NectarLean

An inclination towards the sweet things in life! Hi I'm Emily, 27, I live in Southern California. I love wabi-sabi, old things, new things, silly things... I make, share, love, wonder, laugh and anything else that catches my fancy. My ask is always open so say hello!

Dreaming of the end

We speculated that they’d shove bicycle spokes through our calves, we’d “heard” of it being done before to our brothers and sisters in other countries. But in the name of god we were ready to take it. We were almost giddy knowing that no matter how great the pain we would endure the torture and that shortly after we’d receive the reward of an “earthly paradise”.

Growing up in a fundamentalist christian religion was fun to me, there were more picnics than the average person gets to enjoy in their life, there was interesting stories and there was the undeniable feeling of knowing that we were right.
And there were dreams. Dreams of the end of the world, the intricacies of which rivaled any apocalyptic blockbusters of Hollywood. From very young we were prepped, warned that we might be split up from our family, tortured, tested. Images of concentration camps were used to bolster our resolve, if others before us had “stayed faithful” surely we could too. These warnings followed me into my sleep, my mind running with these scenes, hiding in creeks waiting for militia to pass by, not knowing where my family was but trying to survive on my own, meeting people not knowing whether they were friend or foe. And it does not escape me that these themes still prove reoccurring in my waking life also.
I wasn’t really afraid of these things as a child or young adult either, strange as that may sound. Sure I wasn’t looking forward to the pain but when you think its for the ultimate good you have a pretty strong resolve. 
I’m the baby of the family so I was lavished with the finest goods from far off lands… well not exactly but in contrast to my older siblings I did not have chores as they did so I was “spoiled” by their accounts. By their accounts I was also lazy and messy and overly sensitive, not sure I disagree. I was a latchkey kid, I was pretty sure I was supposed to go to school, and then when I got home, not cause any problems. Sitting inside watching tv was the safest. After all playing outside and possibly hurting myself was a big risk, I knew we didn’t have the money for that. Anxiety about possibilities? Check! But I was happy. I loved playing with my barbies and playing board games with anyone who would take the time. Above all I knew not to cause problems or burden anyone, my siblings were perpetuating  more adolescent turbulence than my parents could handle so I didn’t add to it.
I liked my church friends. As a teen I was excited to go and help with the church activities because of the socializing. Whether it was preaching in our neighborhoods or cleaning the church or assisting in any other function of the organization it was almost always worth it because of the social aspect. In true church girl fashion I was good and followed the rules. I believed with all my mind, told others about “the truth”. And in real church girl even slightly “naughty” things were big thrills. Late night trips to the beach with friends where as repressed teens we would talk about others in the church that were weird (in retrospect, those weirder than us), cozying up slightly to a boy, the sexual tension in just a smirk or a brush of the arm was the most we puritanical virgins could hope for, well that and perhaps a lascivious conversation that only slightly alluded to what none of us had ever done. Not to say that any of us were ready and willing to through away our devotion for these things, we just all truly longed for the day when we could enjoy carnal adult activities as they were intended, as married man and wife. Many hurried to this finish line, marrying the first person they dated within the church and often this was before they could even legally drink.
Dating within the church structure was… confusing. A ratio of what I would venture to guess is 5 females: 1 male made for a shooting fish in a barrel mentality for the men and a slim pickings feeling as a woman. And of course rather than fostering a respect of emotional health within relationships the older members would make light of young love while putting undue pressure on chastity. Joking in one breath about young sisters being hot’n’bothered over a suitable brother and in the next strongly cautioning that they never be alone together without chaperons and that if they were dating they better be well on their way to marriage. 
My dating experience within the church about to this:
-Blind date: fun, Blues Traveler concert (I do not regret that concert at all!) and a man who would never contact me directly, rather only inquire about me through the friends who set us up.
-Preaching date: arrangements were made to go preaching together (note: women and men were usually not assigned to work together for chastity’s sake so things like this were noticed by the congregation), an older lady in the congregation insisted I preach with her as there was no other sister for her to preach with, the guy and I ended up getting lunch after (alone! what a thrill!) and I ended up inviting him to a dinner party (specifically arranged to get some more time together and show off my amazing domestic abilities) and my friends basically watching how we were interacting all night. Said man moved away, end of situation.
-Friend date: best friend and I figure why not give dating a shot, we share a few dinner dates, feels just like we’re friends still but I’m mentally trying to give it a chance, I go out of town for a weekend, he’s dating someone else when I get back. Fin.
Throw into the mix some oddball crushes and you have the extent of my dating life in the church.
At 16 I took the plunge. No, not marriage. Who in their right mind would let their 16 year old make a life long dedication like that?! No. I made an even more consequential decision, I got baptized. I answered all the questions they asked of me, I knew the answers, I this was the next step, and I believed it. Over the next couple of years I preached and finished high school and started working. Nothing was super special, just living and waiting for the end to come.
At 18 I moved out of my parents house. I’m happy I did, I learned to survive on my own, which would prove more vital in more ways than I could imagine. 
Not much happened in the next few years, and maybe it was the boredom that led me to do it, or the fact that I was a 23 year old with a great body and killer hormones that needed to be indulged but whatever it was, I met up with an old friend from high school who had been asking me to hang out. Was I going there to have sex? I don’t think so, I think I was hoping for a good make out session though. But I did sleep with him. It wasn’t bad, it wasn’t great, but it was fun. I knew instantly I would be in trouble but I didn’t feel guilty like I had been told I would. 
Still not foreseeing the events that were about to unfold I did what I was supposed to do in the church, I told the elders. They held a couple meetings about it and gave me a warning since I was repentant and said I wouldn’t do it again. They even had a woman from the church agree to teach me the bible again. Unfortunately for her the pieces just weren’t fitting together anymore. I didn’t believe god was upset with me. I felt connected to a part of myself I had been detached from. I didn’t believe homosexuals were wrong. I no longer believed there was one truth.  While I was happy I was realizing my own core beliefs I realized also what this would mean for my status in the church. I couldn’t go on sitting at sermons and nod along in agreement, pretty quickly I realized the religious label I’d carried my whole life was in stark contrast to my actual beliefs and spirituality. 
People leave in many ways, some fade, some opt out willingly and some get kicked out. I chose the last because I wanted to avoid being branded an apostate, a title assigned to those who know the truth yet willingly leave. I thought getting kicked out some might take pity on me as a misguided one and not shun me so harshly. On a Tuesday night the elders announced I was no longer one of them and from that moment they didn’t speak to me. My friends haven’t said a word to me for years and my family is constantly reminded not to see me unless it is “necessary family business” (the majority of my family haven’t seen me for years either).
I still have dreams of the end of the world. They are filled with interesting plots, heavy action and special effects and sometimes my family is there. I’ve resigned myself to the fact that my mind will never stop trying to figure out the equation that equals me having a relationship with my family again. Until then I’ll dream of the end.

