Acquiring Letters

Which aspects do you think makes a person unique?

Let me start off by saying that I do not believe there is a unique person in the world. We are all startlingly alike, for as much as we’d like to divide ourselves. What makes us unique are not our personality traits, but the billions of permutations in human behavior and your reactions to them. No one is a special little snowflake, yet no one knows how to be you, either.

Taking a Meyers-Briggs exam helped to give me a framework, but it doesn’t tap into how my personality changes with trauma reflexes. The letters, INFJ, stand alone. It doesn’t change how my trauma reflexes kick in when someone hurts someone I love, though, which is objectively worse for me. If someone tried to come after the kid or the dragon, I would bite ankles until it was handled. I would be more likely to help the kid, because dragon, hello…….. Watch out, she sneezes, and the allergies are KICKING HER ASS THIS YEAR, capiche?

I would suit up to play, but I can’t think of a more unnecessary character in any fight unless the answer is a REALLY MEAN LETTER.

Speaking of which, if you have been a victim of assault by grammar, you are entitled to compensation in the form of a letter. It is freely given, and freely received. Choose your own adventure, just know what you want ahead of time. I’m too old to guess and too intense a relationship for anyone who doesn’t want it. I already have people that will go the distance, I don’t have to fight to be heard. I have only the things that make me unique, which is an incredible ability to give and not so good with the taking, apparently, because I need you to spell it out.

Actually, I don’t think I’m unique in that regard. I think I’m unique at how fast I’ll decide to step away from bullshit after running into it face first for years, just lost, confused, but full of hope for the future.

It’s the hope that’ll kill you, especially if there are dreams involved without a plan. I will take that hint posthaste, because it means two things. The first is that you’re not a dreamer, or you can’t commit to even a dream because you can’t see that far. The second is that if you’re not a dreamer, you’ll be irritated with the amount of dreaming I do.

So, better to find people that will engage in my dreams and not talk around them.

I see the things that make me unique, so I also see the things that make others different, like trauma. If you have trauma reflexes, period, that’s one set of reactions you didn’t have at birth. The magnitude doesn’t just add on, it compounds. For instance, it’s not sexual trauma plus combat trauma, it’s one multiplied by the other, or divided out because you chose combat to feel and not feel all at once. Sometimes it’s playing trauma to your strengths, sometimes it’s descending into madness because that’s another path your brain can take to protect you.

Once you get to my age, we’ve all got trauma reflexes from something or another. It’s just degrees. Some people stick to others with their level of trauma, not realizing that most trauma presents the same. It’s navigating the world with third degree burns and not letting anyone know you’re currently on fire.

Those are the things that make you unique. The rest is just a construct. There’s no such thing as gender or race. We made them and the two acceptable heteronormative expressions of them, and have adapted with varying levels of ease. The truth is a whole spectrum of thoughts and feelings that can’t be duplicated from one person to another.

I know I’m not trans. I know it for sure. I also know that I don’t present as female unless you’re a person that needs to stare and figure out my complex construct. By now, most people have a complex construct or a switch that flips from their public armor to the place that’s just the lowest case version of them.

I have never wanted anything but to find the lowest case version of people, to make them feel safe enough to be that with me because I am with them. I will prod people and ask questions unashamedly, but not for my own benefit. I am relentlessly driven to HELP THE SHIT OUT OF YOU.

But if you say you don’t want or need my help, it transfers to the next available representative. I don’t vibe with everyone, and I don’t need to. The only people that have said “no more” are generally threatened by someone being direct with them because they’re the ones that get to be direct. My uniqueness is bringing out things in people they didn’t know were there, staying with them until they believe it.

I am so direct because I don’t bullshit with feelings. I will tell it like it is, and I can feel the energy coming back at me and decide whether it’s worth it to continue. This is because it took me a long time to recognize that boundaries are there for a reason and not having any is a disaster.

I am not going to wait around for disaster to happen, especially if it’s happened so many times before I’ve forgotten half to cope. I have to “forget” a lot of shit because people don’t like having things thrown back in their faces, and they also ignore patterns so you can’t tell them anything.

But that’s just me being frustrated with my own personality type and wishing that I was the heteronormative, flighty airhead my gender stereotype seems to think I am. Good God, I could use a fifteen minute break into my nothing box.

Visions of my friends and family and how I could help dance across my mind, and sometimes I can execute them. Sometimes I’m not capable. My trauma reflexes make me angry or silent or both. Couple that with having chronic disorders with mental health, and it’s a scary ship to right. So of course I have dreams of fixing other people. It’s my unique coping mechanism to deal with the horror of being me.

But it’s only horror in my worst moments, because I have friends whose problems are objectively worse than mine. As a liberal Christian, my faith tells me there is no such thing as competitive suffering. Just because people like Daniel and Zac need your love and compassion doesn’t mean I am not also deserving on a different playing field.

Those playing fields are the uniqueness to being human, not being human itself.

We made all that up. It’s unique to being human.

We just keep acquiring letters and no one should be there to tell us we shouldn’t. Own them. Here are mine: INFJ, ADHD, PTSD. They make me more unique and funny than I’ll ever be on my own. Focusing on what my letters gave me rather than what they took away bleeds over into my real life… Someone wanting to throw them all away….. when they’re the one thing that made me unique.

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