There is so much to think about in this piece SJ. As per your usual, it is superbly written. I especially liked the bits about….writing.
I am going to take personal issue with your ending. Simply my way of viewing life and the world around me.
If I were to see you photographing me across a train platform, I would not take offense. Most likely I would be flattered to be found interesting enough to be photographed.
Yes, I am a woman. Yes, you are a man. No matter.
I will never label myself as a victim. Any stories from my past, stories in which I played an unwilling participant in somebody else’s messed up life are history. I treat them as a lesson and leave them to rest. They do not define me. I will never be of a mind to dredge them up for the world to look upon, seeing me in a different light. I am not a victim. I am a person who has experienced both pleasant and unpleasant things. Haven’t we all?
All may not feel the same. Some need to talk about things. I do not. It is like the cheese scone, good or bad. Experience it, deal with it, never dwell upon it. How can I be my best self right now? Today.
So, if you ever spy me across a train platform, take the photo. Do not destroy it. I am fine.