None of us judged eachother.
The only aura between us was the shared understanding of what it means to be different in a society which eschews diversity even as it applauds it.
We parted ways and I felt a little raw inside. Who is this new me that tells strangers about myself? I used to be shy! (Maybe it's the blog. I should blame it all on the blog!)
So I was thinking of all this, how it feels to open up and expand.
Sometimes I feel like I am ripping open my life. It's exhilarating and terrifying, this trusting of others. Philip Greenspun wrote about it in Travels with Samantha, a cross-country trip he took alone with his dog. He wanted to go out into the world to see if he would be ok. Somehow we all have to find this out for ourselves, and it seems that's the journey I am on now.
I switched lines and waited for the next train thinking about all of this. I was in a questionable neighborhood trying not to draw attention to my lone female state, especially as I was already feeling vulnerable. I took out my phone to distract myself and started tweeting that I didn't feel safe when a scowling, burly guy dropped a two-way radio. The contents scattered everywhere just as the train pulled up.
I bent over to help him but he pulled back suspiciously until he looked up and realized I wasn't stealing his stuff. Our eyes met and we both peered at eachother from behind the walls of our shielded innards. That's when I realized I wasn't the only one who didn't feel safe.
And I thought, that's what we are seeking when we go out into the world.
We are all looking for humanity in eachother's eyes.
“We're never so vulnerable than when we trust someone - but paradoxically, if we cannot trust, neither can we find love or joy.” ~Walter Anderson