and i might fuck it up, because im having trouble accepting you loving me like this. i feel like im such and optimistic person, but with everything from my past i feel like eventually some part of me will be rejected. i cant predict the future and im trying to not let the past affect me. and why is it that when im alone i can tell everyone what a bad bish i am but when you give me love i feel like maybe you just are intrigued by me but dont really fully understand everything about me yet, and when you do, well who knows what then. but you appreciate in me some things i appreciate in myself, things ive always wanted someone to notice, and you do. i want to talk to you all the time even when i dont have things to say. the sweet things you say brings tears to my eyes, why? i praise you with all sincerity so why cant i accept that you do the same? and im not broken, i dont need to be fixed, and you get that too, its just something im going through and eventually i’ll just feel the glow and not the tinge of pain, like putting salve on an open wound, the slight sting then soothing.

Anonymous asked: 13- Do you get jealous easily? 38 - Have you ever liked someone you didn’t expect to?

Do I ever get really jealous? I am jealous sometimes, like I want some things to be just for me and my friend, or for me and my partner. Does that make sense? Like jealous for intimacy/private things.

And have I ever liked someone I didn’t expect? I dont think so, I pretty much start off assuming I’ll like everyone and then go from there.

I want to feel appreciated. You know how people ask what you want in life? Well I read this book asking how do you want to feel in life. Pretty sure my favorite feeling is appreciation. Appreciated not only for what I do, but also for who I am.

merman-legs:

i just love it when people say to me ‘why do you want to work in fashion when it’s just based on negative body image and relying on insecurities and so superficial’ like hahaha yes i want to enter an industry that is full of creativity and that i have been working towards my whole life and leave it completely unchanged.that is my goal. thanks for the vote of confidence

By letting it go it all gets done. The world is won by those who let it go. But when you try and try …. the world is beyond winning.

—Lao Tzu (via onlinecounsellingcollege)

abittertwistedmemory replied to your post “question about self promotion: for those of you out there who have…”

Thanks for posing this question I’m intrested to see the responses

not too many responses, but someone inboxed me saying they show the work theyve done to promote themselves. which is pretty simple but good. i dont know, im starting to think i also need more clarity on my direction. the whole career path puzzle has lots of pieces and im lagging in putting it together.

question about self promotion: for those of you out there who have your own businesses, or products, or are your own business, or are your own product, did you / do you have trouble with self promotion. i am usually not the type to be like, “hey here i am, im awesome” because i feel like people should just realize that without me saying it, but im starting to think i need to be more “here i am”. this is a very general question, please answer however you like.

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