I am a ballroom.

I’m a student. I am currently in the middle of my studies.
I study religion. I study Christianity specifically. I read a lot about trauma both in and outside of class. There’s so much that my classes do not and will not cover.
I feel heavy and lost.
I feel like my voice does not matter.
I feel like my voice is lost in an ocean and no one is watching to see if the bubbles are coming up.
I don’t know the impact of my voice.
I don’t know if this studying will pay off.
I am told my voice is a gift, but their lives do not reflect that the gift is received.

I have a sexuality.
I am desexualized often.
I want things.
I am hypersexualized often.
My wants are not considered.
I’ve fought hard for myself.
I’m a mess. In therapy for more than 7 years.
I am told I am a saint.
I am told I am a problem.
I am told I am intimidating, “too” good, by people who haven’t lifted a finger to move their own hearts.
I am not a place for cheap compliments.
I am not a place for flattery.

I don’t know how to survive the world as it is.
I don’t know how to survive this emotional landscape.
I don’t know how to survive without my friends. The ones who recognize and respect my autonomy. The ones who know how brave I am, but do not leave me alone in my courage.

I want more spaces where I can feel everything and it is not a problem.
I am not a place to be fixed.
I am not a place to look at so that you don’t look at you.
I am tired of self-reflecting in a world that doesn’t self-reflect.
I am tired of hearing “be yourself” in a world that doesn’t value authenticity.

I am a ballroom.
I am a place to waltz in.