If I traded everything - my job, my money, my car, my family, my friends, my skills, my mind, my style, my sexuality, my secrets. Everything. If I traded all those worldly things away – what would I have left? Something very basic – maybe the old fashioned view of character… for a long time – I thought it was more dignified to be able to walk away from the things that matter most. More strong.

I have walked away from many things – family, boyfriends, school. There were bad parts to those – and I just walked away, and never looked back. And moved forward into the future, as if the past never existed. I loved those people – and it hurt me to walk away. But, I didn’t need those people to live – and I proved it. I wasn’t destroyed. I survived and started over.

Sometimes, I fake no ideas and no skills, to see how people treat me. I put a hat on and wear baggy clothes so no one thinks I’m pretty. I go to places where I don’t know a soul. And this keeps me in check – education, skills, sexuality, being part of “something” – I like those things, but I can survive without them

To me it proved that I have a strong enough character to build up a life – but also a strong enough character to live without the comforts. It’s true that nothing lasts forever. And I’m ready for it. Friends and family die, relationships end, looks fade, skills become irrelevant. I’m ready. I have gone through the drills practicing for things to end. Painfully - over and over.

But, this is not the right way to run a life – to live through fear. As a result I have run away from some incredible people where the problems could have been worked out – instead of given up on. And it feels so lonely. It also gets very old to start over as a novice, when I knew I was quite good at something else before. So, it is the self-fulfilling prophesy, in acting on fear – I have created the fearful outcome – everything important to me keeps ending.

So, if you want to take a fool’s advice… work things out with the people you love… work diligently on your skills… don’t walk away from anything without measuring the consequences. Yes, it is strong to be able to take on the world and its harshness on your own. But, luckily, most of us have cushions to protect us. Don’t trade away those cushions. You need them and more importantly, they need you.