Waves

I’m not on Twitter today.

Back in the days when I was a Warcraft player, we had a Scandinavian tank called Than. He was an ex-Army officer, and one of the most capable people ever played with during the entirety of my time in Azeroth. I learnt a phenomenal amount from him, including the importance of principle in being the best human being you could manage, within your time and circumstance.

One day, shortly after we’d managed to beat Karazhan in the Burning Crusade, he left. No goodbyes, no warning and that was it. He’d mentioned this to me a few weeks previously, that sometimes the best way to move on is to just cut the cord and vanish, and I am reminded of him this morning for that reason alone. He needed to move on with his life. The game, as had been the case for so many people, was a distraction.

It was preventing him from what needed to happen more than playing.

Someone has emailed me this morning and called me an idiot for sticking to principle. ‘The only person who loses by you not being on Twitter is you: its your advertising platform, why boycott it?’ There will be absolutely no discernable effect of my action, and I’ll look like an idiot. Once upon a time, I would have believed this, until the concept registered that when someone else is offended by your actions, that’s their issue and not yours. The fact remains: if everyone moved as a unit, Twitter would be affected. The fact they won’t is the bigger issue now.

Those people responsible for abuse on Twitter are protected because their use as product now supersedes the trouble they cause with abuse. The onus is placed on victims to do the work, exactly as it is in reality, and this is how the patriarchy maintain their superiority. It’s how they ignore systematic racism, try and erase transgender rights and visibility, and maintain a status quo that is no longer fit for purpose. I used lots of words that will scare my e-mail creator for a reason. If, as a man, you’re not supporting feminism right now, you are part of the problem.

Sticking to my principles is more important than appeasing those only interested in what they want from me.

This week, I worked out who I am. Of course, I knew who I was before this point, but the crucial difference between Monday and now is the understanding that not only is this the right path, but I’ve already passed my original destination. What’s happening now is the path to success, and that means that the people on Twitter who are impressed at what I’ve done, and who are the ones I really need listening to me have already taken notice. What I’ve gained this week is the ability to see myself objectively for the first time in over thirty years.

There are other people boycotting today. They, undoubtedly will be disappointed at the number of people unable to disconnect from social media. I believe this shows that mental health issues right now matter more than sacrificing the ability to communicate, and that’s a crucial point that will be overlooked by many people. I’m on it. There is a plan and I intend to see if a difference can be made because of it. Having a day away from distraction has cleared my mind and helped me focus on the task in hand.

My principles have become the means by which I move my life forward.

In the end, its what you do that defines your life. That means doing what’s right, and this is.

This is How We Do It

What this weekend has taught me is that trauma is a really great way of forgetting an awful lot of great stuff that happened to you. Whole swathes of my life, it appears have completely vanished from my memory. My husband, however, recalls the past with a clarity I have to say I am somewhat jealous of. Needless to say, he cannot inject these things into my head, and so the pictures will have to do. It has been a rather detached exercise therefore watching other people this weekend deal with grief.

This is, for many years, the only way I was prepared to be photographed when alone. Of course this is back in the days of film and no constant reposing, so fucking up was commonplace, but I do recall getting very good at not posing. I also became wonderful at pretending nothing was wrong when everything was, a habit I’ve now managed to permanently ditch. Last night came the acceptance that no, actually, I don’t need to go back to counselling as I thought might be the case late last year. This is good. I am coping very well.

This is how we do this going forward.

I am disappointed, perennially, at how other people conduct themselves. Waiting until someone dies before remembering you had a life with them is not a good look. This last few days has only reinforced my utter hatred for Facebook and the complete hypocrisy of those who use it for their benefit, and theirs alone. We all know those people, and they are a long way away from the ideal. I also know, without a shadow of a doubt that my husband will never, ever be one of those people and he is, without doubt, a fucking hero.

Pick your friends carefully.