It’s easy to want to point fingers at each other when there’s conflict in our interpersonal relationships. Our egos want there to be a bad guy without looking at the full context of our behaviors. Before we rush to cast blame, we can hold ourselves accountable. We’re human; we make mistakes.
Hello, gentlepeople! My name is Tiara (She/They/Pronoun fluid). I am a social worker, introvert, writer, and fellow awkward human being. I started my blog, Muted Mouthful, in 2018 as a hobby to help me untangle some of life's messiness. I have always felt out of place and misunderstood. My mind is loud, but my voice is quiet, and I needed a safe space to unload. Muted Mouthful is an extension of myself. It allows me to communicate my feelings, thoughts, and questions without judgment. As a Black, Puerto Rican, queer and non-binary person, my perspective and lived experiences are "supposed" to stay suppressed. My blog tells my story through personal essays, creative writing, and random shenanigans.
Autumn marks the season of transformation and the start of the holidays. With that comes an expectation to maintain traditions and express gratitude, a desire that is not universal for all of us. You don’t have to accept and find goodness in everything. You can be grateful and acknowledge you need change.
Whether you’re a long-standing follower or a newcomer, let’s become more acquainted. Here’s a reintroduction to the blogger behind Muted Mouthful.
With all the information available from trained professionals and humans sharing their lived experiences, I’d like to think folks are gaining a deeper understanding of themselves and others. However, with all this information and reflection, I am growing concerned about one term that has been on the tips of people’s tongues, and that’s the word “toxic.”
“I don’t recognize you anymore.”
Her words floated across the table, making their way to my ears, clashing with the sound of rain hitting the tall windows of the cafe. We haven’t even said hello, I thought to myself. I sat silently for a moment, stirring my coffee, carefully making sure the spoon didn’t hit the edges of the mug, a brief distraction. Dark gray clouds were parading across the sky, dimming the natural light shining through. Rain could be a good sign; rain is healing. I pictured this scene many times in my head, mentally preparing for the conversation that would inevitably take place. With a deep breath, I looked up to meet her eyes, “Hello, mother.”
I used to feel so torn apart by the idea of friendship because it never seemed like I was doing it right. How could I form these connections and still feel like something was missing or off? What’s wrong with me?! I wasn’t nurturing the very first friend I made, myself.
Imagine a demon hag with sunken eyes, a deep black hooded cloak, and long boney fingers following me around, sounding alarm bells, and making me second-guess my every move. That’s how I pictured my anxiety and our lopsided relationship. Something needed to change.
Healing is uncomfortable.
This year I make my 30th trip around the sun. I’ve grown and changed in so many ways, taking shape as the person I need myself to be. I have to remind myself that, as scary as life can be, I am powerful and capable of tackling it all.
Love is abundant; there are infinite ways to demonstrate your feelings. Physical closeness is only one of the many ways to show our affection for each other. It’s not the only way.