Ever started a story and not been able to stop? To have one of those little memories that is tucked away that you have never and don't ever intend to share, one of those pivotal embarrassing or sacred or just personal stories that belongs only to you and have it bubble out like a natural hot spring?
I have hundreds, filed in the dusty filing cabinets of my memory, some deliberately buried under piles that become deeper and deeper every year in an effort for the to not surface. Some because they are painful, others because you don't want to think about them. Others just because they simply *are*. They were processed long ago and don't need rehashing.
Somehow I started telling a story last night and couldn't stop. A story that is pretty sad and grimy and forgettable and yet has made me into the person I am.
I have realised that I trust people as a default setting. I am naturally optimistic about people and their "goodness". I think everyone has a spark of humanity in them and that I could like pretty much anyone. I don't hate anyone. I don't think I ever really have aside from myself. But the way I am able to maintain that is I don't test people. I don't give people bits of myself for them to show that they are trustworthy. If I don't set people up to disappoint me then they can't.
Very few times do I break that rule, do I tell stories, do I give info that has the power to re-evaluate how I feel about other people. If people don't know personal information about me, the truly personal stuff, not the usual crap, then they can never use it against me, or thoughtlessly, or in a way that could disappoint and hurt me.
I don't grieve publicly, I don't really celebrate publicly either. The only person who has truly seen me in all my moods is my husband, and even then it took so much for him to be let in that way. Even then there are parts he doesn't have access to. It bewilders him sometimes because he is so open and so giving that it does not occur to him to withold anything. More importantly again, as I have learned, he doesn't push, he doesn't demand to know, but allows me to have my core.
On the few occasions I have trusted people I have invariably been disappointed. When I've needed support I've not received it. When I've been vulnerable in the worst way, stripped bare with grief and unable to think beyond getting through the next second without imploding, I was let down. And truly, it takes me longer to recover from that disappointment than the grief and pain of whatever I was sharing.
But I told a story last night and did not look for the catch. Did not lay the "trap" to see the reaction. I shared it for myself, to let go of one of the little knots to see how it felt. I won't pretend that I enjoyed it, or that it was one of those lightbulb gleaming moments. It wasn't. At the end I just felt wrung dry and trapped like I have done before. But I didn't wait for a reaction and didn't have one that I wanted/needed prepared earlier. Instead of being a trust time-bomb ticking away it just was.
A memory I had wanted to extrapolate. Nothing more.
Even if it left me bereft afterwards.