Tuesday, 10 February 2015

You Can't Save Someone Who Doesn't Want Saving

In this world, there are innocents. There are beautiful things, and there are useless, broken things.

I take in these broken things, and strays.

My parents will tell you that I bring in stray cats, and my partner will tell you that I foster stray people. I let them in, feed them and then they don't really leave. I guess they're kind of like cats, too.

I'm always invested in their story.

I always think it's more to it than they let on. Call it a journalistic instinct, but I always know how to sniff out a good story, and I know when someone isn't telling me everything.

I got told this week that I was "brave to try." I don't think that it's particularly brave to give someone a hand, or throw them a rope to pull themselves out of the dark with. I suppose that the brave part is in risking your own safety for theirs. There's no bravery in deserting someone.

Other people will tell you that I'm cold, and that I cut them off. It's the truth that I'm cold when it's necessary, and I believe in a clean cut. It's easier for everybody that way.

Here's the thing about helping people. I will put my neck on the line, I'll lie if I have to, and I'll try and deal with the damage of bulls in a china shop. I'll always give more than they're willing to give me, but because I believe I have more to give. I believe in an old school mafia type of loyalty, the kind that deals in blood and devotion. The kind that intertwines with misery and injury.

Each time, I'll be gifted with secrecy and dark averted eyes. Echoes of I told you so ring in my ears, but I won't leave just yet.

People feel sorry for me sometimes. I don't mean to sound so damn pathetic, but it's true. I hate it with every fibre of my being. Not so much that they pity me, but that I repeatedly allow myself to be taken advantage of in an honest effort to help someone. I find myself falling down the same rabbit hole to catch them.

I am somebody who doesn't look for the best in somebody, I look for the truth and then I will take it or leave it. People will quite happily take what you have to offer, and you'll wait for a breakthrough. You might just get it, but then they'll usually revert back to what they were before. It's all empty wine bottles and old cigarettes. While you try to recover old smiles and force painful truths, they'll abandon their refuge. It's a pointless rescue.

The world is in chaos, and it is in disrepair because human beings use each other, and destroy whatever they need to. It's pandemonium out there because we're all fighting the same demons, the same voices, and we're searching for answers hidden in embers and dust. We're stranded in entropy.

Everywhere we go, there are wayward souls and broken people wandering the world's ruins. Each of us are searching for heirlooms and mementos, things that help us make sense of things. We're searching for a sense of belonging. The search gets lonely, and ashes turn cold. The clouds turn black, and we howl in the wind. 

The world is full of lonely people, and the loneliest are those who forfeit themselves for others.

The truth has always been this: No matter how desperately you try to help someone, they have to help themselves first. They have to want to make it.

They'll always throw it back at us time and time again, and we will always force a helping hand into theirs despite knowing that they will let go. Sometimes the only thing you can do is let someone fix themselves, because we can't all save a life. We can't always make a broken bird fly again.