Vulnerability. Honesty. Being naked.
Each time I post something personal here, I walk a careful line. I try to make sure I am not being gratuitously vulnerable. (Although, I am quite sure some people think I go way over that line every time I write.)
What is gratuitous vulnerability? The kind of openness that goes beyond what is helpful. I sort of think of it as the difference between talking about orgasms and describing how to give me one. (Although plenty of women have done that. And it doesn’t seem gratuitous at all.)
I don’t want to be gratuitously vulnerable. But I do want to be vulnerable. Because vulnerability is sexy, ya’ll. It turns me on just to think about it.
Vulnerability is different than honesty.
Honesty is telling the truth (whatever it may be).
Vulnerability is telling the truth when you know there is a possibility of rejection.
For me, vulnerability has helped me develop both the strength and the softness of my heart.
I have developed strength from steeling myself for the possible rejection that vulnerability may bring. By ‘steeling’ I mean the traditional definition- to mentally prepare for something difficulty. But I also feel that ‘steel’ in my heart. My heart feels open and also strengthened by some kind of structure. As if there was a steel girder inside my heart, holding it wide open as I tell my truth and let my love out into the world.
My heart’s strength has also developed from continuing to love despite rejection or pain. This is not to say that rejection doesn’t hurt; it really fucking does hurt. And I don’t always react with equanimity when I am rejected; often I run away and hide for a while to feel the anger and sadness and heal my wounds. But, in the end, I refuse to close my heart down, to let less love flow from it, because of rejection. (Repeated vulnerability with no returned love is a game I’ve played and there comes a time to stop. Building boundaries is a valuable tool in vulnerability.)
The softness of my heart is another consequence of vulnerability, a wonderful one. My heart remains soft when I thoughtfully and intentionally remain open to my truth. I get to be with my heart and its wisdom when I listen to what it has to say. That listening helps strengthen my heart.
And there is the reward of softness that comes from remaining open to another’s truth (even if that truth is rejection). The heart must be soft and strong in order to truly hear someone else’s deepest story. This softness between hearts as we tell our truths may actually be the currency of vulnerability. A soft, open heart contains the energy necessary for vulnerability.
And then, when vulnerability is returned to us- what a gift that is. What an honor it is to hear your story and hold it within my heart. That is why vulnerability is such a turn on- I get to hold your nakedness, your unvarnished truth, in the hands of my heart. This is the closeness we dream of with our lovers. I drown in the beauty of it.
Vulnerability is important in life. Without it, where are we? Alone. Vulnerability is the opening in our hearts, and in our life, that makes life meaningful.
| Show me your petals. Your dirt. Your rain. Your thorns.
None of it scares me. Be vulnerable. |