I’ve become a big fan of memes these days. I’ve copied and shared numerous ones – especially about coffee and sleep! – on different social medias and with different friends, as appropriate. When I came across this one, it spoke to me loudly and clearly, and I determined that it needs to be shared here as well. It reads:
It’s said that we are all our own worst enemies. I don’t know if that’s true for everyone, but it certainly is accurate for me. I’ve written before about how I hold myself to a higher standard than I hold others, how I feel guilty at even the possibility that I might let someone down and other similar topics. I also know that when I do something nice for others, it makes me feel good, and I subconsciously add that to the “done good” column. But when I’m feeling fragilely depleted, as I am these days, and realize that I have nothing good to give unless I put on that fateful mask and pretend everything is okay, I’m at a crossroads.
I’m good at being chatty and cheeky. It’s a natural and oft seen part of me. I rationalize to myself that this is what people have come to expect from me, and that my silliness and positivity give them a moment to smile. I’m happy I can do that. But when I can’t do it naturally, an internal fight goes on inside my head. I like making people smile. I like creating a moment or two in another’s day that makes them chuckle or relax. But when it’s not something that’s coming naturally, I either tend to hide myself away because I don’t have it to give, or I ‘pretend’ at being that chatty, cheeky person. Neither is the right answer.
The mask frightens me. I wore it for so many years that it became a way of life and it often came close to destroying me pretending to be someone who wasn’t genuine and real. It took me a long time to release the glue that held that mask in place – and a painful time releasing it as well – so I shudder about the idea of putting it on and having to start that process all over again. The alternative is also frightening. I’m not a social butterfly by any means, so my life is generally secluded. My socialization occurs in places and with people who, with the exception of my bestie and my brother, have only ever seen that positive side of me. Plus, in this world full of problems, I’m not likely to lay my own on people whose problems seem so much worse than mine.
I’ve gotten off-track a bit. Thinking back to the meme, I might need to print it out and put a copy in several places where I’m bound to see it. Maybe if I learn to concentrate on the good vibes of the good things I do instead of keeping such a growing list of all of the ways I haven’t done good, I’ll be able to be more ‘okay‘ with myself and more willing to reclaim the funny, sarcastic part of me that people like seeing. It can’t hurt, can it?