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Continuation on Tribe and Friendship

September 11, 2009
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It came to my attention back in April when my play partner Spike mentioned to me, ” you have this unfaltering loyalty.”

“You mean clingy”

“Sure you can put it that way but I like that about you. You’re just devoted.”

It’s always been how I am when it comes to friends. maybe it has to do with the fact I didn’t have alot of them in growing up in school especially in high school. There were a small number of us and we were always there for the other no matter what. Flash forward to college and my LARPing (yes I’m one of those kind of geeks and proud of it) days where again the core group of friends was small but damn if anything ever happened to me I had a crew to go to. They saw me through all the good and the bad. The engagement, marriage, messy divorce and the rebuilding I did after that.  Some of those people I still consider some of my nearest and dearest friends and they always will be.

Then there is the sense of chosen family. This has morphed through the years and has been growing but something I notice is that bringing new people into that can be….well….intimidating.  As a person I am passionate, overly forward about my feelings and once I find comfort with someone I will want to know everything and anything about them….NOW.  Yeah…..I can get very OCD with peeps and it has scared off one or three.  Sometimes I catch myself before it gets too bad and other times….not so much.

I’ve added alot of new people to the list of core and some I have been more careful than others which is rather bad of me.  I’m hoping a weekend home will be the centering I need to remind myself that just because people are all over the country that doesn’t mean they will disappear.

Lee Harrington said something to me that what is wonderful about spending time with those we love is that when we leave we take a piece of them with us and vice versa and in turn it means we are never alone. I didn’t find it very comforting when I was crying in his arms at SPANK afraid I would be going 2 years between seeing him again, but now I do get it.

What is interesting how my sense of Tribe in leather vs my sense of Tribe in the dance community differs slightly.  I’m wondering if it is because of what is shared is different? That since most of my dance tribe is women I feel different? Is it because the connections in leather are deeper? Where we offer ourselves up body and soul to those close to us?  Where the armor that we wear as Lee expresses in his essay Sole/Soul protects us but is then removed?

As dancers we also share a part of ourselves our own armor being the costumes and makeup we wear. The characters we play are simply characters right?  No one never need know that it is truly a reflection of our ourselves, or is that the problem? Not enough dancers truly show themselves and so we are guarded except with a few. A select chosen few.  Is that why my leather tribe feels closer than my dance tribe? Nothing hidden vs. holding something back?  It’s something to definitely contemplate.

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