the needs I never received
turning my innocent desire for love
to hate and then back to desire
to placate my frustration
and complicate the diffusion of ‘lesbian’ to my assent”

– excerpt from *‘Why did the Heterosexual Cross the Road?’ – by Janberry

So I’m going to break these lines down.

Running towards and away from my identity.

You can never run far away from the way God made things to work, how you’re wired. Women were made with relational heartstrings. My identity as a woman will always be somewhat bundled into who I’m most deeply connected to. As a child, I never made any important connections. My mother left me when I was very young to go to the US and my father did not stay the course, leaving me also. Affirmation from either of them was lacking. Even more important for me as a girl, connection and intimacy through relationship with my same gender parent, my mother, never materialised. Thing is, not only did my mother go away but she was always distant and disconnected as a person so even from afar, the connection was always just on the verge of itself. It never fully came to fruition…there were a few seeds scattered here and there throughout our 32 year relationship.

I needed this connection, I needed it to affirm and solidify my female identity…you see deep inside me is a desire to be connected. It’s a part of my female heart. You can call it by many other names, you can even misunderstand it and call it something else but it is what it is. This connection and intimacy that women have the talent of cultivating is crucial to the baby girl, the young girl, the teenaged girl, the young adult woman and the woman. At every stage of life, women desire this. And when it is not uncovered and healthily nurtured at a young age, it turns on itself, or runs overboard.

My identity was encaged within my relationship with my mother, and this never truly formed in a healthy way. Hoisted upon me were relationships with other women and men who did not care for me and know me well enough to truly attend to the needs inherent in all children. It wasn’t their fault…all they were asked to do was take ‘care’ of me in the absence of my parents and this means different things to different people.

It wasn’t until my teenage years that all the disconnection that I’d encountered when I was younger finally found it’s way back to the heart of a woman, where it rightfully belonged but by now, it had been completely misunderstood in my own eyes. I needed a connection with a woman – a deep intimate connection that was healthy, whole and non-sexual. Instead, by the time I found out how deeply satisfying and fulfilling this connection was, it was mistaken as being a sexual desire – it was that big of a missing element in my heart and life up to that point. So the innocent desire turned on itself, and here we have the other few lines:

“finding wet solace in the arms of my women
Moist with passion, hot with tears
and excited finally
by this new article for my suitcase; fears.
Loving myself and my women
Wholeheartedly
running away from and towards my identity
Claiming a misdiagnosis
that did not properly cater for
the needs I never received
turning my innocent desire for love
to hate and then back to desire
to placate my frustration
and complicate the diffusion of ‘lesbian’ to my assent”

– excerpt from *‘Why did the Heterosexual Cross the Road?’ – by Janberry

(*This poem is now titled ‘Untitled’, as Arielle John, the poet who originally utilised the name for a poem she wrote at Ink Quest I, retains the right to the name, for a public work)

So, you may ask, why the ‘fear’? Hold your horses, I’m getting there.

Most of us don’t sit at the foot of God’s wisdom long enough for him to show us our hearts – he won’t do it in one swoop though – it’s a life-long thing. The fear comes with every misshapen need. We were born with various needs and desires, as humans, as males, as females; some God-given and some stemming from the brokenness inherent in the world we live in (goes back to the whole Adam-ate-de-fruit thang – Book of Romans 5 verse 12 – Holy Bible). David – really animated guy in Bible history – said it like this ([biblegateway passage=”Psalm 51 verse 5″ display=”Psalm 51 verse 5″] – Holy Bible), “For I was born a sinner—yes, from the moment my mother conceived me.” It isn’t necessary for us to be too hung up on what we;re born with from what we grew into because all of this never means that God cannot give us the power and strength to overcome all that enchains our existence. Herein lies the beauty of God’s transformative work – if we follow him, we realise that this world is messed up…and we were born messed up. Yip, I said it…we were ALL born with varying desires and needs that aren’t whole and healthy. The key to walking with Jesus is letting him pick our heart apart, and remodel it so that we understand how it had been pieced together…we understand the things that we’ve come into this world with..we understand the things that were formed in us through hurt, pain and life in a broken world. I needed to say this as a precursor to explaining the fear.

So, back to the fear. Inside of us as I mentioned before, there are needs that are inbuilt. We feel these needs but sometimes can’t quite put a finger on the source of them, or what exactly they are pressing us to satisfy. The fear being referred to in the poem was the fear of losing this new source of having my needs met. My need for intimacy and connection with the same gender had been sexualised and then became my constant and restless desire. My fear was that after living so long without these needs being met that now this satisfaction would easily dissipate. I’ll leave it at that for now, since the main focus of this writing was the connection and intimacy which began as a faintly recognised need but grew into an overwhelming lust that ransomed my identity.

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