Masks

masks

Nathaniel Hawthorne once wrote, “No man, for any considerable period, can wear one face to himself and another to the multitude, without finally getting bewildered as to which may be the true.”

We all act differently around certain people, because we want to impress them, or maybe because we simply don’t want to dissapoint them. And sometimes, indeed, we can’t figure out who we really are.

I once wrote that our freedom is limited only by what we believe to be the perception others have about us. If we’re afraid the world won’t like us for who we really are, then we try our best to “behave.”

It’s incredibly difficult to do this, day in and day out. In the end, you won’t have a moment of peace, as long as you’re afraid the mask will fall off and people we’ll see you for who you really are.

I frankly don’t know why people do this, I just know why I did it. Because I wanted to belong, to find my place. I wanted to be accepted by the vast majority of people I met, so I did my best to act as shallow as possible. I’m somewhat funny, possibly even charismatic, so it wasn’t that difficult for me to act as if I didn’t care.

But you know what they say about funny people actually being the saddest of all creatures, right? But that doesn’t matter, as long as on the outside everything seems to be all right.

Back in high school few people knew I wrote. Now, that’s what really defines me, it’s the most important thing about me. Maybe it’s the only thing that really defines who I am.

Andre Gide once wrote, “It is better to be hated for what you are than to be loved for something you are not.”

Isn’t it true that we spend a lot of time trying to figure out what’s our purpose on this planet? What is it that we love doing? What is it that we want most? What is it that we’re truly great at? And what do we want after that? I’d say we spend the rest of our time on this Earth trying to find someone willing (or is it capable?) of loving us for who we really are.

We hope there’s one person, just one of out 7 or so billion, who’s capable of seeing us for who we are and decides to love that person, no matter what.

But isn’t it true that sometimes it feels as if we’re never who we think we are? That, somehow, something always gets lost in the “translation?”


This post was sponsored by Crystal Jepsen.

“You were meant to be successful my friends, not eating Kraft Dinner 3 nights a week (unless your a KD fanatic). I see a star in the sky with your name on it, and I want you to reach for it. The full potential that you have inside you has yet to be tapped, so I ask you this…what has been holding you back?”

Check her blog out here.

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8 thoughts on “Masks

  1. Morning Cristian, once more another thought provocative post 🙂

    I wore a mask for years in the bid to fit into ‘society’, not knowing who l truly was. Of course that all finally came to an answer in 2008 when l was diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome. My masks had been dropped from my face some years previously, l had simply given up trying to pretend l was another version of myself, and then once the diagnosis arrived, they stayed off permanently my credo was simple ‘Like me for who l am, or do l look like a give a flying monkeys?’

    Now people – well either like who l am or they don’t and l am past caring – sounds brutal and harsh, it’s not, it is however a bare faced reality.

    All of us at one time or another, or in fact many people still do, wear masks on a daily basis. The ones who refuse to drop them and unmask are the ones who have not yet found the courage to believe in themselves. Not everyone does, they fear the peer pressure of fitting in, and fear the ostracising more than they value who they are.

    Good post. Rory [ps; how is your Truly inspired coming along?]

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The biggest reason I fell in love with my SO was because he accepted me who I was…warts and all (as the saying goes). We have never tried to change the other or make each other fit our expectations of what a married couple should be. We are who we are, and we love it that way.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Really loved this post as it made me think :O) People can only love us for who we are if we allow them to see who we really are which means allowing ourselves to be completely vulnerable with everyone because we never know who the ONE will be. Taking down all the walls, tearing off all the masks is the only real way to be happy with ourselves but we rarely do it because we are too concerned with whether or not other people will be happy in our company. We have to let go to be loved and we have to love ourselves to be able to let go – bit of a catch 22…….x

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I never really cared about what people thought about me when I was younger. But then, once an adult, I tried a mask on because of some comments from my family. And it was so heavy. Exhausting. I knew it wasn’t a real me, but somehow, I am not sure if who I was before was unmasked… I might have fooled myself. Maybe I put a mask on top of a mask, without taking the previous one off…

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I think you touched on the two main concepts that drive us through life. We want to have purpose and in the end we want love. I think that feeling of not being who we really are comes from all the untapped potential and missed opportunities that weigh on us. Even if we can’t pinpoint these missed moments I believe subconsciously we feel the loss. So to me, that begs the question does what we dont know really not hurt us?

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I never had a problem being who I was because I was popular as a young person always winning the drama roles, the dancing roles, music, and the list goes on. Then one day I learned the hard fact that there were people out there who were hating me because I was who I was. That’s when I started hiding my light under a bushel barrel.

    However, being all the things that I was, was my escape from a cruel and difficult life in an orphanage in Chicago, and hiding was not working for me. I learned then, what I’ve kept all these years, that to be myself, like it or not, was the only truth that mattered. The friends I made as a result of being who I was became the best friends of my tomorrows.

    Until—Multiple Sclerosis came along. Then I found myself putting on a mask to hide my pain so as not to worry family and friends. Every day, I put on my happy face and all was well with the world outside. However a war raged inside of me, one that needed to find voice to channel my feelings.
    I decided to write. Now all masks are off and people can choose to share my journey or not.
    In regards to searching for who we are. Yes, I’m there and I hope I never stop looking for my possibilities.

    Liked by 1 person

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